For Thanksgiving, I was in Charleston, South Carolina. I went to some southern-inspired restaurants, some that reminded me of home, and I stopped by the legendary Blue Bicycle Books! It is a local indie bookstore that sells used, rare, and local books. For those who don't know, Blue Bicycle Books is also the bookstore for YALL Fest, the YA book festival that takes place in November. It just completed its ninth year, I believe. The festival takes over Upper King Street, and lots of popular authors come such as Holly Black, Sarah J. Maas, and Angie Thomas. It is also a place where you can meet some of the people who run the YA divisions of their publishing house. Some imprints host meet and greets, others have waffles for anyone who goes to their booth, and many give out ARCs (for more information about ARCs, click here).
Because I came soon after the festival, there were still lots of books to unpack and signed books to buy. Their backroom was also open, and I got to see all the different posters for YALL Fest over the years (I wish I took more photos of them because they were all beautiful). There were also photos of authors at the event and I was able to see some of the things given out –– pins, shirts, journals, and badges.
When I first walked inside, I thought that it would be on the smaller size. I wasn't expecting it to go as far back as it did! The "10 feet of King Street storefront belies a much longer space (172 feet long but who’s counting)." The walls were lined with books and there were a couple of genre-specific rooms too. The backroom had the YA books, another area had cookbooks, there was a room on military history, and a kids room, complete with kids' books and things to do while waiting. In the front, Blue Bicycle Books also had a section for Charleston authors, which I loved looking at.
I spent 30 minutes in the store, just looking at all they had to offer. I ended up walking away with a Blue Bicycle Books tote and a signed copy of The Wicked King. I've been meaning to pick it up, and it is perfect that it is signed.
During the summer, they also lead a Write for Summer camp which is a creative writing camp for kids. It was founded in 2003 and is lead by the store owner Jonathan Sanchez and store manager Sara Peck.
The bookstore is located on 420 King Street in Charleston, South Carolina and you can check out their website here.