Oasis Fine Used Books opened its doors earlier this month on Main Street in Gloucester. Owner Kip Mortenson said his business specializes in hardcover books that are in good to very good shape.
Most of the books in his shop are from private individuals, libraries, estates, other book sellers and from his own collection. Mortenson had another shop where he lived in Montana and worked as a rancher.
Since his previous store was in the West, Mortenson said this store has a heavy interest in American literature, Western Americana and Native American history. He said the store also has a good selection on books dealing with the Revolutionary and Civil wars, Virginia history and the states.
Mortenson said he also has several cases in the shop that focus on specialized subjects. One, he said, for example, is full of books by famous illustrators.
A separate room in the store features nature-related books such as trail guides, planting and gardening guides. There are also books in this section dealing with women’s health and art-related themes. He said he is in the process of expanding his selection on political science, philosophy and current events.
Mortenson has held a strong interest in books since he was a child. His father had a mail-order book business for over 40 years. "I grew up with that," he said. "We had about 3,000 books in the house."