Sunday, July 23, 2017

Narberth Bookshop - Narberth, PA

Narberth Bookshop, Narberth, PA
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If you were going to start your own football team, who would you pick to be the quarterback?  Tom Brady?  Aaron Rodgers?  No doubt you would want the best.  That's exactly what has happened at the Narberth Bookshop in Narberth, PA.  A woman who honed her bookstore craft at one of the country's finest, Three Lives Bookstore in NYC, finally decided to take the plunge and open her own.  She's extremely knowledgeable about the business and her eyes are wide open about the pitfalls.  But if anyone is qualified to own and operate a successful bookstore it's this woman, Ellen T.  Narberth Books is part of a wave of new indies opening all over the country and like the other newbies I've visited, they're off to a great start.

How great a start, you ask?  The store has only been open 8 months and the holidays were phenomenal in terms of business.  But this was no accident since Ellen knew exactly where she wanted to open a bookstore, in Narberth and in the downtown area.  An attractive location for a community surrounded by colleges and a citizenry made up of many cultured and literary people.  The newness of the store makes it unknown to many people, even in the nearby region.  But the word will get out about how nice this place is and business and the customers follow.  

The Narberth Bookshop offers all new books, densely but neatly packed into less than 1000 square feet.  Greeting cards are really the only sideline of note here.  This is a serious bookstore and it is serious about the books.  Ellen's experience means that the store is very well curated with a great inventory.  The bookshelves are a beautiful dark brown wood and all were custom made for the store.  The interior paint and designs are outstanding and you can tell that a lot of thought and work went into this space.  Ellen is a self-proclaimed neatnik and it shows in the organization of this store.

The tiny store was very busy on the day of my visit and yet Ellen took time to tell me so much about her store, business, and experiences.  She, along with Julia and Jenny, two of the booksellers, are one of the reasons I visit these places.  Great people in a great store.

So this place is new and some of you in the area haven't checked it out yet.  What gives?  What are you waiting for?  You're fortunate to have this gem in your midst so plan to take a trip to the Narberth Bookshop.  It will be the first of many visits.  The future is bright here and you don't want to be late to the party.  Go to an indie and buy a book.  Bonsoir.

JUST FINISHED:  Freddy Goes To Florida, Walter R. Brooks.  Freddy is a pig who lives on Mr. Bean's farm and he along with some of the other animals decide they're tired of the cold winters and want to go to Florida for the winter.  The story tells of their adventures going and then returning to the farm.  They encounter robbers and alligators as part of their adventure.  The Freddy series consists of 20+ books written from the 1920s-50s by the same author who wrote short stories that became the inspiration for the Mr. Ed television show.  Great reading for ages 9-90.  I'll be looking for more Freddy books.  Recommended.

CURRENTLY READING:  The Bottoms, Joe R. Lansdale.  

Another great exterior view.  

This old clock is on the corner near the bookstore.  When you see this, you'll know you're close.  

This is a great exterior window display.  All books, all faced out.  This place is serious about books.  

View looking into the store from the front entrance.  Shrewd readers may recognize the celebrity in purple.  Yes, that's my mom.  

A fine assortment of greeting cards located near the front entrance.  

On the backside of the exterior window display is another display on the inside of the store, all covers facing out.  

If you're in the Narberth area, I strongly encourage you to take advantage of this.  Every indie should craft something similar that would work for their store.  Shop local!

Ellen and her staff put a lot of time into the store's interior, including a great quote creatively displayed.  

A portion of the children's section.  

Another example of the great artistic work that helps give the store such a great atmosphere.  

More creative interior art work.  

A few of the staff picks displayed on a door.  

A great place to sit and sample a book that you can get and then purchase a tote bag for all your others! 

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

View of a long wall of bookshelves.  

Find the newly released paperback version of MY BOOKSTORE.  

What wonderful people I get to meet on this journey.  L-R: yours truly, Ellen, Ron Rice, Ron's son Jake.  Thanks for a great visit.  

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