Aria Maher and David Griffey recently opened Griffeys’ Book Emporium in Delaware.

Courtesy photo

Griffeys’ Book Emporium is located at 4 Troy Road in the Georgetowne Shopping Center in Delaware.

Courtesy photo

Avid readers and book collectors in the community can now visit Griffeys’ Book Emporium to check out Delaware’s first used bookstore. The business opened on Labor Day and is located in the Georgetowne Shopping Center across from Grady Memorial Hospital.

Engaged couple and co-owners David Griffey and Aria Maher are avid readers and writers themselves, and through that bond, Griffey said the idea came organically to them one day to open a used bookstore in their community.

“Both of us are really into reading, and Aria has even written and published a couple of things of her own. We love books,” Griffey told The Gazette.

That no such store previously existed in the community played, perhaps, the biggest role in Griffey and Maher determining the endeavor was worth pursuing.

“One of the big motivations for us in opening the store is that we love going to Half Price Books and stuff, but we don’t love going down (U.S. Route) 23 every time we want to do so,” Griffey said. “That was one of the chief motivators and also one of the biggest reasons we thought it could be viable because we also want it here in town. We figured we’d just do it ourselves.”

Maher estimates there are anywhere from 8,000 to 10,000 books in the store’s collection, and from fiction to non-fiction, sci-fi, mystery, poetry, and more, there is something for all readers.

“You name it, we have it,” she said.

New books from local and independent authors will also be sold at Griffeys’ Book Emporium. Maher, who published both a mystery novella and a paranormal suspense novel by the time she was 16 years old, has a particular understanding of the efforts that go into publishing a book and getting the necessary exposure to help sales.

“That’s something that’s super cool as an independent author, seeing your book in a bookstore,” Maher said. “You’re never going to walk into Barnes and Noble and see your book, or at least very rarely, so I wanted to do that because I know so many people in that space who have great books. I want to help get them out there and that be a part of what we do. … I’ve seen the process of publishing a book, and every time someone buys your book, that’s a big win.”

To that end, Griffeys’ Book Emporium will host a book signing on Friday, Sept. 30, with local author Leslie Anne Alexander for her debut novel “White Lantern,” which was independently published this summer.

Partnering with local authors is one of many ways Griffey and Maher hope to endear their store to the community, and if the early returns are any indication, they are well on their way to doing just that.

“We’ve actually been quite surprised at how Delaware has really come out for us. Delaware has shown up to support us,” Griffey said, with Maher adding that 200 books were sold at the store during its opening day.

Griffey said the hope is to open up the store’s back room in the future to serve as a quiet reading space for customers, as well as to host book clubs and Dungeons and Dragons clubs. He even mentioned possible plans for a coffee bar sometime down the road.

He added that future plans also include building the store’s online offerings, such as adding an online inventory and ordering system. In conjunction with having an online inventory available for customers to browse, Maher said she hopes to be able to eventually provide curbside service in the future for customers who prefer not to come into the physical store.

First and foremost, however, the couple is focused on settling in as store owners and taking care of the primary needs of the business such as cataloging their expansive collection.

Griffeys’ Book Emporium is open from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. Tuesday-Saturday. For more information on the store, visit or check the store out on Facebook and Instagram @griffeysbookemporium.

Reach Dillon Davis at 740-413-0904. Follow him on Twitter @DillonDavis56.