A Look at Chapter Two Books and the Charm of Used Literature

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A Look at Chapter Two Books and the Charm of Used Literature


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Any new addition to Spring Street in Williamstown is a welcome one, and one that brings vibrant ideas and – quite literally – page-turners is an added bonus. Replacing the recently closed Subway, Chapter Two Books is nestled between the Cottage and Sushi Thai Garden. While Williams did just open a new, updated bookstore a couple doors down Chapter Two Books is different. With all proceeds benefiting the Milne & Joyce Williamstown public library, this used bookstore sells lightly used books and all employees are volunteers. Walking into the new store, it has the same feel as its goods: worn in, comfortable, and with stories deeper than the ones on the surface.

There’s something magical about holding a book that countless others have held, ready to embark on the same journey but with perhaps a very different destination. No two people will ever read a book the same way, which is what gives literature magic and power. Chapter Two Books allows readers to experience books in an entirely unique manner: the physical book itself has been on its own journey, a journey which perhaps guides how the narrative within is interpreted. Does reading a book in the winter rather than the spring change the book’s message? On a beach or in a forest? Perhaps it does.

Unique, quirky books can also be found on the shelves of Chapter Two Books. One Echo staff member recently picked up a book for a Christmas present for his dad: a complete guide of fly fishing, circa 1970. Books like these are hard to find anywhere else. Chapter Two Books allows for otherwise passed over books to find new homes, where the readers can find interest in subjects that are nowadays not as sought out. And, financially wise, the books sold there have much more reasonable prices than their counterpart up the street. Even hardcover books sell for as cheap as five dollars, with the same content as the same, newer book.

The atmosphere of Chapter two books also adds to the enticing nature already cultivated. Large windows allow bright light to stream in, making the bookstore a haven of cheeriness in typical New England winters. While not the largest place in the world, you can guarantee that every possible inch is crammed with books, just as a bookstore should be. Tucked away in one corner of the store between two shelves is a chalkboard with favorite quotes from literature of all time. The unexpected intimacy of sharing a snippet of a novel is brought to light as these quotes bring customers together, although anonymous. These quotes can also remind readers of old favorite books to revisit.

Stop by Chapter Two Books today to support a local, up-and-coming business that is certain to have a lasting effect on the inherently literary town of Williamstown. Maybe you’ll find a book about your own uncommon interests, or rediscover an old favorite. But each book is guaranteed to have a story within a story, making the read all the more special.