A few years ago we faced store closing signs in the windows of many of our favorite book stores. I was really sad to see the East Lansing Barnes and Noble close it’s doors. As a student I used to spend a lot of time there. Walking down those aisles was one of my favorite ways of discovering new books.
I had given up on those book discovery experiences until last week; me and two of my closest friends went thrift shopping at World Mission on South Cedar. We were perusing antique furniture as I wandered into the store’s book section. It was hard to believe I was in a Lansing thrift store; nearly 25% of the building was dedicated to perfectly organizes shelves of books. These weren’t all tween fiction or romance novels either. There were incredibly diverse sections ranging from WWII history to architecture and photography books. There was a big children’s book section and great harder to find fiction books. I was impressed at the quality of these books and it was hard to believe these were all donations.
Cynthia, the manager at World Mission was hired in two years ago and her dedication to the book section is obvious. As we start to loose out on the book-store experience in Lansing, and as many of us declare our love for e-readers, I am humbled to see that Cynthia has kept this book section alive. When Cynthia was hired in, she inherited 20 gaylord boxes (yes, a new word for me too) of donated books. Most of the shelving units where already there but the books were in total disarray. With the help of a dedicated staff (Joe, Rick, and Anna) and hundreds of hours of work, she has created this mini book haven right here in Lansing. Cynthia points out that Joe, Rick, and Anna “have been the backbone of our bookstore” and without their dedication the store wouldn’t be where it is.
It is obvious how much heart has been put into organizing these books. If you have kids (or if you are a kid at heart), I urge you to check out the children’s section. If you are a history buff, I guarantee, you will spend several hours in the history section. If you like fiction, it is very likely that your fill find your favorite titles for a fraction of the cost. Cynthia and her team have also set up really cool end of isle book displays with interesting books they find. I urge you to get lost in these isles. I am probably starting to sound like a late night infomercial, but I can’t express in words how nice this mini book store is. Check it out.
Cynthia wanted me to add that the World Mission always welcomes book donations and they always need new shelves in their book department. They also have a truck and are able to pick up books. Additionally, there are donation bins around the community for clothing and books.