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A Fox’s Tale – Rare Memories and a Secret Path back to your Youth

Imagine that you set out to write a story about an adorable independent bookstore in a quaint shop in downtown Aiken, S.C., and when you got there, you found several businesses, scores of seemingly unrelated merchandise, a glorious selection of many of the best books ever printed and then found there is another business off-premises where the owners deal in another world of publications.

Holly Segar, Co-owner of A Fox’s Tale in downtown Aiken

Co-owner Holly Segar, with husband Jeffrey Rovenpor, is a native of Aiken and after learning the rare book and retail sides of the business at prominent shops and companies in London, New York and other Northeastern mainstays of the profession, she brought her books back home.

“Our shop is A Fox’s Tale at 145 Laurens Street in Downtown Aiken,” she began to explain, of their prime location – for landmarks – next to Three Monkeys and across the street from The Brew Pub. Just walking up to and through the front door is like entering Alice’s Wonderland into the shop filled with “our mix of antiquarian books, vintage delights, handcrafted “uniques,” ephemera, décor, primitives and whimsies. Items come from all over the country and are hand selected,” during their frequent trips to major book fairs in New York, California, Florida and around the country.

“We love to feature artisan creations. The shop is always changing as new artists come our way,” said Holly.

In their compartmentalized business system, the “whimsies” and other gift items are one phase of the shop, and the books make up the Caroliniana Rare Books store, a member of the American Booksellers Association of America, the national trade association for which Holley ran for national office this past week. She is already a board member.

Jeffrey Rovenpor, Co-owner of A Fox’s Tale

As opposed to their continent-wide rare books business that they primarily do from home, A Fox’s Tale is geared to the people of Aiken with many gift-quality books, vintage books, rare books, First Editions, many from collectable series.

Mothers will find the books they read as girls and can and grab a copy of their favorite or a whole series, Nancy Drew, Jane Eyre, the Brontes. Men will be stirred by the adventures they first discovered between book covers in the tales of their youth. Like everything else in the store, so many of these nostalgic books make prized Christmas gifts.

Jeffrey has also put together complimentary history sections on Aiken, the Augusta area, South Carolina and a varied and highly acclaimed section of Civil War chronicles. Most of the histories are American but there are many other categories outside of histories, such as African-American, children, cooking and two dozen more.

We didn’t discover what the Fox’s Tale is, but there is plenty more to discover there if we decide to go back to find out.

A Fox’s Tale
145 Laurens St. SW, Aiken, SC 29801
Thursday through Saturday, 11 a.m., through 4 with other hours by appointment.
Holly or Jeffrey (914) 434-1435, and

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