In 1981 Mr. Good opened the San Anselmo shop and by the end of the decade his wife, Sandra was repairing bindings one floor up. For Mr. Good it was a traditional form of book selling. Initially he issued catalogues and mimeographed sheets but in time found his rhythm in selling material mostly to people who visited the shop. His was not a catalogue based business.
I asked Michael for a memory of an important book he had handled. He spoke of a heavy set of books that contained original watercolors by Kate Greenaway. In time he learned that the Toronto Public Library was an active buyer of English children's material. Eventually he carried the entire set, of four volumes totaling about seventy-five pounds, with him on a flight to Toronto where a transaction was completed. Today these watercolors are part of their permanent collection.
In the 1990s Mr. Good was slow to accept the internet as a selling alternative but he did in time make the transition to online selling. Today a significant portion of his sales come from the internet and it is a factor in their decision to decamp for a lower key home based business. For many of Mr. Good's customers online, he's not moving at all.
For Sandra, the decision to join Michael in the related trade, book binding, began in the 1980s when she signed-up for a course then taught by Bob Lucas at San Francisco State. In time she developed the experience and confidence to accept customer projects. In moving into semi-retirement after two decades, she'll continue to be active for many years to come.
During December the hours are Monday to Saturday 10 to 5. For those wishing to obtain an online map here are the particulars for Map Quest.
Michael D. Good Books
35 San Anselmo Avenue
San Anselmo, California 94960
Hours: Monday through Saturday 10 to 5