Hiram Books is set to open at 5077 Jimmy Lee Smith Parkway, Suite 109, in Hiram. The owners Jerry and Trayce Finney hope to have the store’s grand opening July 13.
According to USA Today independent book stores average about 6 percent of all book sales. The American Bookstore Association, a top trade group for independents, reported their membership declined by almost a fifth between 2001 and 2011.
Mrs. Finney said they decided to open the store because of her love for books. The Book Shelter, formerly located in downtown Hiram, closed and they wanted to make sure there was a used book store in the county, she said.
“The passion of the books is what drives this,” Mrs. Finney said.
Before making the decision to open the store they traveled to different independent book stores to see how they did business, Finney said. They noticed all the places they visited were doing well despite the down economy.
As of June 26 the new store already had more than 14,000 books ready to be shelved and sold. Some of their product came from The Book Shelter when it closed, they said.
The Finneys said they feel the location is going to be a key to success. A high-profile location near heavily traveled U.S. Hwy. 278 gives them a presence to passing motorists. Mrs. Finney said when rush hour traffic is backed up she has noticed people who saw their store driving over and writing down its name.
Finney said he believes that people seeing the store’s name, which was put on the windows June 21, has spiked their Facebook page “likes.” As of June 28 they had 374 likes.
He said his goal is to stay open for many years.
“I believe the location alone is going to generate the income for the store and income for one,” Finney said.
The store will sell gently used books from multiple genres at 50 percent off retail price. Store hours are tentatively set at Tuesday through Sunday from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. He said he wants to see what the store traffic is like before setting the hours permanently.
To get the store ready the Finneys have been working until 1 to 2 a.m. each day building handmade book selves, and sorting through their inventory.
For more information about the store visit them at hirambookstore.com, where there is a link to follow to their Facebook page and other social media, or call (770) 943-6800.