Mike Desanto,, Indie Bookstore Entrepreneur

At the Chester, VT First Thursday speaker event in September, Mike DeSanto spoke to an overflow group of Rotarians and guests about Indie Bookselling in the age of Amazon. Mike, along with his wife, Renee, now own four independent bookstores in VT including the recently purchased Misty Valley Bookstore in Chester. Before becoming a bookstore owner, Mike was an actor, military policeman, lobbyist, and college professor. Mike shared  advice to those interested in opening a bookstore; be free of mortgage debt, no college age children and your retirement funds should be set aside. As to the Amazon phenomena, Mike holds the belief that as we click to make a purchase on Amazon, we are taking a short-sighted viewpoint. The money that goes to Amazon is money that is leaving our community and the local economy. In a lively Q and A, Mike demonstrated his responsiveness to customers’ concerns. Mike will be putting in two nice chairs, will improve the children’s section and acquire a rocking chair for outside the store. At the conclusion of the evening, two twenty-five dollar gift certificates, donated by Mike, were raffled off to two lucky attendees.