Anna offers a portal to another world
For many, reading becomes an occasional escape from everyday life — letting the imagination run wild. But as the owner of Anna’s Books in Rocklin, Anna Billings incorporates reading into her daily routine.
Billings said she is constantly reading — while eating breakfast, during her mid-day break, after work and before bed.
“It just takes you somewhere else,” Billings said.
She said she usually finishes about two to three books a week ranging from genres of mystery to non-fiction.
Her love of reading is one thing that attracted her to open Anna’s Books in 2007. And also may be what keeps customers coming back.
One of the things that customer Kathy Wapple said sticks out about Billings’ business is her memory. Wapple said Billings remembers what customers have read and liked and what they purchased during their last visit.
“I love it,” Wapple said. “It’s not your typical used bookstore.”
Wapple, a Rocklin resident, has been a regular customer since the shop’s opening almost two years ago.
Anna’s Books opened at the corner of Sunset and Lonetree boulevards, in a location filled with book genres of science fiction, children’s, self-help, romance, reference and many others. Billings said her inventory is primarily based off customers who bring in their unwanted books, where they are sold about half off the cover price at the local bookshop. What started as an inventory of about 12,000 books, has grown into approximately 38,000 books, Billings said.
“I’m growing very fast,” she said.
Something Billings prides her business on is customer service and “personal attention,” she said.
Customers are welcome to come into the store asking for reading recommendations on a new author, a monthly read for a book club or similar series books. The shop also offers customers an author binder list, as well as the inventory listed in a computer database for easily referenced books. The organization makes it easy for customers to come in and out, or come in and stay a while – the books are shelved by topic, alphabetically by author, then by title.
For the beginning reader, Billings will help find an author or book that goes along with the person’s outside hobbies and television interests, she said. One of her favorite aspects of the job is seeing people excited about a new book or author.
“Knowing I bring people a little bit of pleasure,” she said, like kids in a candy store.
Billings previously worked at another Rocklin bookstore and opened her shop shortly after the other closed its doors.
“I kind of felt like it was meant to be,” Billings said. “It just kind of all fell into place, I love it.”
Lauren Weber can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Ribbon cutting, teacher-appreciation event
• 4 to 7 p.m. Thursday, May 28
• First 100 teachers will receive a free tote bag filled with coupons from local businesses.
Partnership with Rocklin businesses such as Kona Coffee, The Pizza Place, El Mariachi Taqueria, local Curves, Ocean Nails and more.
Wine and cheese night
• 5 to 7 p.m. Thursday, July 9
• Celebrating the shop’s second anniversary, showcasing local authors.
• Partnership with Strikes Family Entertainment Center in Rocklin; kids who read 10 books will receive a free bowling game at Strikes.
Sunset Blvd. Ste. 155, Rocklin
Open: 10 a.m. to
6 p.m. Monday through Thursday; 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Friday; 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday
On the Web: annasbooks.biz