Portico Managing Editor, Amanda Manning has penned a piece on a handful of our local bookstores. Her article is slated to run in the September issue. Manning has only called Birmingham home for a few years, so she graciously answered a few quick questions for me about her article and other bookish goodness.
Q: Why a piece on local bookstores?
I’m a Mississippi girl originally, and grew up going to Lemuria and then Square Books, two wonderful independent bookstores. I’ve always had a softspot for these places, and love the feeling of stepping into a local bookstore. I could stay for hours.
I had noticed that Birmingham seemed to have so many and just wanted to do a piece on the places and people behind them. So basically, I was indulging a guilty pleasure but wanting to put these places in front of people again.
Q: What did you enjoy most about exploring the shops in Birmingham?
I loved getting to know the personality of each place and the personalities of the people running/owning them. I only regret that I couldn’t go to every bookstore in the area. If I could have, I would have. And I know there are so so many more places that would fit nicely into the story that have been fixtures in Birmingham, so please accept my advance apologies if I did not make it to certain stores. Maybe we can do a sequel one day…
Q: What are you reading now? Did you pick up any finds while composing your piece?
I am reading The Memory Keeper’s Daughter right now, by Kim Edwards, and I just finished Trail of Crumbs by Kim Sunee. I didn’t pick up any new books while researching, only because I have to finish my pile of books before I can allow myself to purchase any more! But I plan on returning to local stores as soon as I can. I did see plenty to purchase! And I of course found great new stores to add to my list…but I can’t pick any favorites. I’m just excited about becoming a regular at each place.