Blue House Books is The Write Place: Spotlight On Samantha Jacquest

Blue House Books

“Just keep an eye out. You never know what we’re gonna be doing next.” – Samantha

We open up a chapter on Samantha, the owner of Blue House Books and see how her story goes. So wait to turn the page with this exclusive Go Downtown Kenosha interview.

Can you give us a little rundown of the history of Blue House Books?
Samantha: I started in 2017 as a pop-up bookstore, and I slowly grew my customer base and following into what we are today. Now, we are a brick-and-mortar location in downtown Kenosha. We’ve been a full brick-and-mortar store for three and a half years.

Can you describe the products and services that you offer your customers here at Blue House Books?
Samantha: Of course, books are our main focus. We offer about 90% new books and also some used ones. Additionally, we have a variety of gift items, including literary-themed candles, purses, stationery, toys, and stuffies for kids. We also host numerous events such as midnight release parties, book clubs, children’s story time, and collaborations with other local businesses like workshops with Equinox and Modern Apothecary.

And people can find all these events on your social media and website?
Samantha: Absolutely. We keep them well-updated. Our website is

What makes Blue House Books stand out from all the other great businesses in downtown Kenosha?
Samantha: Well, first of all, we’re all fabulous, so let’s start there. But Blue House Books is a full-service independent bookstore, so there’s something for everyone. Even if you’re not an avid reader, we have something for you, whether it’s a funny book, a puzzle, or a gift item. We cater to everyone, including families and friends.

What is something about downtown Kenosha that you would like new or future residents to know about?
Samantha: Downtown Kenosha offers a variety of activities and amenities for everyone. There’s always something to do, whether it’s dining out, enjoying the scenic lakefront, or attending community events. It’s a great place to live and work.

What are some of the things that you personally like to do in downtown Kenosha?
Samantha: I’m a big fan of coffee shops, which pair perfectly with books. I enjoy visiting our local coffee shops, trying out different restaurants, and participating in community events, especially during the warmer months.

Speaking of coffee and books, don’t you write a blog?
Samantha: I sure do! The blog is called Books, Beans, and Brews. Each week, I pair a different book with a signature coffee or beer from one of our local establishments. I also discuss exciting topics in the book industry and recommend books loved by myself or my staff.

Where can people find this blog?
Samantha: You can find it on and we also share it on our social media platforms.

April 27th is Independent Bookstore Day. Before we delve into what BHB is doing for the day, can you tell us what Independent Bookstore Day is?
Samantha: Independent Bookstore Day is an annual holiday celebrated in the US on the last Saturday in April to acknowledge what makes our independently-owned bookshops so special! Each shop plans their own party in their own way; here at Blue House Books, we always do some type of author appearance and additional celebrations with sales, exclusive items and more!

What does Blue House Books have in store for this Independent Bookstore Day?
Samantha: This year is shaping up to be our biggest celebration yet! Excited readers have already started celebrating by participating in our Passport Program with other area bookstores, where customers shop at several bookstores and receive prizes! At Blue House Books on April 27th, we will have sales, gifts with purchase, giveaways, exclusive and limited edition items, and more! Simultaneously at the Ralph J Houghton Performance Center located in Reuther Central High School, four Midwestern authors will gather for a panel discussion and book signing! Jeneva Rose, Mary Kubica, Lindsay Currie, and John Milas–all authors of thriller and spooky books–will talk about their love of reading and writing, their favorite books, and why independent bookstores are so important. Tickets for the author panel are available on our website:

What makes this year’s celebration bigger and better than last year’s?
Samantha: I started ordering the exclusive and limited edition items and reaching out to book authors as early as October last year, and starting in January, we started working closely with our friends at The Lettering Machine getting our IBD 2024 logo ready and planning what merch to offer.

How far in advance do you start prepping for your event for Independent Bookstore Day?
Samantha: I started ordering the exclusive and limited edition items and reaching out to book authors as early as October last year, and starting in January, we started working closely with our friends at The Lettering Machine getting our IBD 2024 logo ready and planning what merch to offer.

What does Independent Bookstore Day mean to you?
Samantha: Independent Bookstore Day is a chance for us to thank our community for supporting us, and a chance for our customers to show their appreciation. Independent bookstores do so much more than just sell you a product. We promote literacy, nurture passions and hobbies, bring amazing events to the community, and so much more! We love that we have the opportunity every year to celebrate with our community!

What else do we need to know about your Independent bookstore Day event?
Samantha: Blue House Books will be open extended hours on Independent Bookstore Day, April 27th, 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. The author discussion will take place at Reuther, doors open at 1 p.m. and the event starts at 2 p.m. A ticket is required which includes a book from one of the participating authors. You can grab your ticket online in advance until April 25th. After that, you can get your ticket at the door for an additional $5.

Independent bookstore Day at Blue House Books Saturday, April 27th!
See the event page by clicking here

So, last question. What’s next for Blue House Books?
Samantha: Oh my gosh, where do we begin and where do we end? I have so many plans. I’m never stationary, so we would love to expand and eventually have a beer, wine, and coffee bar. (STAY TUNED) There is space within our store now that we could expand into, so that’s kind of the immediate hope. You know, we could have a second location one day. We want to host bigger and better events and start to attract some big-name authors to town. Just keep an eye out. You never know what we’re gonna be doing next.

UPDATE : I recently caught up with Samantha and had to ask here again about the hot rumor on the street..

We heard a rumor that you may be expanding Blue House Books? Can you confirm or deny? If so? Spill the tea?
Samantha: I don’t want to say anything firm yet, because there is no official plan or date in place, but I will say we definitely have plans and ambition to expand in the near future.

Blue House Books is located at 5915 6th Ave. A
262-612-5525 •
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Q&A and Photos by Donny Stancato • Concept by Donny Stancato & Jenna Zeihen • Edited by Meridith Jumisko & Donny Stancato