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All She Wrote Books is more than just a feminist/queer independent bookstore. When we think of the words “intersectional”, “feminist”, “queer” that are in our mission statement — we think of them as guiding lights for those who are not only actively seeking queer/feminist spaces out like ours, but for those who want more spaces like ours in the world.
Our bookstore is a place where people can find themselves in the pages of the books we have curated on our shelves. It is a place where having conversations about meaningful topics with people is just as important as getting them their next read or helping them build on their TBR pile. It is a safe, inclusive space where you’re loved, cared for, and respected no matter what walk of life you come from. Bottom line: accessibility and community are at the core of what we do, day in and day out.
Aside from our mission, All She Wrote Books works to ensure our community isn’t just represented by the books that we stock, we also build connection in the community. For example, the “Gay it Forward” program allows shoppers to sponsor a free book for someone else through the purchase of a store gift card. If anyone comes into the store and can’t afford a purchase, the gift cards ensure they walk out with something.
All She Wrote Books also donates curated book bundles and gift cards to The Network/La Red and RESPOND Inc., two organizations that work to end domestic abuse. Additionally, All She Wrote Books sponsors a free library at Connexion United Methodist Church in East Somerville. Our free library has distributed more than 300 books in the last year.
Programming is important to All She Wrote Books as it provides new avenues for us to interact with our community in more interactive ways. We collaborate with the Somerville Public Library on events like open mic nights. At the bookstore itself, we hold author talks and monthly drag story hours for families.
All She Wrote Books’ owner Christina Pascucci-Ciampa started All She Wrote Books back in 2019 by partnering with local businesses in Somerville such as the Canopy Room at Bow Market and Winter Hill Brewing Company, asking them if she could bring her 3-shelf, beige Ikea cart of new and used books written by these authors and set herself up in a small section of their stores. In July of 2020, All She Wrote Books opened its 1st brick-and-mortar location at Assembly Row in Somerville, and had been there for over 3 years.
As a survivor of domestic abuse, Christina went digging for stories that she could relate to, and found that they were out there—but they tended to get less shelf space and be shortchanged by publishers and book reviewers. Being an avid reader, she often felt unrepresented by bookshelves and online recommendations showcasing what was already popular.