Choosing which of my jobs is my favorite is difficult. Helping customers find the perfect paper or pen that inspires them to handwrite something special is more rewarding than I could have ever guessed when I was a kid and first started working with my grandfather, Chester, at his shop, The Rescued Word. I’m almost thirty now and I haven’t left yet. In fact, it hasn’t even occurred to me to leave. I can’t imagine doing anything else.
Chester built a replica of a Gutenburg press that we use to help restore books back to their original glory, and even the tedious moments spent setting up the type are satisfying. And when I recreate a page from a book – well, I can’t quite describe the feeling. It’s like I’m one step deeper inside than reading – not only am I there in the story, I’m there with the author when they wrote the story.
And there’s the original reason Chester opened the shop: repairing typewriters. It’s a pretty awesome feeling to bring an old typewriter back to life. And there are so many different kinds of old typewriters; different shapes, sizes, and colors keep us on our toes. We do get our fair share of Underwood No. 5s, the workhorse of the early-to-mid-twentieth century. They aren’t flashy in the least, with their clunky, square housing made to protect their long keybars underneath. These old beasts worked well back in the day, but even something so hardy and strong is bound to lose a little footing over time. This is good news for those of us in the business of rescuing words.
So, it’s pretty difficult to choose. I guess I’m just lucky to have the chance to do a bunch of different things that I love.
If you’re ever near Star City, Utah – maybe for a ski trip, or a vacation through our magnificent state, stop by The Rescued Word on Bygone Alley. We look forward to meeting you.
To Helvetica and Back is the first book in the NEW “Dangerous Type” mystery series, published by Berkley Prime Crime, January 2016.
About To Helvetica and Back
The New York Times bestselling author of the Farmers’ Market Mysteries and the Country Cooking School Mysteries introduces readers to Star City, Utah, and a little shop called the Rescued Word.
Star City is known for its slopes and its powder. But nestled in the valley of this ski resort town is a side street full of shops that specialize in the simple charms of earlier eras. One of those shops is the Rescued Word, where Chester Henry and his adult granddaughter Clare lovingly repair old typewriters and restore old books. Who ever thought their quaint store would hold the key to some modern-day trouble?
When a stranger to town demands they turn over an antique Underwood typewriter they’re repairing for a customer, Clare fears she may need to be rescued. A call to the police scares the man off, but later Clare finds his dead body in the back alley. What about a dusty old typewriter could possibly be worth killing for?
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About the author
PAIGE SHELTON had a nomadic childhood as her father’s job as a football coach took the family to seven different towns before she was even twelve years old. After college at Drake University in Des Moines, Iowa, she moved to Salt Lake City where she thought she’d only stay a couple years, but she fell in love with the mountains and a great guy who became her husband. After many decades in Utah, she and her family recently moved to Arizona. You can connect with Paige at www.paigeshelton.com.