About Us

Our Mission

To share our passion and knowledge of books and build community through great reads, good company, and engaging conversations for all ages.  

 

Our History

Our history dates back to 1875 when our great-great grandfather opened W. W. Wickel Pharmacy in Naperville, IL. Naperville was a small farming town at that time, and our great-great grandfather and his son-in-law Louis Oswald sold books along with all of the other items in the store. In 1964 our grandfather opened our first official bookstore above the drugstore, calling it Paperback Paradise. Since then we have expanded and moved several times, opening our Downers Grove store in 1980 and a children’s wholesale warehouse bookfair company, Anderson’s Bookfair Company (ABCFairs), in 1982, now located in Aurora. In 2015 we opened our La Grange store  and in 2016 Anderson’s Toyshop in Naperville.  

The 5th generation that own and run the businesses today all started to work at a very young age at our family’s drugstore. Working alongside with your grandfather, parents, brothers, sister, and children is a family tradition that creates community within your family, and reaches your employees, your customers, and beyond. We are proud to have the sixth generation now working in the businesses. For 143 years we have lived and breathed this community; we are here to stay, thrive, and help make it a great place for all with whom we come in contact. 

 

Awards & Recognition for Anderson's Bookshops

2001  Retail Business of the Year - Naperville Chamber of Commerce

2002  Illinois Family Business of the Year  Loyola University Family Business Center

2002  Exemplary Partnership Award - Illinois State Board of Education

2002  Business and Education District 204

2002  Lucille Pannell Award - Best Children’s Bookseller (General store) for the best bookseller of children’s books in the nation

2002  Charles S. Haslam Award for Excellence in Bookselling - Becky Anderson Wilkins

2003  Business and Education Award Naperville Dist. 203

2005  Outstanding Alumni Award Naperville Central H.S. - Becky Anderson Wilkins

2006  New York State Reading Association Excellence Award

2006  Illinois State Board of Education’s Award of Excellence for community volunteerism - Becky Anderson Wilkins

2007  James Patterson Page Turner Award: buyer Mary Yockey

2007  Chicago Tribune Chicago’s 10 Best Bookstores

2007  Naperville Family History Recognition - Naper-Days Naperville Heritage Society

2008  The Education Center Community Partner Award - Becky Anderson Wilkins

2008  Building a Passion for Reading Award- Naperville School Dist. 203 - Becky Anderson Wilkins

2009  Voice of the Heartland Award from the Great Lakes Independent Booksellers Association: recognizing "a person or company in the book industry for a lifetime contribution to regional books," to Becky Anderson Wilkins, Anderson's Bookshops, Naperville and Downers Grove.

2010  Retail Business of the Year - Naperville Chamber of Commerce

2010  Small Business of the Year - Naperville Chamber of Commerce

2011  Publisher's Weekly Bookstore of the Year 

2015 Lucille Pannell Award - Best Children’s Bookseller (General store) for the best bookseller of children’s books in the nation