Tuesday, March 29, 2022

Prologue Books & Wine - Charles City, IA

Prologue Books & Wine, Charles City, IA

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When I prepare to visit a bookstore I try to keep my expectations neutral and my mind open to anything.  However, when I visit an indie in a small town I worry about the store's business health and if it has a large enough customer base to support it.  If I had any of those thoughts before visiting Prologue Books & Wine in Charles City, IA, they were immediately dashed when I entered the store's beautiful space.  This store is worthy of any location in the country.  A neighborhood in St. Louis, a borough in NYC, or a hip section of the California Bay area.  For the people in Charles City and the surrounding communities, all they have to do is go to Main St. and walk into a store that completes the Charles City business community, finally, an independent bookstore.  

Darci T., the owner, and her team have done an absolutely remarkable job of turning a space that sat empty for 10 years (as Darci told me, it was a dump which makes the transformation that much more impressive) into an attractive bookstore that will become the envy of many similar small towns.  The store has only been open 4 short months and the results are outstanding.  In fact, Darci told me that the store's business has exceeded expectations.  Way to go Charles City and congratulations Darci!

Prologue offers all new books along with some sidelines including greeting cards, buttons, candy club candy, and bookstore swag to name a few.  Darci's original plan for the wine was to offer it while doing events or readings.  Surprisingly, people are enjoying the wine while book browsing.  She also thought that children's books would sell well but instead has discovered that adult books and poetry are doing even better than the children's books.  

The cherry on top of this wonderful store though is the vitality of its owner.  Darci gives this store its personality and its easy to see why it already has a devoted core of regulars.  She's knowledgeable, conversant, and will easily be able to recommend your next book.  In fact, if you're in the Charles City area consider joining the store book club which will be starting soon.

I can't believe there are people in the community who don't know about Prologue Books & Wine yet.  Really?  A highly visible, beautiful storefront on Main St. and you don't know about it?  Consider this your wake-up call.  Find out what all the regular customers have discovered.  A terrific bookstore with an energetic owner that will turn YOU into a regular too.  An experience you won't find online.  Go to an indie and buy a book.  Bonsoir.

CURRENTLY READING:  A Column Of Fire, Ken Follett. 

RECENTLY PURCHASED:  Beheld, Tarashea Nesbit.  


Beautiful storefront located in the heart of downtown. 

View looking into the store from the front entrance.  Just imagine what this space must've looked like, sitting empty for about 10 years until Darci and her team transformed it into this gorgeous interior. 


Four steps into the store and you'll see this educational display of books. 


A very unique way to display the buttons available. 


Interested in cooking?  Find this display. 


Entering the store and curling around to the left for this view of the children's section.  Notice the small reading nook underneath the steps.  Nice!


Another view of the children's reading nook and some nice places to sit. 


This chair is in a primo location right by the large front window.  Have a seat, sip some wine, and keep an eye on things. 


Another overview of the children's section and beyond. 


This picture really doesn't give the perspective that you see when you view it in person.  This doorway is for tiny people to come into the children's section.  It is in the entryway of the main entrance.  Kids can bypass the door for big people and walk right into their area. 


Hitchers with twister pop for the kids.  You might have to get one just to see what it is. 


A nice long wall of books on the left side of the store. 


A portion of the poetry available.  This genre has been selling very well. 


The store is well-stocked with Diana Gabaldon's Outlander series.  The readers who enjoy this are fanatical about it.  My Outlander friends will remind you to be sure and start with the first book in the series. 


On top of the bookshelves you'll see framed poster-sized prologues from different books.  Can you identify this one?


This is one beautiful setting.  Comfy chairs, wine, a book, AND a fireplace?  Yes please. 


Since certain people have recently gone into a hissy fit about banned books, do you know what I've noticed?  Every indie offers banned books and usually a dedicated section to display them. 


New to the store.  Give them a try and tell Darci what you think. 


As with just about any other indie, creativity can be found throughout the store. 


Find your bookstore swag and some of the other sidelines in this section. 


I love that this store has so many comfortable places to sit.  Is it because of the wine or the books?!


Only a sample of the wine inventory. 


Bring your friends, have a seat here and share your books. 



Relevant books for our times.      
Overview of the store looking from the back toward the front. 


Attractive Prologue glasses ONLY available here. 
With Darci, the fine owner at Prologue Books & Wine.  Thanks for a great visit. 

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