Cape Cod's Indie Bookstores 'Know What You Want'

There are "a dozen or more independent bookstores on Cape Cod, and a visit to any one of them this summer--to pick up a good beach read, scope out local history, or settle in for story time--will quickly dispel any notion that books or bookstores have gone out of style," the Boston Globe reported.

The success of Titcomb's Bookshop in East Sandwich is based on a simple formula: "Carefully paying attention to what our customers are looking for," said Nancy Titcomb, while daughter Vicky Titcomb added: "We know our customers, we know the type of books they like, and we watch out for them."

The Brewster Book Store "is a bright, colorful warren of small rooms that draw a visitor from the entrance all the way to a cozy space at the back," the Globe noted. When John and Nancy Landon opened the store in 1982, children's books were Nancy's passion, according to Val Arroyo, who visited the store as a child and now works there. Nancy died in 2011, but the store continues to take special pride in its kids' book collection.  

At Where the Sidewalk Ends Bookstore & Children's Annex in Chatham, Joanne Doggart and Caitlin Doggart-Bernal "have crafted a big, bright airy space designed for book lovers of every age." Manager Joanie Goodrow said, "We try to keep it real, and we try to keep it friendly."

Eight Cousins in Falmouth "began as a children's bookstore but today is about 50-50 children's and adult offerings. Co-owner Sara Hines, who handles children's book buying and marketing, described the titles on a display promoting "beach reads" as "books that are not too heavy but not too light.... It's like a New England beach--it requires a little bit of effort."

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