At a time when so many divisive factors afflict humanity, the Book remains above all else the link of spirit to spirit, of people to people.
Brant's Books has been a beloved destination in Sarasota, Florida for over half a century. Started by Mr. Brant in 1956 in an old Army barracks (moved from the Venice airport after the war) it housed over 150,000 volumes of literary treasures. Customers from all over the world have helped us grow into one of the largest and oldest independently owned used bookstores in Florida. Thousands of people through out the years have browsed our stacks and enjoyed the quirky organized chaos of an old fashioned bookstore. Think the charm of Hogwarts with modern titles and authors mixed in the stacks. It might require a bit of digging to find treasures or an old tome from the 1900’s but isn’t that half the fun???
Thank You! to all the customers and friends who have supported the store for over 64 years. Many of you have known me since I was sweeping floors for Mr. Brant as a 9 year old child. (He paid 25 CENTS an hour because he probably realized I read more than I swept :) Mom took over the store when Mr Brant passed. She had a passion for the books, and the community that had supported the store for all those years.
She and Stuart Kaminsky (who wrote for CSI/Rockford Files) would spend hours talking books in her office, Michael Connelly (Harry Bosch series) signed his first book to her.
And she and John D MacDonald would have words when he would come in the store and tear all the last pages out of his books on the shelves. (He didn’t want other people making money off his writing, he was certainly a character)
When my Mom passed in 2002, I took over the store, and with it her passion for books. There is a certain soul to a store that has so much character, history and interesting people among the aisles .
There is also an art to connecting a reader with the right book, and there is pure joy in searching, wandering, browsing and finding it yourself. What better way to spend a rainy day?
Brant's was originally in an old Army barracks located between - Barnes & Nobles and Borders. As those bookstores evolved and eventually closed, we survived.
Then came the Red Tide and the BP oil spill. For many years tourists - many who are seasonal customers - didn’t visit our lovely beaches or bookstore, yet we survived.
Hurricane Irma damaged our building, we lost some inventory, I acquired many gray hairs, and made the front page of Imgur (https://imgur.com/gallery/s26ou), but we survived.
And finally, almighty Amazon. The bane of so many bookstores. We have learned to co-exist and grow, and learned to survive.
But that was all before COVID-19. Gotta admit, this one got me.
'I could tell you my adventures - beginning from this morning,' said Alice a little timidly: 'but it's no use going back to yesterday, because I was a different person then.'
-Alice's Adventures in Wonderland
It’s hard for me to ask for help, having never done so, before. But lack of sales for the last three months during our busiest season has really hurt. Hurt enough to ask because now my store is in serious jeopardy.
We have applied for every loan and grant possible, and yet we wait. The community is at risk of losing yet another bookstore. And because we work on trade for many of our books, we have given life and recycled previously loved books for over 50 years.
Can you imagine the amount of paper we have saved from going to the landfill? Bookstores support their communities in so many different ways.
I know not everyone can help, even if you want to support the store. So just talk about us, help us put the word out there. Share on Social Media.
Let people know, bookstores are important, they improve communities, increase knowledge and create a safe space for all. My dream is for Brant's to become a community meeting place, where people and ideas grow.
Why do we need all this money??!! Well, I need to stabilize the business, increase revenue, get caught up with past bills and move forward as quickly as possible to make up for a major loss of income. Some ways I can achieve these goals:
1. Pay past due bills
2. Get all inventory online to create an in-store POS system so Books can be shipped/viewed online to increase customer base and sales.
3. Hire TWO people to help in the store (one for online business and one for in store sales)
4. Open a small coffee shop/event area. Hire local. Have Book signings and Book Clubs, rent out space
5. Buy Max’s favorite dog treats. (Max thinks this should be #1)
These are ways for me to anchor the Bookstore for future generations to enjoy. Books can change lives. Words can change people. Bookstores can change communities.
Help us keep a treasure in our community.
$1, $5, $10, $15, $20 and $50 ....Max will let you pet him and you will have our Gratitude for your support!!
(OK, let's be honest, Max will let you pet him anyway-come by and say HI! :)
$100: For every $100 donated you will receive a $10 gift certificate-for yourself or a friend!
$250: For every $250 donated you will receive $25 gift certificate-for yourself or a friend
$500 or more $50 gift certificate for yourself or a friend
*gift certificates are for in store sales ONLY and can not be used for internet items (Signed, collectibles, etc)
We will also be listing signed books as rewards shortly! Keep checking back :)
Thank you, Thank you for all your support : )
Check out some of the amazing things we get in the store!
DonationsSee top donations
- Carol A. McKeone
- Sue Rupp
- Hannah Chitwood
- Jeanne Hoffmann
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