For Yvonne Hayes, nothing beats leafing through a good book or running her hands along the spines of novels on a shelf.
She thinks a bookshop is all about discovering an unexpected tale or finding a read that can’t be put down.
The Picton business owner is a book-lover through and through.
Ms Hayes recently opened the only book store in Wollondilly, The Good Reader Book Shop, at Picton Mall.
It specialises in vintage and antique books and has a wide range of new and used books.
“I have always read a lot,” Ms Hayes said.
“A large part of my life happens in books. I have never thrown away a book because they are part of my history.
“Books form a part of my reality.”
Ms Hayes said people who once abandoned bookshops for the ease and convenience of the internet are now returning to stores.
“When you buy a book it is a personal experience,” she said.
“You have to see if a book meets your needs at the time. You can leaf through it and smell it,” she said.
“There is an excitement about discovering a new book in a store that you never would have considered unless you picked it up.
“That experience only comes when shopping at a book shop rather than online.
“The internet is helpful if you want to find a specific book or author but it doesn’t expand your views or curiosity on any genre.”
Ms Hayes said her children and grandchildren grew up with a love of reading too.
“We read to our children and once they could read for themselves then wouldn’t put books down,” she said.
“It was part of our normal rhythm. We were always surrounded by books and stories.
“It helps kids with their imagination, creativity, communication skills and it extends their horizons.”
Ms Hayes said Wollondilly needed a book shop, especially because of the many creative people who lived in the shire.
“We have books from 20th century writers, mysteries and thrillers, contemporary novels, second-hand fiction and more at good prices,” she said.
“We have a small antiquarian section and a collection of unusual books that locals won’t find anywhere else.”
The book store opened in July and Ms Hayes also owns stores in Bowral and Batesman Bay.
Details: Shop T1 Picton Mall, beside Coles. The store is open seven days.