STORYBOOK COVE’S HISTORY IN A FEW CHAPTERS . . .
Chapter 1. ABOUT US: Our History, What We Offer; What We Do
The independent bookstore, STORYBOOK COVE, was established by Janet Bibeau, the sole owner and store manager (a former daycare/preschool teacher and certified elementary school librarian). Janet is a lifetime booklover who has always been committed to matching each reader with the perfect book.
At the beginning of STORYBOOK COVE’s independent bookstore journey, our main focus was providing quality children’s books and drop off child care and playgroups in the strip mall across from the former Hanover Mall. We also established a bookfair program supplying books for fundraiser sales at local schools that has been revised over time. Within two years STORYBOOK COVE moved to Merchants Row. Although we discontinued the drop off child care and playgroups, over the years we stocked more products including book-related toys and games, “American Girl” doll clothes and furniture, and NY Times bestsellers. Our children-focused services included story times, continuing to supply book fairs at Hanover, Norwell and other surrounding schools, midnight Harry Potter book release events, and birthday parties. Through our Treasures in the Cove Reporter program, begun 20+ years ago, children ages 8-18 get to read and review advanced reading copies of not yet published books.
In 2015 STORYBOOK COVE moved to the Hanover Mall and, while discontinuing birthday parties and phasing out the doll clothes and furniture, we expanded our book groups and clubs for children and adults, and greatly increased the number of books offered to include “grown-up” books.
In November, 2019, STORYBOOK COVE moved to its current location at 775 Washington Street, Suite 2, Hanover, MA not long before the pandemic required the shutdown of in-store retail operations. STORYBOOK COVE continued to offer books for all ages through our website www.storybookcove.com and made contactless in-person deliveries to customers in Hanover, Norwell and communities within 10 miles of the store.
In 2020, STORYBOOK COVE began the Books from the Cove Subscription Box program. The monthly Subscription Box is individually customized with exciting unique titles and a gift for the recipient (from infants through adults) based on answers to a simple questionnaire. Subscription Boxes are shipped (or picked up) once a month for the number of months purchased (1, 3 or 6).
Through our “Treasures from the Cove POP-UP” venture we are bringing our shelves of books for grandkids and for their parents and grandparents to Seniors at senior independent living communities and senior centers.
At STORYBOOK COVE, we offer knowledgeable service; books for all ages including classics, backlist favorites, the latest releases, fiction and nonfiction; puzzles and games; and greeting cards. We strive to fulfill all special orders in-store and online.
Chapter 2. WHO WE ARE
STORYBOOK COVE staff’s combined experience in bookselling is in excess of 70 years! They post weekly recommendations on the store website and on social media which are followed by many readers. In addition to assisting customers, Kendra assists in the curation of the store’s unique inventory and Joey maintains STORYBOOK COVE’s social media presence. Janet is an active hands-on owner manager who has enthusiastically committed 50+ hours a week to the business for 32+ years. As a member of New England Independent Booksellers Association (NEIBA) and the American Booksellers Association (ABA) over the years, Janet has proactively taken advantage of both associations’ educational offerings and conferences so as to develop business strategies and programs to strengthen STORYBOOK COVE to better serve our customers and to contribute to the local community. Joanne maintains the store’s website, works with Janet at many of the offsite events and has administered the Treasures from the Cove POP-UP venture.
Chapter 3. In Our Community
STORYBOOK COVE has spearheaded community events including several years of the “Where’s Waldo” hunt in 25 stores located on Route 53 and various book themed events in cooperation with the Hanover Mall community. STORYBOOK COVE often participated in the Fire Safety Day at the Hanover Fire Station and provided the books for the Meet the Authors Presented by Hanover Council on Aging & the John Curtis Free Library for the 2018 and 2019 program. In the past few years STORYBOOK COVE has conducted in person and online school-specific curated bookfairs for South Shore Charter Public School in Norwell, Meeting House Montessori School in Braintree, the JCC Early Learning Center at Congregation Sha'aray Shalom in Norwell, Furnace Brook Middle School in Marshfield, and Cole School in Norwell. We have worked with the Weymouth and Hanson Public Libraries to provide books for online and in-person author events, and have hosted local author events in the store.
STORYBOOK COVE was honored to be able to provide the online Teacher Wish List program in 2020 during the pandemic for the Center Sylvester and Cedar Schools in Hanover whereby parents could purchase and then gift books to the teachers for use in their classrooms. For many years, we have stocked the books on the summer reading lists of the local public and private schools and have had them displayed in the store organized by school for the convenience of students and their parents. Since opening in 1990, STORYBOOK COVE has assisted nearly four generations of elementary school children to find the books they will need, enjoy, and/or remember for years to come.
Chapter 4. The Future is INDIE
While what books we sell and how we deliver those books to people in our community has changed over the years, the underlying goal has not changed, which is to match each reader with the perfect book for them.
STORYBOOK COVE remains constant in providing knowledgeable service and books for all ages. Our goal in promoting and living “THE FUTURE IS INDIE” is to creatively grow and expand how we deliver books to our customers to continually strengthen the viability of STORYBOOK COVE as an independent bookstore serving the South Shore community. Our underlying goal is that a vibrant, successful STORYBOOK COVE will continue to be a participating member of the community even with any transition to new ownership and/or partnerships so as to guarantee its contribution to the community for many years to come.
STORYBOOK COVE’s story is one of generations. Parents purchased books for their children. These children have grown up, and they along with their parents continue to read books. These children eventually became parents themselves, thereby making their parents grandparents. Now they all look to STORYBOOK COVE for books for the grandkids and the adults in those young ones’ lives. This cycle and circle are why we are so excited about the future in our book-loving community.
Yes, STORYBOOK COVE is a for-profit business and as such its financial goal is to support the owner and employees. However, as an INDIE BOOKSTORE and a 32+ year member of the Hanover/Norwell and surrounding area community, there can be no greater goal than being an independent, welcoming business known, at our Hanover location or where ever we may Pop-Up, to be committed to putting the best-matched book in someone’s hand for themselves or someone they care about – a reader of any age.