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Massachusetts' only co-op bookstore aims to stock shelves with diverse collection

In Roslindale, diversity in co-op bookstore is a community effort
In Roslindale, diversity in co-op bookstore is a community effort 01:44

BOSTON – Rozzie Bound Co-Op in Roslindale provides a unique experience for book lovers in Massachusetts.

Located on South Street, Rozzie Bound is the only co-op bookstore in the state.

"We're very proud of our collection of books. We're a small store but a pretty mighty collection," said Talia Whyte, co-owner of Rozzie Bound Co-Op.

With an emphasis on carrying books from diverse authors, Whyte and co-owner Ana Crowley wanted the store to be a reflection of the community.

"By making it community owned we really tried to bring together the people of Roslindale and have something for everyone," Crowley said.

What makes a bookstore a co-op?

Crowley and Whyte are worker-owners and there are over 235 consumer owners, people who bought a one-time share to have a say in how the bookstore is run.

"They can run for the board, elect board members, and they can tell people they own a bookstore," Whyte said.  

Not only do they make sure to carry books from diverse authors, but they also offer gifts and merchandise from locally owned businesses.

"The demographic of this country is changing and so retail and in particular bookstores need to reflect that change," said Whyte, who is board president.

Positive community response

Whyte and Crowley said the community response has been fantastic.

"We have had wonderful community response. People are so excited to have a bookstore in their neighborhood," Crowley said.

"We're getting a lot of great feedback from our customers who come in like 'Oh wow the books are so diverse.' They're not used to seeing that," Whyte added.

Rozzie Bound celebrates milestone

They say that a thriving bookstore reflects a thriving community.

April 27 is the co-op's first anniversary party and also happens to be Independent Bookstore Day.

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