The adage “One man’s trash is another man’s treasure” is at work in a local bookstore that not only has a large inventory of used books, but also used décor.
The Book Nook, located at 6944 N. University St., has been serving the Peoria-area’s literary needs for about 12 years, but Cheryl Langley assumed ownership last March.
“My brother was the owner previously, and he needed to retire due to health reasons,” Langley said. “I was a social worker at the time and needed a change as well, so it just worked out for both of us.”
Langley said she has an inventory of about 120,000 used books, most of which customers bring to the store.
“The majority of the books come in on trade; people get up to half of what we expect to sell the book for in trade credit, and then credit always pays up to half of every book purchase,” Langley said. “Occasionally, we buy books for cash, but it’s very seldom.”
Other than used books, Book Nook features work from local authors and hosts book signings with the writers twice a year. But the events aren’t inside the shop, as it is filled wall-to-wall with inventory.
“Space is an issue,” Langsley said. “So [the event] has to be something that is held outside.”
The walls of the shop are also busy, displaying literary-related quotes and statistics.
“We recently revamped all of the signs because I hated [my brother’s] signs,” Langsley said. “They were just handwritten, so we just redid them and laminated them to make them more appealing.”
The other decorations in the shop are mostly hand-me-downs.
“The majority of the [art] comes from when other bookstores are going out of business,” Langsley said.
According to Langsley, Book Nook sees a good mix of new customers and returning shoppers.
“We have a lot of regulars that come into the store, and then there’s a lot of new people who are like, ‘I’ve lived here my whole life and I didn’t know you were here,'” she said.
Book Nook is open 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday through Saturday.