My faith in the small indie bookstore world has been partially restored. While still in mourning for the death of my favourite bookstore, which I wrote about a few days ago, I decided the best cure for my depression was to scout out some other book-buying options in the area. Saturday morning dawned cold and gray, which pretty much matched our general mood. As the toddler raged in his second tantrum of the morning, I packed the family into the car and we headed for the village of Williamsford, which, as rumour had it, is home to a great bookstore.
My expectations were far exceeded. The bookstore turned out to be an absolute delight. Opened only eighteen months ago, it is housed in the historic old mill, built right out over rushing water with spectacular scenery from every window. The building is 160 years old, constructed of massive roughly-hewn timbers, with plank floors and a wood-burning stove on the main floor. We were greeted by the smell of woodsmoke as we entered, along with tantalizing aromas of food coming from the kitchen that created the greatest tuna melt I’ve ever had.
Tables for the café are spread out all over the main floor, interspersed with well-organized bookshelves of mostly new books. Up the stairs, however, I discovered two more floors of used books, all in good condition, packed into every possible space. Books lined the walls, quite literally from floor to ceiling. It looked like paradise to me. Thanks to the abundance of toys to distract small children, my husband and I were able to enjoy a lengthy, peaceful visit that resulted in several pleasing purchases: I with the next few Diana Gabaldon novels (I’m still obsessed), my husband with “Modern Shotgunning” (he’s a city boy learning how to hunt), our son with the good old classic “Zoom at Sea.”
It was a happier ride home than on the way there. We made another quick stop at the Williamsford Pie Company. (You’ve got to love any town that has a pie company of its own.) So, it was a successful mission. I did find another bookstore that it quite wonderful and will be returning to support it and do my part to keep it alive, not to mention satisfy my craving for constant new reads.