Wednesday, June 5, 2013

The Village Bookstore, Warrenton, Missouri

Valerie Hays, owner
The Village Bookstore
Warrenton, Missouri

It is always a great pleasure for me to visit used bookstores on my travels. I was not disappointed when I walked into The Village Bookstore in down-town Warrenton, Missouri last weekend.

The bookstore is well lit and not only services those who like a good literary bargain, but also has a coffee bar, comfortable couches, and tables scattered about for those who want to linger. 

The owner, Valerie Hays, is a woman with a welcoming smile. She told me that she opened the business three years ago. It sprang from her involvement with Mercy's Hope, a program that she and her husband started in Githunguri, Kenya. There they are working with an orphanage that serves over 50 children and one of their main missions is to make sure every child gets an education.  In the store, she also sells jewelry and bags made by women of the village.

I had a ball browsing her collection of over 20,000 books. In addition to the regular fiction and non-fiction sections, she has long shelves filled with first editions and vintage books. 

I was fascinated with this mural (painted by someone who works in the store) showing elephants walking across the Kenyan plain. Quite an eye-catcher, don't you think?

As June was Customer Appreciation Month I got a discount on the six books that I bought. Lucky me! I will tell you about those tomorrow.


  1. Oh, I would love this bookstore, Belle. One of the few independent booksellers in this area isn't to far from our house and also carries similar jewelry and such. Hmmm. I should check it out soon and see if they will appreciate me as a customer.

    I'd love to find a vintage copy of Dandelion Summer.

    1. Penny, I am sure your local bookstore would be thrilled to have you! I love chatting with the owners of used bookstores. They usually have interesting stories to tell.

  2. I think used bookstores are some of my very favorite places, and I need to make it a priority to visit them when I am visiting another town. This one sounds like a real find. Glad you enjoyed the visit, and came home with some bookish loot.

    1. Hi Kathy. Well, I based an entire vacation, my Grand Southern Literary Tour, on visiting literary sites and bookstores! It is so enlightening to see what readers in other parts of the country have culled from their shelves. And the store owners are always a delight to chat with.