Friday, December 15, 2017

Paperbacks & Pieces - Winona, MN

Paperbacks & Pieces, Winona, MN
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This is one of those bookstores that I've known about for awhile and just hadn't visited until now.  From the outside, this bookstore has a very unassuming and simple appearance.  From the outside, you wouldn't know that this is a successful, 40-year business that has deep roots in the community and continues to show positive results.  From the outside, you wouldn't know that inside are two of the nicest people you could ever hope to meet and who are able to give you lots of recommendations for your next book.  Readers, this is the classic, "don't judge a book by its cover," bookstore.

Paperbacks And Pieces is located on one of the busiest streets through Winona making it a very visible location.  Of its 40 years in business, its been in this location for the last 13.  It's also a great location because the owner, Shelley O., owns the building and the upstairs apartment, a great benefit for any indie owner.  The very spacious one-level store offers a variety of new and used books with most of the new ones located near the front of the store.  They offer store credit or cash for the books that customers bring in for trade.  There are a few sidelines available including greeting cards, candles, and journals to name a few.  The greeting cards sell especially well.  I really like the events space they have in the back of the store.  Lots of space for book clubs and the monthly Art Of Words, an event that has a variety of speakers.  Shelley is hoping to increase the events schedule and I always think this is good if bookstores can do it.  Lastly, I thought the children's section was decorated and presented in an attractive manner.

Sadly, I must share that Shelley is actively looking for a buyer for the bookstore (ok, not sadly for Shelley but sad for those of us who've met her and enjoy her presence in the store).  It's certainly not due to poor business because things are going very well here.  But, after 20 years owning the business she's decided its time for a new chapter in her life.  Congratulations Shelley!  Opportunity is knocking readers, answer the call.

Shelley and Crystal are super people to project that independent bookstore spirit.  Pay them a visit and enjoy the same wonderful experience I did.  Go to an indie and buy a book.  Bonsoir.

JUST FINISHED:  Going Into Town, Roz Chast.  This author is a cartoonist for the New Yorker magazine and I absolutely love everything she does.  This book is a graphic novel about NYC, and in addition to being hilarious and featuring Chast's quirky sketches, it actually has some good advice for people visiting The Big Apple.  Even if you don't read graphic novels, I recommend every single one of this author's work.  And it is a very quick read.  Highly recommended.  

CURRENTLY READING:  Brave Deeds, David Abrams.  

RECENTLY PURCHASED:  Not purchased, but gifted.  Slider, Pete Hautman.  Thanks Shelley.

This building has only been three businesses during the course of its life.  As you look at this storefront, you might be able to envision that it once was a small grocery store.  

Interested parties should contact the store and owner ASAP.  

View looking into the store from the front entrance.  

Some great deals on Christmas books located in this bin near the front entrance.  

Find this display for more great deals.  

Kids will like this display, also located near the front of the store.  

A long aisle of spinners.  

Praire Lights customers in Iowa City will be very familiar with this author.  

A great place to sit in the front of the store for browsing books or watching traffic.  

Nice display of popular books.  

Just like this great bookstore!

A variety of sidelines.  These can be found throughout the store.  

Tired of waiting for a book on hold at the library?  Consider a rental.  Great titles available.  

These are the terms, very reasonable.  

If you know any Star Trek fans, send them to this store.  

Another great place to stretch out with a book.  Please, at least pretend to be reading.  

I love this events space located in the back of the store.  If you have a book club, you should consider meeting here.  

Looking into the children's section.  I love the long, slinky weiner dog hanging from the ceiling.   

Another view into the children's section.  

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

These are still a thing.  

This is what the bookstore looked like before it was a bookstore.  

Every.  Single.  Bookstore.  

Only in an independent bookstore.  I believe that the pictured book is the first of a multi-set volume.  

Every year the store does some kind of book tree in the front window.  

With Crystal on the left and Shelley on the right, holding part time Indie Bob Spot staffer Gettysburg T.  Thanks for a great visit.    

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