Sunday, July 17, 2016

Chapter One Bookstore - Ketchum, ID

Chapter One Bookstore - Ketchum, ID
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Besides being a wonderful bookstore, there are two things you need to know about Chapter One Books.  The 1st thing to know is that the store's current location is in a space that used to be a fly-fishing shop.  And since Ernest Hemingway used to live in Ketchum and was an avid fly-fisherman, he would come into this building.  The 2nd thing you need to know is that this is a nationally recognized indie, featured in My Bookstore, by Ron Rice, as one of the country's finest bookstores.  This bookstore was a benchmark for me.  Regular readers know that I'm visiting every indie documented in, My Bookstore, and with my visit to Chapter One, I've now made it to all of the indies featured that are located west of the Mississippi.

I always say that dynamite comes in small packages and that's true of Chapter One.  This 2-level store is on the small side but it's cozy in a very comfortable kind of way.  The store carries both new and used books with most of the new books on the first floor and most of the used books upstairs on the 2nd level.  You'll find chairs on both floors so you can sit and sample a book.  One of the strengths of the store is its offering of books and non-book items related to spirituality and wellness.  This is an important component for Cheryl T., the owner, and she lives these beliefs as an important part of the annual wellness festival.  You'll also find the children's section upstairs on the 2nd floor.  The store has a few sidelines, including greeting cards and the New York Times (I guess the New York Times isn't a sideline but it's sure nice to find it in Ketchum, ID), but you'll mostly find books.

But the most impressive thing to me is the fact that a town of approximately 3000 is able to support two terrific bookstores.  Cheryl and Chapter One have been here a long time, people know her, and I think that's part of the reason for success.  As Beth, one of the booksellers, told me, she is amazed at how often customers ask about a book and Cheryl has it available and stocked in the store.  This is a talent other indie owners have, the ability to know their customers.

Beth and Anna are relatively new at Chapter One as booksellers and they told me as much as they could about the store and the town.  It seems Cheryl has done a good job of finding quality people to be part of a quality store.  I didn't meet Cheryl initially until I returned to the store in the afternoon.  Not knowing when I would get back to Ketchum, I really wanted her autograph for My Bookstore.  Boy, am I glad I waited because not only did I meet her but I also met the author who wrote the essay for My Bookstore about Chapter One Books, Charlie Brandt.  Readers, this has NEVER happened on my bookstore journey, this is a first!  Getting the autograph of the bookstore owner AND the author for the store's entry in My Bookstore is a pinnacle!  After talking to Charlie and meeting Cheryl in person, I can certainly agree with Charlie's words, "she indeed is a beloved and treasured member of the community."  Kudos to you Cheryl and your fine bookstore.  Go to an indie and buy a book.  Bonsoir.

JUST FINISHED:  Our Souls At Night, Kent Haruf.  I've been on a great streak of super books lately and this is another.  Story of a widower and widow who decide to start spending the nights together, innocently, for comfort.  It has varying effects on community members and family members.  This book is outstanding and I highly recommend it.  A quick read and if you haven't read this author yet, I encourage you to do so.  For those of you who have read something by this author, there's a great chapter that makes reference to previous titles that is very creative.  Go to your favorite indie and pick this one up.

CURRENTLY READING:  The Underground Girls Of Kabul, Jenny Nordberg.

RECENTLY PURCHASED:  "I Heard You Paint Houses", Charles Brandt.  The Monkey Wrench Gang, Edward Abbey.

Another exterior view on a wonderful day in Ketchum.  

View looking into the store from the front entrance.  

A great picture of Ernest Hemingway behind the front counter, watching over the store.  

You don't need to go to New York to get your copy of the Times.  

A few of the regional books available.  Tourists should check this section out first.  

A great book display in the main room.  

Hemingway fans won't be disappointed here.  

Up the stairs to the 2nd floor and this is what you'll find.  

Check out the greeting cards on your way upstairs.  

View looking into the 2nd floor of books.  

A portion of the children's section.  

There are an assortment of books and other items for spirituality and wellness.  

View looking back through the 2nd floor of the store.  

A long wall of books.  

Independent bookstores always have great social causes that strengthen community ties.  

With Charlie Brandt on the left and Cheryl in the center.  Not only did Charlie sign, My Bookstore, he also signed my copy of, I Heard You Paint Houses.  It's going to be made into a movie so you need to get it and read it now.  Don't forget to save me a seat at the Oscars, Charlie!  Thanks for a great visit.  

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