Historic Shockoe Slip
1312 E. Cary St.
Richmond, VA 23219
My first visit in the South is with this great little shop in Richmond, Virginia. Fountain Bookstore is in Shockoe Slip, Richmond’s historic, commercial, and governmental center on Cary Street. The location is picturesque with tree-lined, cobblestoned streets, and it’s a gorgeous store. Not very big, but elegant in an old-world way. The owner is the striking Kelly Justice, who has been in the book business since 1989, and who bought the store in 2008.
There are a lot of regulars at Fountain and they host two to three events every week. Their strongest selling categories are fiction, children’s, and regional titles. Not bad for a bookstore that opened in 1978 and started out as a professional technical bookstore.
Kelly’s big passion besides her store’s selection is her staff. When I ask her what makes the store special, she says, “it’s the staff,” without blinking. “We’re just fun. We make everybody feel comfortable.’
Fountain works a lot with the surrounding community as well. They set up lectures and work with other businesses to host them.
It’s a very nice store with a pleasant atmosphere and definitely worth a visit if you’re in the Richmond area.