Meet a Bookseller: Jill Blanchette

Happy Meet a Bookseller Monday! Today we’re proud to introduce Jill Blanchette, bookseller at Bank Square Books in Mystic, Connecticut.

How did you get into bookselling?

Actually I retired as a journalist then had a medical issue that involved more than a year of treatment, which was successful—yay! When I was feeling better, I saw a help wanted ad for my favorite local bookstore. It seemed to be just what I needed to re-emerge from the isolation of illness so I applied. I had no idea I would love it so much. So for however long that lasts, I am a bookseller.

What do you love most about being a bookseller?

I love people who love books. I love helping them and talking to them and hanging out with them in the store. I love seeing people I know there as well. I also love how physical it is— standing, walking, carrying, shelving—and I love that this jobs helps me regain my strength while being useful.

What do you love most about your bookstore?

I love the energy, the buzz of this bookstore. It’s often filled with people, local and from away, old and young, all with books in common. The store is filled with light and comfy places to sit. It’s in a charming downtown on the New England coast. And we welcome dogs. There’s an amazing bakery next door and a great record store a couple of doors down. What’s not to love?

What are you listening to right now?

The Nickel Boys by Colson Whitehead

The Nickel Boys

By Colson Whitehead • Narrated by JD Jackson & Colson Whitehead

What audiobooks would you recommend or are among your favorites?

I love it when actors read audiobooks—Burt Reynolds reading Robert B. Parker, Joanne Woodward reading Edith Wharton – so good.

Burt Reynolds reads Robert B. Parker

By Robert B. Parker • Narrated by Burt Reynolds

Where / when do you listen to audiobooks?

In the car, at home while cooking or cleaning

What is your favorite thing about audiobooks through

That it helps my bookstore and not that other behemoth!

What do you do when you’re not selling books?

I’m usually reading them or listening to them or using them to make good food.

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