Saturday, March 26, 2016

San Marco Books And More - Jacksonville, FL

San Marco Books and More - Jacksonville, FL
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For regular readers of The Indie Bob Spot, this entry will be a review or reminder of one of the best things I get from this journey I'm on.  99% of the people I meet in bookstores are some of the best people around anywhere (I find this thankfully redeeming during this political season).  Before I began this journey I didn't know anything about this wonderful side effect of visiting bookstores.  Readers, I can assure you in regards to this, San Marco Books will not disappoint.  I didn't get to meet any of the owners; Jan, Mike, or Desiree.  But the store was in great hands with Marissa, the staffer I met on this day.  Marissa is the picture of the typical booksellers I meet.  Friendly, conversant, and welcoming.  She was terrific to visit with and patiently took time to talk to me about the store, the owners, and the success of this indie.  Your experience visiting here will be a good one thanks to people like Marissa.

This store has a niche with definite strengths.  The one that jumped out at me most was its inventory of classics.  If you're a lover of the classics, you won't want to miss this bookstore.  You'll find them offered in attractive leather bound editions as well as hardbacks and paperbacks.  This was what I noticed first but San Marco Books is also very strong with children's books and classics, local and regional books, military and history, art, and cooking.  There are a great variety of sidelines, all mostly with literary themes.  Items such as scarves, candles, socks, matchboxes, and the Papyrus line of gifts are here.  There are also greeting cards and lots of sidelines for the kids too.

The store has been around for about 40 years, the entire time in its current location in a small historic business district of Jacksonville.  Jan, Mike, and their daughter, Desiree have been the owners for about 20 of those years.  It's easily accessible for foot traffic, making it a hit with locals and regular customers, and parking is free right on the street.  The small, picturesque park in the center of the district is the site of weekly story times for the kids, led by Desiree.  The one-level store offers new and used books, but most of the inventory are used.  They acquire their books in a variety of ways, including estate sales or on vacations to other parts of the country.  San Marco Books does occasional author events usually featuring authors with local ties.

Going to the Sunshine State?  Make sure when going to Jacksonville you swing through this attractive and historic business district and pay a visit to San Marco Books and the wonderful people you'll meet there.  You won't regret it.  Go to an indie and buy a book.  Bonsoir.

JUST FINISHED:  Year Of Wonders, Geraldine Brooks.  A customer I met in one of the bookstores I was visiting raved about Geraldine Brooks.  This is my first by this author and it won't be my last.  As I look at her other books it seems she writes mostly historical fiction.  This one was about the plague in a small village during the year 1666.  Even though I enjoyed this one, I think some of her others may be even better.

CURRENTLY READING:  Shantaram, Gregory David Roberts.

One of the front window displays.  

View looking through the store from the front entrance.  

Looking to the left from the front entrance.  Lots of leather-bound editions.  

Lots of gift wrap to choose from.  

A timely display of Easter books for children.  

A portion of the children's area.  

There are lots of literary themed items here and these are just a few.  

Some of the local and regional selections.  

Always one of my favorite views in a bookstore.  

A few of the greeting cards available.  

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

We could all use this sign!

These are only a few of the Papyrus line of items here.  

With Marissa, one of the fine booksellers at San Marco Books & More.  Thanks for a great visit.  

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