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Oh Hello Again is a new Capitol Hill book shop organized in a bibliotherapeutic notion

(Image: Oh Hello Again)

In the wake of another “record breaking” Cyber Monday for Seattle retailing giant Amazon, a new bookstore with a twist in how it organizes its shelves and helps its customers find new and useful things to read is preparing to open on Capitol Hill.

“You can find the topic you’re interested in. Or a book maybe you weren’t even looking for,” owner Kari Ferguson tells CHS about Oh Hello Again, her new “bibliotherapy” bookstore opening this week on 15th Ave E.

Bibliotherapy? Ferguson describes it as “the notion that novels and reading can help individuals process, work through, and deal with different issues and concerns in their lives.”

The approach means Oh Hello Again is organized by topics — “mental health, everyday problems, bettering yourself, relationships, travel, and many more” — but don’t expect shelves of self-help books. The sections contain a mix of novels, picture books, young adult books, and graphic novels that address the themes of the areas a reader might want to explore.


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Most of her sections are pretty robust but Ferguson says she found some possible categories like “divorce” a bigger challenge to fill. Take a note, aspiring Seattle novelists.

The result, Ferguson hopes, is customers stopping in the shop to find books that become “part of the decor in your life and have these emotions and feelings connected to them.”

But she knows that others will also simply be looking for something good to read.

Oh Hello Again will also carry a selection of “book related products and life enhancing gifts” like tote bags, coffee mugs, cards, wrapping paper, and candles.

Oh Hello Again moves in where vegan sweet shop Sugar Plum closed down last year.

The bookstore veteran — she previously owned Dickens, a children’s bookstore in Vancouver, Washington — is excited to join Capitol Hill’s relatively rich book shop scene including Elliott Bay Book Company and Twice Sold Tales. Oh Hello Again will also be just down the street from Ada’s Technical Books which has expanded in the city with its acquisition and transformation of the Fuel Coffee chain to bring Ada’s books into new neighborhood locations.

Ferguson hopes Oh Hello Again complements her new neighbors — especially technical and sci-fi-forward Ada’s as the two shops provide new spins on the bookstore genre. She also sees good things ahead for small, independent shops.

“This is why I think there will always be bookstores,” she said. “There’s something so important to seeing and feeling a book.”

And there’s something, Ferguson hopes, to the way we find what what to read next that a new approach like Oh Hello Again can be part of.

Oh Hello Again is located at 324 15th Ave E. You can learn more at ohhelloagain.com.


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pistil
4 months ago

Welcome, Oh Hello Again! Good to see another brick and mortar bookstore on the hill.
But don’t forget the online bookstores Pistil Books started out as a physical store (1993-2001) and has been online ever since.
https://www.pistilbooks.net/

Oh Hello Again
4 months ago
Reply to  pistil

Thank you! Indies need to stick together!

Chris Lemoine
Chris Lemoine
4 months ago

This sounds like a risky undertaking. I hope it goes well and look forward to exploring the store. I like the idea of ditching some traditional categories, or at least not letting them be as prominent as in other bookstores. That sort of “curated” experience could be a joy or a pain, depending on how well it works for people. But finding something good you maybe weren’t even looking for, that never gets old!

Capitol Hill Bookworm
Capitol Hill Bookworm
4 months ago

As a reader, this shop sounds delightful. Looking forward to visiting!

Theo
Theo
4 months ago

Will there be cats. :-)

Bob
Bob
4 months ago

Cool neighborhood update! Glad to see this is coming.