Updated: Sep 26, 2022
By Deb Akerstrom
Opened in 1978 by Doug McDonald, just prior to Redmond being named the fastest-growing city in the state, McDonald’s Book Exchange (7969 Gilman St, Redmond, WA 98052) became a mainstay for readers of all ages. When you bring in your books to exchange, you can walk out with almost any genre you enjoy—and at a good discount. It also is the oldest independently owned used bookstore on the Eastside.
Longtime Society member Anne St. Germain bought McDonalds in 1998. She had raised her family, she loved books, and she wanted a creative opportunity for herself. But now the store needs to relocate and Anne wants to retire.
She has always loved everything about this store: the customers who bring their books in to trade for new reading, the books themselves, the many authors she has met, and the organizations the store has contributed to for many years.
The potential for high profit is definitely there, she says, but her goal has not been centered around making money as much as it has been loving what she does, giving back to the community, and enjoying working with the great group of part-time employees.
The main success of McDonald’s is providing books of all sizes, ages, and descriptions for prices people can afford. Basically, buy a book, read it, and return it for a credit towards your next purchase.
It’s special just to be there, says Anne. “I work here because it’s what I really love to do,” she says. Local charities benefit also, including Hopelink. As well, the store collects toiletries for homeless shelters.
Redmond’s new, more worldly population also helps make things interesting at the store. As she says, “Now we have all kinds of books for all kinds of people. And our new customers share their stories with us, which we love!”
In addition to its retail store, McDonald’s sells its vast selection of books over on the internet.
“Owning this store is very satisfying,” says Anne, “We rarely have problems with customers, and the same things never happen every day…. Variety is the spice of life here!”
The future is very bright for this business, Anne believes, and new ownership has a great opportunity to build and grow McDonald’s Book Exchange quite a bit.
To learn more about the store or view the links below, and to inquire about potentially purchasing it, please call Anne at the store, 425-885-4773.
"Not that McDonald’s — Redmond book exchange celebrates 30 years"
"McDonald’s Book Exchange will soon be turning a new page with move"
"McDonald's Book Exchange Gets 'New' Historic Digs, Makes Way for Urban Apartments"
"McDonald’s Book Exchange supports Redmond Fire Department Benevolent Fund" https://www.redmond-reporter.com/business/mcdonalds-book-exchange-supports-redmond-fire-department-benevolent-fund/
"REDMOND BOOK SIGNING AND READING AND RACING OFF TO INDY"
"Anne St. Germain, Owner of McDonald’s Book Exchange"