• Marion Balyszak

Talk Story Bookstore, Hanapēpē Kaua'i

Updated: May 5



Aloha All,


Covid-19 has us all tucked in right now, but like the world, we remain ever hopeful of being out and about again. Events for my two books, A Telling of Ancestors and Waking the Sleeping Giant will therefore remain on hold.


My last event was a Book Signing at Talk Story Bookstore located in Hanapēpē on the west side of Kaua'i. The event took place on January 24th, a week before we returned to the mainland, as part of the community's weekly Friday Night Art Walk. My table was set up outside the entrance where I had the pleasure of chatting up visitors coming and going from the Bookstore and signing my books.


Hanapēpē, known as ‘Kaua'i’s Biggest Little Town’, is a charming, quaint 'little town' located in the East Kona District of Kaua'i. This upbeat community, once-described as a ‘ghost town’, is anything but. It's definitely a must-see destination, especially for its weekly Friday Night Art Walk. The event draws tourists and residents alike to the festival-like setting on Main Street, where an eclectic array of shops are open, island and Hanapēpē artisans display their creative wares in tents and borrowed spaces, food trucks and other culinary venues serve up enticing food and beverages, and local musicians rock the night away. It all takes place beneath the moon and the stars - if the night is clear - with 'magical' white lights wrapped around trees and tacked up on storefronts and tents. And yes, there is dancing in the street...


Talk Story Bookstore is the only independent bookstore on Kaua'i. It's also the westernmost bookstore in the United States. It's a popular destination for book enthusiasts, young and old alike, as well as visitors and island residents who not only browse shelves of books, but are certain to gather in front of the historic storefront to record their pilgrimage in photos. The groups going in and out were upbeat and excited that night, and it just warmed the heart to watch the number of delighted children come out with their newly purchased books in-hand.


My thanks to owner, Ed Justis and his lovely wife, Yuriko, for hosting a book signing for me in January. I’m thrilled that both my books, A Telling of Ancestors and Waking the Sleeping Giant, are available at the Bookstore. Love also to ‘The Boss’, also known as Celeste, the resident cat who 'oversees' the bookstore from her comfy perch behind the counter, where she periodically awakens from her slumber long enough to let some customers fuss over her and demonstrate her skill at ringing a bell for a treat.


Talk Story, which celebrated its fifteenth anniversary in business last November, carries a large variety of new and used books, out of print books, comic books, vinyl records, vintage books, and rare and collectable books. There's something for everyone. They also have over anything from beach-reads to children’s books, mysteries to current events, and Hawaiiana. You can order via their website and they will ship.

However, during this period, when Covid-19 has kept us all home and shut down most levels of commerce, Talk Story Bookstore has been closed indefinitely as well. Like all independent bookstores which struggle to survive in the best of times, Talk Story and so many more, including Long's Cards and Books in Penn Yan, New York which also carries my books, are at risk of not surviving.


Take advantage of shopping Talk Story on-line and having orders shipped, buy some gift cards, or donate to help them out if you are able. Talk Story on Kaua'i is worth supporting as are any independent bookstores in the areas you may live. To do any or all of the suggested ways to support them, check our their website at: www.talkstorybookstore.com


Mahalo


































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