27th Letter Books Opens in Detroit, Mich.
Founders Andrew and Erin Pineda officially opened their doors at 3546 Michigan Ave. on June 12 and have brought in Jazmine Cooper as general manager and co-owner and Jake Spease as co-owner and art director.
The space, which previously housed an art gallery and workshop called Holding House, has both retail and event space as well as a yard and a lower level with room for workshops. The building was already ADA accessible, which was a big draw for the Pinedas. As the store finds its footing, they plan to bring in more inventory and build out the basement.
27th Letter carries titles for children and adults, with a curated selection focusing on diverse and international authors, books from small presses and other work that may generally fly under the radar. The store will also feature space for local artists to sell their work.
|Drew and Erin Pineda|
The bookstore team has already started hosting events, with storytime sessions on Saturday mornings and adult book club meetings on the last Wednesday of every month. They have other community events in mind, including art classes and writing groups.
In 2019 the Pinedas received a $100,000 grant from winning the Comerica Hatch Detroit contest. They continued to look for a space for the bookstore while hosting pop-ups and events and working their respective day jobs. Then the pandemic hit, pop-up appearances were canceled and the Pinedas had to focus entirely on their day jobs. They spoke to Cooper and Spease frequently throughout the search and gradually the idea of being business partners grew. They found their future space not long after Spease and Cooper joined the team.
Erin Pineda told Model D that the space at 3546 Michigan Ave. was the "first space we'd been in where we felt we could grow into all the different visions we have for the store."