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Park Slope Bookstores Cater to Pint-Size Readers

By Leslie Albrecht | November 29, 2012 7:11am

PARK SLOPE — Little literature-lovers are in luck — options for young readers are expanding in Park Slope.

The new bookstore PowerHouse on 8th, which opened recently on Eighth Avenue between 11th and 12th streets, features a roomy children's nook in the back of the store, complete with a table and stools where younger readers can sit and peruse books.

Owners Daniel Power and Susanne König, Park Slope residents and parents of children at nearby P.S. 107, told DNAinfo in August that they wanted the new store to be "a one-stop shop for intelligent people with kids."

The store is an offshoot of the PowerHouse Arena gallery and bookstore in DUMBO, and aside from a wide selection of children's titles, it also stocks young-adult literature, books for grown-ups, cards and stationery.

PowerHouse on 8th plans to host events for boths kids and adults, starting with a Dec. 4 book signing by Park Slope native Pete Hamill, who will read from his new memoir, "The Christmas Kid."

Over on Seventh Avenue, longtime neighborhood favorite The Community Bookstore has also just unveiled a beefed-up children's section. A new larger area for young readers was created by renovating a space in the back of the store that once held a small kitchen and a pet bearded dragon, co-owner Stephanie Valdez said.

The newly renovated kids corner has a small piano, a table and pint-sized leather arm chairs where young readers can settle in, surrounded by several new shelves stocked with children's titles. Valdez said she and co-owner Ezra Goldstein have received a steady stream of requests for more children's books since they took over the store in 2010.

"Introducing kids to wonderful books is an important part of what we do," Valdez said. "This has been on our wish list for a long time."

Community Bookstore will resume weekly story-time events for children in January, with sessions to be held on Sundays at 11 a.m., Valdez said.

During the week, even babies can get exposed to reading at the Park Slope public library. The branch hosts two story-time sessions, one on Wednesdays at 10:30 a.m. for toddlers (18 to 36 months), and one on Fridays, also at 10:30 a.m., for babies up to 18 months old.

The reading events are quite popular, and librarian Stephanie Brueckel recommended getting to the library early to secure a slot, because there's only space for 15 children at a time. Brueckel said she hopes to add more story-time sessions in the new year.

"The demand is definitely there," she said.