Ambassador Features - Fall 2023A Q&A with Megan Bormet!
Meet Megan Bormet, founder of People’s Book and GDCDB Ambassador!
What made you want to open a bookstore?
A few years ago, my parents were visiting to help my husband, Matt, and I settle into our new Takoma Park home. As a whole family, we hoped to take a stroll with our two young kiddos to a local bookstore. Matt needed some light comic book reading, my father wanted to pick up a book on local birds (he’s a nature buff!), we desperately needed some new picture books for the kids’ rooms, and I was dying to read Celeste Ng’s bestseller, Little Fires Everywhere, before diving into the new Hulu show (Books made into TV shows are definitely one of my guilty pleasures). We were astonished to discover that there was no such store walking distance from us! So why not us? My background is in elementary education (I was a teacher and reading coach for 15 years), so the kids’ section in particular feels like another baby in the family!
Why did you want to become an Ambassador?
I have a two and four year old currently and the memory of having an infant is all too near. Even with a supportive husband, a caring extended family nearby, and the economic means to not worry about where I would buy diapers, I still had a tremendously hard time both emotionally and physically. I couldn’t begin to imagine what that experience would be like without the kind of support I had, or with the taxing weight of worrying about how to provide basic needs for my baby. I am appalled that our government does not provide such basic things like diapers and feminine products for our citizens and finding the DC Diaper Bank gave me an opportunity to give back in the smallest way possible. When I started this venture to open a local bookstore, I didn’t think twice about making sure our parent friendly environment included a diaper drop off bin! We have storytime every Sunday morning at 9:30am and are experimenting with a biweekly baby storytime every other Friday morning as well. I think that by making the diaper drop-off bin visible and integrated into a family’s routine will make a big difference.
What books do you recommend right now?
As an adult reader, I just finished Peng Shepard’s The Cartographers and as a rare-mystery-reader, I was riveted! With a twinge of magical realism, and the plot-driven energy of the final book in the Harry Potter series, I couldn’t put it down. If you’re hooked on the TV show “Only Murders in the Building”, then you’ll love this cozy and intriguing tale that answers the question: what really is the purpose of mapmaking?
For middle school readers, I am currently reading The Little Match Girl Strikes Back and am so in love with the twist on the classic Hans Christian Andersan tale. Many readers remember the devastating ending of this story, or the helpless heroine, but this retelling envisions the main character with the power to change her future through collective action. I’m learning a ton about the toxic conditions many female workers endured at original matchbook factories and feel empowered by this strong female lead!
My new favorite picture book for the little ones is Vlad, The Fabulous Vampire. The illustrations are so beautiful (reminiscent of the illustrator’s Mexican heritage) and it’s a perfect spooky read for the season, with a message that is as heart-warming as it is universal — being yourself and finding your community.
Find out more about People’s Book at https://peoplesbooktakoma.com/.