My favorite book store is not Barnes and Noble, not Amazon, and not Borders. My very favorite place to browse through books is Sam's Books which is located in the Oldsmar Flea Market. Sam's Books is owned and operated by Sharon Micek. She has been in business there for 21 years! I am telling you that there is no reason to pay retail for books, because she has what you are looking for!
She mostly specializes in children's books, but she has something for every age group there. I love the flea market anyhow, and when I discovered this gem of a shop about 8 years ago, I was hooked!
It is insanely packed from floor to ceiling, wall to wall in a maze of book shelves, and plenty of chairs to sit on while you browse through a book or two (or 100). I have been a regular customer of hers for years, and if I only know a partial title of a book, she will find it. And when I like a particular author, she will gather those books for me as well as make recommendations for other books that are similar. She is familiar with illustrators, book genres, and writing styles of certain authors.
If you are a fan of books, this place will make your head explode! If you decide to visit Sam's Books (and I recommend you do), plan on spending about an hour there. At least. Bring your kids and let them pick out some books. They are more likely to read when they are able to pick out their own book from such a wide variety of books. And they can get a large bag full of books for the same price as one book from Barnes and Noble.
Also, I want to add, that Sharon is a pretty cool lady. I always have enjoyed my chit chats with her over the years.
Both my kids are stellar readers and I credit the large selection of reading material that I have always provided being part of the reason. The other reason is my kids have big brains.
Okay, now here is the part that I encourage you to shop local mom and pop shops: Do it! It's so important to support small businesses, especially come holiday time! Most of the books that Sharon carries are only a buck or two each! Kids chapter books for a fraction of the cost of retail, you just can't go wrong!
Sam's Books is located in the Oldsmar Flea Market, 180 Racetrack Rd. (on the corner of Hillsborough Ave), She is there Thurs-Sun, and she will ship. Her number is 813-818-1884 or you can email her with any questions, firstname.lastname@example.org
Are you a book hoarder too? Are your books spilling from the shelves, piling up on your nightstand? Do tell!
***For the next month, I will be featuring small businesses to support for the holiday shopping season. Most will be online stores, which will make your holiday shopping less stressful and chaotic.***