Meet a Bookseller: Richard DeVoe

Happy Meet a Bookseller Monday! We’re proud to introduce Richard DeVoe, owner and bookseller at Fair Trade Books in Red Wing, Minnesota.

How did you get into bookselling?

A bit of a long story. While working as a tradesman as a union pipe insulator for oil refineries and large construction projects, I would always visit the indie bookstores near the job site on my few hours off. I ended up working for books for a bookseller who needed help moving locations, and he recommended a nearby town as the ideal place to open a store, as the bookstore had recently closed. I was able to purchase the books and fixtures of the closed bookstore and found a beautiful historic building to open six months later in. It is our tradition to gift every first time visitor a book, and to date we have gifted 34,000 books as gifts, based on the reading interests of our customer. It is a lot of fun to engage with a customer to discover their interests.

What do you love most about being a bookseller?

The joy and delight of hearing that a customer was enriched and fulfilled by the experience of visiting us.

What do you love most about your bookstore?

We have 1,000 new and 12,000 used books. We carry all genres. The many windows, tin ceilings, and worn hardwood floors make our store welcoming.

What audiobooks would you recommend or are among your favorites?

Daisy Jones & The Six, Circe, anything read by Ian McKellen and Alan Cumming.

Where / when do you listen to audiobooks?

At the Y

What is your favorite thing about audiobooks through

Ease of use.

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

Canoe, hike, garden, and walk our bookdog Reveler.

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