Owner Ally Kirkpatrick is an Alexandria native who loves reading, writing, and music. Opening Old Town Books in November 2018 was her way of making space - in Old Town and in her daily life - for these passions. Her other true loves are her daughter and husband, shop dog Scout, and birding.
Bookseller picks: Ally will be the first to recommend an experiemental memoir, approachable but well researched science writing, or a lyrical and inventive contemporary novel. She also is very fond of books about books!
Abby is a Virginia native who has probably been waiting her whole life to say that she works at a bookstore. She loves reading (obviously) and writing, as well as going to the gym and listening to too many podcasts.
Bookseller picks: Abby enjoys feminist literary fiction, female-led thrillers, and young-adult fantasy. She enjoys anything true-crime and will gladly dip her toe in the nonfiction realm if there's murder involved. Basically, give her a great cast of characters on some kind of epic adventure and she'll be your friend.
Angie is from Chicago and holds her Midwestern roots close to her heart. In her spare time, she enjoys reading (duh), baking, doing yoga, listening to true crime podcasts, and binge watching cooking competition shows with her husband and talkative black cat. You can find her on #bookstagram at @angiesreading to see her latest book reviews.
Bookseller picks: Angie reads a little bit of everything, but especially enjoys reading personal essays, short story collections, literary fiction, and a steamy romance every now and then. She's on a mission to decolonize her bookshelf with every new read she picks up.
Jen is originally from Texas, so don’t try to foist inferior BBQ from anywhere else on her. She got a degree in Art History but doesn't use it much these days, aside from visiting museums. Her hobbies in addition to reading include baking (and eating) and watching cartoons and k-dramas.
Bookseller picks: Jen reads eclectically, but has particular soft spots for science fiction and fantasy, mysteries, comics/graphic novels, romance, picture books, food writing and cookbooks. She has also read all of Agatha Christie's novels and short stories, so if you just got into Christie and want advice on what to read next, she's there for you, and she's always happy to assist on non-Christie recommendations as well.
Amanda originally hails from Maine, but has made a second home here in Alexandria. She has been an avid reader all her life, and found the #bookstagram community during graduate school. You can follow her (and her fluffy cat Rajah!) at @neverthelessshereads. When she's not reading or at the bookstore, Amanda can be found listening to true crime podcasts, binge watching scary movies with her roommate, or working on ocean advocacy projects with a local nonprofit.
Bookseller picks: Amanda enjoys horror novels (she grew up in Maine, it's basically against the law to not love Stephen King books!), thrillers, true crime, historical fiction, memoirs, and literary fiction.
Originally an Army brat growing up, Shannon has called Northern Virginia home since she graduated in 2016 with a degree in Musical Theatre (*jazz hands*). In addition to reading (and restraining herself from buying even more books), she enjoys cross-stitching, listening to podcasts, and binging The West Wing.
Bookseller picks: Shannon enjoys reading YA, romance, and modern thrillers, with the occasional foray into biography, sociology, or historical topics (come talk to her about Mt. Everest!), as well as revisiting favorite childhood reads.
Laura is a native New Mexican, but got her Bachelors in Biology from Colorado State University, Masters in Public Health from University of Michigan, and Law degree from University of Wisconsin. She doesn't really use any of those degrees anymore, as she became a yoga teacher and eventual yoga studio owner. She now runs a fully online virtual yoga / Pilates / barre and more studio - find her on instagram at @laurarosemoves and @laurasmovementlab.
Bookseller Pics: Laura enjoys reading a variety of books - from literary fiction to modern romance to YA to sci fi to thriller. She wants to pick up more non-fiction once her TBR pile gets a little smaller (but that's not likely to happen anytime soon!)
Kim is a Michigander (Go Blue!) who has recently moved to the DC area. When she's not reading, she's baking, running, listening to 90's punk rock, or trying to convince her dog to stop eating her pens. You can follow all her reviews on #bookstagram at @runoutofpages!
Bookseller picks: Kim loves any fantasy or sci-fi book (the good, the bad, the ridiculous) and bonus points if it's written by a woman. She also loves well crafted mysteries, great nonfiction book about science, and juicy memoirs.
Scout- Staff Picks
Scout, or the resident bookstore bait, loves greeting customers, sleeping, and eat fried calamari at Virtue.
Bookseller picks: Anything about dogs.