the book shelf linda smith

The Book Shelf, a used bookstore in Northgate Mall, was informed March 2 that they would have to vacate the premises they have occupied for five years in a mere 10 days.

“This is due to planned construction in the Mall in order to bring more shopping choices to our local citizens. That is a good thing,” said store curator Dot Watson.  “The part of it that is not good is that we only have 10 days to find another location, prepare it, and get thousands of wonderful books moved. So please, if you know of potential sites for a bookstore, please let us know.  We are going to be very busy packing up our books in preparation for the move.  So please stay tuned because we may need your help in other ways.”

The Book Shelf is the only used bookstore in a five-county area, and their purpose and goal for the funds they raise is to support and promote adult basic education in Coffee County for the 5000 + individuals who need to obtain their high school equivalency diplomas as a step to obtaining jobs and being able to further their education. 

In Coffee County, Adult Education comes under the Department of Labor and Workforce Development, not the Department of Education. The Coffee County program is in a 13-county region and has, for several years, had the highest number of graduates in the 13-county region. Another accomplishment has been to start the Adult Ed program in the Coffee County jail, and that effort has produced over 100 graduates. With that milestone, the offenders will have a credential to help them find employment when they are released.

It is also a stepping block to enable them to pursue higher education as well as technical training.

“So please help us to find a new home,” Watson asked. “During the pandemic, people have been reading more. With the cutbacks on travel of all kinds, people have been traveling vicariously by reading books! They have been trying new recipes from our great selection of cookbooks, some have even been looking for diets, exercises, and home improvement projects while sheltered in place. If you have not been to The Book Shelf, you have missed a great shopping experience of every genre imaginable. Please come visit us and please help us find a new home!”

The Book Shelf is a project of the Literacy Council, a 501(c) (3) organization which has been in existence for 32 years and serves all of Coffee County. To contact them, call 931-273-8001 or