Friday, September 12, 2014

McLean & Eakin Bookseller - Petoskey, MI

McLean & Eakin Booksellers - Petoskey, MI

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Readers, I have good news and bad news about McLean & Eakin Booksellers in Petoskey, Michigan.  The bad news is that unless you live in Northern Michigan you're a heck of a long way from McLean & Eakin.  And that long way includes two-lane roads with a lot of slow drivers.  The good news?  Well, you can buy some fresh cherries at a produce stand along the way to help you endure the trip.  But the best news of all is when you get to McLean & Eakin in Petoskey.  Your long painful drive will melt away the minute you walk through the doors of this very vibrant and energetic independent in Northern Michigan.

I visited here on a Monday morning and all independents should be humming the way I found this one.  Locals, tourists, moms, kids, you name it.  Local school kids get 10% off their order of books that are on their school's reading list, a great idea.  They have a wonderful children's section on the main level and it was busy as well.  This indie has lots of sidelines on the main and lower level, many of these items of the touristy variety that would cater to that clientele.  Kirstyn, the staffer I spoke to this day, mentioned that business is great here and well supported by locals and tourists alike.  Even though many locals will spend winters in Florida or Arizona, these people continue to support McLean & Eakin with a very user-friendly online ordering system via the website.  They've also embraced the ereader market and their Kobo sales here are outstanding, one of of the best in the nation for their market.

On the lower level, you'll find more sidelines, more books, magazines, and vinyl, which is continuing to grow in sales at many indies.  The store is very active with author visits and they can be held on the lower level or main level depending on circumstances.  Only new books are sold at this independent but there doesn't' seem to be any need to start a book buy-back program.

I didn't get to meet the owners on this visit, Matt and Jessilynn, but you can tell that they put a lot of time and thought into how to do things here.  This approach is reflected in the wonderful staff members here who I did get to visit with, Kirstyn, Stephanie, and Angelo.  They were swamped this day but they were great to talk to and told me lots of things about the store.

This is a proud store, an award winning store, featured in My Bookstore, by Ron Rice, the guidebook for my journey.  As I checked out there it was, proudly displayed and brought to the attention of all the customers.  So endure the road trip, the slow drivers, and then arrive in Petoskey where you will enjoy a visit to a fantastic independent bookstore.  Go to an indie and buy a book.  Bonsoir.

CURRENTLY READING:  The Book Of Unknown Americans, Cristina HenrĂ­quez.  Really liking it.

RECENTLY PURCHASED: ...and recently finished.  The Storied Life of A.J. Fikry, Gabrielle Zevin.  Story of an independent bookstore owner.  Not everyone will like this one.  But I loved it.

Great window display.  

Main level, this is what I saw when I entered.  I blame the fuzziness on the long drive to get here!

Great staff picks and a bench to sit down and take your time.  

All things Michigan in this area.  

Follow the sign for more books, not that I needed the encouragement!

A fantastic children's section on the main level.  

If your daughter doesn't need a book you can at least pick up a princess outfit.  

The guidebook for my journey displayed very prominently at the check-out counter.  

One of several awards for this fine independent bookstore.  

Great selection of greeting cards.  

You can get serious about trying a book with chairs like these.  

Lots of great inventory downstairs.  

Lots of magazines to choose from.  

View from the rear of the store looking towards the front.  

Stephanie on the left and Kirstyn.  Thanks for a great visit!

Stephanie, Kirstyn, and yours truly.  


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