Thursday, December 3, 2015

Prince Books - Norfolk, VA

Prince Books - Norfolk, VA
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Well Readers, I've finally done it.  As of this entry I've visited 140 something independent bookstores all over the country.  But this visit was my first indie in the state of Virginia.  If all of Virginia's bookstores are as nice as this one, I have a great journey ahead.  Prince Books just set a high bar for all the others.

Regular readers are all aware of the joy I've had meeting the many owners and booksellers along my journey of bookstores.  One of the other benefits I've enjoyed is finding out about regional authors all over the country, many who deserve national attention for their work.  At Prince Books, not only did I find out about a regional author but I met one.  I happened into Prince Books on the day of an author event and had the good fortune to meet Joyce Parsons, who was signing her new book, Portrait Of A Town Cape Charles, 1940-1960, documenting some of the town's history.  She was wonderful to talk to and if anyone ever needs any other reason to visit an indie, meeting interesting authors can be added to the list.

I lucked into this encounter but you don't have to have any luck to meet Sarah P., the fine owner of Prince Books, or some of her delightful booksellers like Linsley and Angela.  All three of these ladies were so nice to talk to and meet during my visit and share with me a few things about the store and the area.  Clearly, Sarah knows what she's doing here.  She's been with this indie for about 30 years, a remarkable record for any bookstore.  The store is neatly organized offering all new books as well as a few sidelines.  The greeting cards always sell well and most recently the little stuffed mermaid dolls have been a good sideline.  Sarah shares her space with the cafe, located to the left after entering the store.  She sublets that space to that business which would seem to me to be a good arrangement for both businesses.

The store attracts customers from all groups of people.  Locals, tourists, people coming and going from cruise ships, military families, and some from the local colleges, Old Dominion and Norfolk State University.  Across one street is a large Marriott and coming soon across another street is a large Hilton.  Sarah isn't sure how that will impact business but I think it will be a positive.  I think the store has a good location in downtown Norfolk but you will have to pay for parking in one of the city ramps (your walk will be no more than a couple of blocks).

It has come to my attention that even though this indie has been around for 30 years, many aren't familiar with it.  Now you know about it!  Grab a friend, take a trip, and visit this terrific bookstore.  You'll enjoy the store and the friendly people who work there which means a great bookstore experience.  Go to an indie and buy a book.  Bonsoir.

CURRENTLY READING:  The Secret Game, Scott Ellsworth.

RECENTLY PURCHASED:  Portrait Of A Town Cape Charles, 1940-1960, Patricia Joyce Parsons.

Exterior front entrance.  The bookstore is located in a beautiful building.  

Go ahead and have 3 or 4.  It will make it easier to buy a lot of books!

Looking through the store from the front entrance.  

Looking into the cafe, located to the left of the front entrance.  

Looking to the right of the bookstore from the front entrance.  

A few of the greeting cards available.  

Great places to sit and try out a book.  

A few of the magazines and journals available.  

Another view looking toward the back of the store.  Notice the children's department.  

A partial view of the children's department.  

An attractive display of bestsellers.  

When you hit the bathroom you'll have lots to look at it.  I cannot vouch, however, for the women's bathroom since I did not get a visual.  

View looking from the back of the store toward the front entrance.  

These mermaids have been selling well recently.  

I had a wonderful time meeting author Patricia Joyce Parsons who was in the store on the day of my visit.  

With Sarah P., the fine owner at Prince Books.  Thanks for a great visit.  

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