I spent a delightful year working at Village Books and Paper Dreams in Fairhaven, WA. Each day I enjoyed watching our customers sink into a dreamy trance as they scanned shelves for just the right book—a book to transport them to exciting adventures and new perspectives. When a book slid into eager hands, several things happened:

  1. The front cover scan:  Readers do a quick scan of a book’s cover to learn about the tone and contents of the book. Funny? Sweet? Deep-breathing romance? Edgy thriller?
  2. The back cover scan:  Those three paragraphs on the back are a super short synopsis of the entire book. Readers scan back covers to learn what they will experience and they read the endorsements to see what other readers have experienced.
  3. The sneak peeks: Some readers go straight to the first page—or in the case of nonfiction, to the Table of Contents. Other readers flip to the last page and read how the book ends. It sort of takes the mystery out of mysteries and the thrill out of thrillers, but everyone has a method—it’s all good.
  4. The sniff test: Some readers add one or two more steps to book selection. They run a hand over the cover. How does it feel? And a lot of readers open a book to the middle pages and sniff the paper. How does it smell? Whatever works.

Ultimately, the best part of working in a bookstore is handing a new purchase to an eager reader with the knowledge they are on their way to new worlds, new perspectives, and a great adventure.

Buy the book—enjoy the ride!

Cover for Turbulent Waters designed by artist extraordinaire, Andrea Gabriel of Creeksidecollaborative.com  

Click here to preorder your copy today!

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