New community-funded bookshop in Kew Gardens will officially open this Saturday

Kew & Willow Books
Photo via Facebook/TheQueensBookShop

Kew & Willow Books, a bookshop started by three former Barnes & Noble employees, will officially open on Oct. 7.

Vina Castillo, Natalie Noboa and Holly Nikodem settled on the location at 81-63 Lefferts Blvd. in May after raising more than $72,000 from the Queens community to open the bookstore.

The 700-square-foot Kew Gardens space will display adult fiction and non-fiction books, and the back of the store will be dedicated to children’s, young reader and young adult books with room for story time.

As a general purpose bookstore, Kew & Willow Books will stock every genre, including fiction, history, biography, self-improvement and more. Owners will also highlight local authors with a display for Queens writers that will rotate once a month.

The name, which pays homage to Kew Gardens, is also inspired by the Whomping Willow in the Harry Potter series. The author J.K. Rowling created the tree for her series after visiting the the Kew Gardens Botanical Garden in England.

For now, the shop will only be open on Saturdays from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. and Sundays from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. The owners said they will open on weekdays “further down the road.”