“Part of the dream of Northshire Bookstore, for me, is the attempt to add substance and meaning to people’s lives. Whether this is in the form of humor, exploration, entertainment, learning, serendipity, fun, or personal opening, we strive to provide the space, selection and people to help create moments of discovery and meaning. …Last week we had an expert 2 year old come into the store and declare, “This is the most BEAUTIFUL bookstore in the WORLD!” That does not happen online.”
“Any independent bookstore is a treasure, but this is a very special place.”
Part of the pleasure of being on a writers’ retreat this weekend was the chance to visit the magical Northshire Bookstore in Manchester, Vermont. What a wonderful place to browse, dream, and buy books! Beautifully stocked, with staff-recommendations galore, nooks and crannies, and a rambling yet well-organized feeling to it, this is one of the most visually appealing independent bookstores I’ve had the fun of rambled around.
There are artfully arrayed displays devoted to themes from gardening and Vermont to Buddhism and meditations that encourage an in-depth browse of a subject, which I enjoyed wandering through. There are used books to thumb through, looking for that special treasure — one of which I found for myself!
There are T-shirts adorned with classic book covers, journals, cards, gifts, and a cozy cafe. I joked to one of my writing buddies that you could practically live in the Northshire Bookstore because you can find just about everything a bibliophile needs to be happy: endless books, comfy chairs, cozy nooks to curl up in, a café with great food and coffee, chocolate bars, journals to pen pensive thoughts in, and tons of games and puzzles to keep you amused. Occupying a huge 19th century clapboard house on Main Street in Manchester and sheltered by the Green Mountains, Northshire is as much a community center as a bookstore. What a wonderful, vibrant place — and how encouraging to see it thriving. Write on!