Friday, September 3, 2021

Word After Word Bookshop - Truckee, CA

Word After Word Bookshop, Truckee, CA


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Shortly after I began this journey I started seeing messages on my news feed about this new bookstore in Truckee, CA.  I'd continue to see more and more pictures and read more about it and as I did so my mind was made up that I would eventually get here.  I also knew my visit would be better if planned in the summer instead of the winter because of all the snow in this region.  Today was that day and the dream was overwhelmingly fulfilled by seeing a beautiful bookstore and its absolutely delightful owner and staff.

The store you see today is nothing like the one it was originally.  Word After Word was in a 900 square foot space just down the street and then over a year ago moved into the spacious store you see in the pictures below.  As Andie, the owner, told me, they had a little stress when the store closed during the pandemic but it was also a time that allowed for some organization of the new space.  And how did they survive their pandemic closure?  With the strong support of local regulars who flooded the store with online orders, preorders, and knocking on the door orders!  The store did remarkably well with an incredible million dollars in sales last year.  This is even more impressive when Shelby, a store manager, told me the ratio of customers is 80/20, tourists to locals.  

Word After Word has the perfect location on Donner Pass Rd, the main street through town.  Truckee is a very pedestrian friendly town so foot traffic to the store is huge.  The main floor offers a large space of all new books with multiple sidelines.  Bookstore swag, designer reading glasses, and greeting cards just to name a few.  The rear room of the main floor is home to a well organized and beautiful children's area.  The basement level is where you'll find Rock Cellar Records which offers a good inventory of music on vinyl, new and used.  You'll also find bargain books and used books.  Rock Cellar Records is not a separate business but is differentiated by its name.

When this store reopened after the pandemic it did so with certain requirements; masks, social distancing, and limited customers.  Like other bookstores, a few people got a little snarky about the masks.  How did they handle this?  Andie had her son and some friends stationed as bouncers outside the front door, just like a bar.  Bookstore bouncers, I love it!

Andie, Shelby, and Renae are as welcoming and kind as just about everyone else I meet on this journey.  When you visit this region near Lake Tahoe and need a break from kayaking or snow skiing, this is the place to visit.  Go to an indie and buy a book.  Bonsoir.

JUST FINISHED:  The Monk Of Mokha, Dave Eggers.  True story of a young Yemeni American who can't find his passion or his calling.  Finally, with shared roots in Yemen and America, he embarks on a journey to learn everything about coffee and hopes to start his own business by importing the commodity from Yemen, a historically rich region for coffee growing.  But his journeys are challenged by violence and civil war in the mideast and lack of funds.  Really enjoyed this one.  Recommended. 

CURRENTLY READING:  True Grit, Charles Portis. 

RECENTLY PURCHASED:  True Grit, Charles Portis.  The Starless Sea, Erin Morganstern.  Not purchased but gifted, my very own Word After Word t-shirt.  Thanks Andie. 


Beautiful exterior on a beautiful day. 

A great place to sit on a sunny day in front of a shiny display window. 

View looking straight into the store from the front entrance. 

View looking to the left from the front entrance. 

Look to the right after entering and you'll see a few of the many sidelines offered. 

Any customer looking for outdoor guide books will be set. 

Lots of Word After Word baseball caps to choose from. 

Table display of new releases. 

A beautiful, long wall of bookshelves. 

Some of the staff favorites uniquely displayed on this ladder. 

I always hang on to summer with every fingernail I've got so I don't think it's ever too late for a beach read. 

The store has many attractive table displays. 

Look for this every summer. 

Consider joining the WAW Book Club. 

Just a few of the greeting cards available. 

The large wall mirror on the right wall really gives the store a spacious look.  If you look carefully at the mirror you'll see the photographer. 

Take your child to the back of the store and enter this room. 

Overview of the terrific children's room. 

Another angle of the children's room looking from the back toward the front. 

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

As you head down the stairs, this is your view into Rock Cellar Records. 

Another view into Rock Cellar Records. 

Looking for an artist on vinyl and a book to go with it?  This is a great display.

Book favorites upstairs, music favorites downstairs. 

Can't find a book or music that you like?  Proceed to games!

With Andie in the center and Shelby on the right, two of the fine people you'll meet at Word After Word Bookshop.  Thanks for a great visit. 

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