The one thing Dawsonville bibliophile Beau Bishop loves more than anything else about a bookstore?
As he spoke the words, a handful of nearby customers also perusing Saturday at the grand opening of Another Chapter Bookstore nodded or muttered “yes” in agreement.
Bishop was among many others who showed up for the celebration, which marked the opening of a bookstore owned and staffed by several employees of Humpus Bumpus.
The now-defunct business closed its doors in August 2017 after nearly 30 years in operation and, according to Another Chapter owner Katie Anderson, left many customers scratching their heads and searching for another store like it.
Located in the Old Towne Shopping Center in Cumming, Another Chapter Bookstore aims to offer customers a similar experience to what they came to know from Humpus Bumpus.
“We’re keeping all the old traits,” Anderson said. “We believe if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it. And so we’re continuing to offer great customer service … going out of our way to help customers young and old to find what they’re looking for.”
While browsing the store Saturday, Bishop wasn’t looking for anything specific, but he found so much.
“What I love about bookstores is this,” Bishop said, hoisting a how-to survival book that featured everything from fire starting skills to rabbit-dressing methods. “You can sit here and browse through this book that just sort of caught your eye, and you may not even want to buy this book but at the same time something might spark your interest, and you might end up wanting to take it home after all.”
Added Bishop: “It’s hard to explain for people who are used to just looking stuff up online, but it’s … it’s a book.”
Joe Stern, who walked the aisles just a few feet away, said he liked the new store.
“It’s nice. It’s up and coming, you know what I mean?” said the Alpharetta resident. “Coming to a place like this, you’re supporting the local economy, and you can actually touch and feel the books and see what they’re all about.”
Stern said he also liked the bargain pricing.
Anderson said the key to running a bookstore well is paying attention to customers like Bishop and Stern and understanding their interests.
“We get to know our customers so well, and we try to remember what types of books or what authors they’re usually looking for,” Anderson said.
She also tries to put herself in the shoes of her customers — book lovers and haters alike. She said she can see both sides as a former non-reader.
“I didn’t always love reading books,” Anderson said. “But a while back my daughter was diagnosed with dyslexia, and I started helping her start to read … now, I have over 350 books in my collection. And now, she reads too. I used to be the kind of person who didn’t care that much about reading. And now — “
At this, her husband, Tommy Anderson, interrupts: “Now, all she does is read.”
The store is at 216 Atlanta Road, Suite F, Cumming.