Home bookshop focus Bookshop focus—The Book Centre, Wexford

Bookshop focus—The Book Centre, Wexford

Tara Grant and Nikki Reddy 

The Book Centre, Wexford

How it started

The Book Centre Wexford opened in 1977, just down the street from where our shop is now. Sean Ryan opened The Book Centre Waterford a few years before the Wexford branch and saw an opportunity on the main street of Wexford for a book shop.

We moved to a bigger three-floor premises around 10 years later. Sean’s daughter Maeve now runs the business. There is still an employee who moved with us from the original location all those years ago!

Our Wexford shop has shifted and changed to suit our customers over the years but we have finally found a cosy, atmospheric layout that suits both our booksellers and customers.

How it’s going

We are very lucky to have wonderful regular customers who love books just as much as we do. They give us lots of recommendations too! Our booksellers work extremely hard to stock the shelves and help people find the exact title they are looking for, or even send them away with a book they would never have picked for themselves.

We love when our customers return to us and let us know their thoughts on a title we suggested!

The classical music that plays over the speakers give the customers a relaxing environment to browse our selection of fiction, biographies and cookery books and much more on our ground floor.

We also have a café on the top floor where people can sit with a hot cup of something and browse our selection of travel literature and entertainment books, and escape reality even just for the time it takes to finish their drink.

We have a great relationship with the local schools and we often have authors in to visit students and story time at the weekends.

We also sell school books, stationery, gifts and greeting cards which means we have so much to offer inside our four walls. There is something for everyone!

The O’Brien Bookseller of the Year Award

Ivan O’Brien and Amy Devereux

Amy Devereux, our children’s bookseller and children’s book buyer for the The Book Centre/Barker & Jones Group recently won The O’Brien Press Bookseller of the Year Award and we couldn’t be happier that she has been recognised for her never ending knowledge of children’s books.

Where you’re headed

Very simply—we just want to keep putting books into the hands of the people of County Wexford and beyond!

We aim to have lots more events this year including author signings, book launches, the works. We get involved with the Wexford Opera Festival that takes place every year, and hold pop-up events.

It is a great way to bring people into the shop that may not be regular customers, to showcase the amazing books and products we sell.

A book recommendation

Nikki recommends Ruth and Pen by Emilie Pine which is a rich character study of two women set in Dublin 2019.

For lovers of non-fiction, Listen to the Land Speak by Manchán Magan is a gorgeous journey through Ireland’s ancient lands and the stories rooted in them.

For children, Fox and Son Tailers by Paddy Donnelly is Amy’s favorite picture book of last year, perfect for ages four to seven.

For teenagers aged 14+, Things I Know by Helena Close is a brilliant book that showcases how mental illness can affect somebody’s life, but with moments of humour sprinkled throughout which act as a foil to the serious subject matter.

The Book Centre is our featured bookseller this month for the bestseller charts