From the outside, Browsers’ Bookstore at 1425 S.E. Pacific Blvd. looks about the same. But step inside and you will be astonished at how the place has changed.
If you were in there in the last few years, you remember what it was like: Books everywhere, on the shelves of course but also in stacks on the floor and every other flat surface.
This was what it looked like when I paid a visit on Wednesday afternoon:
Abrin Richmond bought the business from Scott Givens earlier this year. The place was shut down for a while to cull and reorganize the merchandise and refresh the inside of the space.
About two weeks ago, Richmond opened back up.
It’s a used-book store with thousands of titles available, but there’s a also shelf of new books in front, and Richmond says he hopes to expand that part of the operation.
Givens continues to own the building. When I was there, the Albany Youth Orchestra was practicing in a back room.
The Corvallis store of Browsers’ has been closed, and for now Richmond runs the Albany store as a one-man show. Store hours are 10-6 Tuesday through Saturday.
Richmond is a graduate of West Albany High School and Oregon State University and worked for Givens for six years before taking over the business.
His experience shows. I asked if he had a copy of Orwell’s “1984,” and within seconds he came up with what appears to be a pristine, never-read copy of it. A bargain at five bucks. (hh)