Westchester’s first independent bookstore opens doors
Fall weather has set in, opening the doors to the Holiday season and there is no better place to enjoy the spirit of the Holidays than at a local bookstore.
The Book Jewel, Westchester’s first independent bookstore, opened in late August and has quickly become a transformative space for the Westchester community. Sean Moor, manager of The Book Jewel, says about the opening, “Westchester’s unique, tight knit community immediately welcomed our small business with open arms. In turn, our bookstore has quickly been filled with the character and life of the place. Paiges, our locally rescued store kitten, has especially become a highlight of visiting The Book Jewel.”
Books are uniquely personal gifts and so are the spaces that house them. As The Book Jewel bravely opened its doors during the pandemic, they have prioritized the health and safety of their customers by providing a socially distanced and sanitized environment. “Our decision to open our store during a pandemic was one to empower and contribute to the community in a time of need. Books are a vital source of information and entertainment, and we wanted to safely give customers the opportunity to enjoy our inspiring space and take home a real, tangible book for company” says Moor.
In these unprecedented times, independent bookstores are struggling to rival the economic conditions of the pandemic, but thankfully The Book Jewel’s roots are in the community, and the business continues to thrive with the help of the local neighborhood and loyal customers. Although The Book Jewel is not yet hosting in person events or readings, they engage their community through weekly newsletters and an online book club, which recently finished Caste by Isabel Wilkerson.
As a house of culture and ideas, The Book Jewel prioritizes and promotes diversity and inclusion through its expansive politics, African American studies, LGBQT+ and feminist literature collections. Their children’s section also reflects local authors, communities of color and the diversity of the store as a whole. Moor says about their curation, “We believe all voices should be reflected in writing and literature. Our collections focus on showcasing a diversity of authors, especially in our own community.”
Karen Dial, owner of The Book Jewel, is looking forward to the upcoming seasons, “We are beyond grateful for the support our community has shown since opening our doors in late August. This bookstore in many ways is the fulfillment of a life-long dream and I wanted it to be an inclusive space for everyone. I believe that the magic of our store is that anyone who visits can find a book or gift that speaks to them personally, and the welcoming space invites them to do so.”
The Book Jewel’s interior is authentic and inviting, a reprieve from the digital world we exist in. The 3,000sq ft space is framed with dark Victorian bookshelves stretching to the vaulted wooden ceiling. It is a place where the past dwells among the books we love most, and the present offers itself up in the brilliant new authors waiting to be discovered.
The Book Jewel offers the perfect combination of past and present, new and used titles. In addition to the hardy paperbacks, The Book Jewel also offers unique stationary, literary apparel, games & puzzles, candles and other local artisan gifts.
In this season of giving, The Book Jewel is full of treasures to share. There is a wealth of joy and love to be found among the carefully curated shelves and heartfelt gifts.
The Book Jewel’s warm atmosphere makes it the perfect place for holiday shopping, but knowing that you are supporting your local community in doing so, makes it the gift that keeps on giving.