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About Us

Our Story

Adventure Bound Books opened its doors June 23, 2018.  Our store is located on S'atsoyaha & Catawba Land, in downtown Morganton, NC.  In September 2019 the bookstore moved out of the original 550 square foot shop into a 1,500 square foot storefront just up the sidewalk from the original location on Sterling St.  In August 2021, the bookstore moved, once again, into an almost 3,000 square foot store front on West Union St.  We've been building community through stories since 2018 and we are thankful for the community's continued support of our mission and vision!

We aim to disrupt mainstream expectations of retail stores and strive to influence positive social change in our community.  We believe in reading and having access to diverse stories; that tolerance is simply not sufficient; that you, reader, are worthy and wonderful.  We aim to offer a space where all are welcome and feel loved and affirmed.  ​At the core of what we do, Adventure Bound Books is more than just a retail space where books are sold and purchased.  We strive to create and maintain a safe space for all readers in our community.  We believe that all readers should have access to books that feature characters that "look like them" in whatever way that matters to the reader and that tell stories that readers can identify with, as well as stories that readers can learn from.  When we read stories about characters like us, we are affirmed and learn that we can be the heroes in our own stories.  When we read stories about characters who are different than us, we develop empathy.  We partner with local groups and schools to support the freedom to read and students' rights to have access to diverse books.  

Our goal is to be your independent bookstore of choice in Burke, McDowell, Catawba, Caldwell, Alexander, and surrounding counties by getting to know our customers' reading interests in order to offer a customized and personal experience at every visit.  On the shelves you'll find new and used books - Indie Next List favorites, new releases, best sellers, classics, fiction, fantasy, science fiction, romance, young adult books, books on nature and outdoor themes, religious, spiritual, and philosophical books, and an entire children's area with books for the youngest of readers through middle grade readers.  You can also find book-related gifts and educational items - book-themed shirts, hats, and socks, funny and snarky candles, literary themed tea, baby gifts, tote bags, puzzles, plush toys, and book lights.   Adventure Bound Books also offers programming - book clubs, Saturday afternoon Story Time, Storybook Camp in the summer, annual writing contests, regular poetry open mic events, and more - as well as an event space which offers opportunities for book clubs to meet, and a space for local writers to come and create.  We bring local and regional authors to town for book signings and conversations as well. 

Adventure Bound Books has been honored several times over the years.  In 2019, the bookstore receive the Downtown Distinguished Award With a Cherry On Top, an award recognizing exemplary customer service.  In 2020, Adventure Bound Books received the Downtown Distinguished Award Breath of Fresh Air, recognizing its innovative and unique event and program offerings.  Most recently, Adventure Bound Books was voted as Best of Burke 2021 in the bookstore category, and in 2022, Adventure Bound Books was chosen as the Ally of the Year by Catawba Valley Pride!

Additionally, bookstore owner, Angela Shores, was interviewed and included in the published phonebook style work Call Me Ishmael where she chats about the importance of independent bookstores, community, and changing the world with one of the book's co-authors, Stephanie Kent.  Inclusion in the published work is quite an honor!  In 2020, Angela was also honored by North Carolina Main Street as being recognized as the City of Morganton Main Street Champion!




Angela Shores (She/Her)

Bookstore Owner & Bookseller

Angela began reading in preschool and hasn't stopped since!  She was the child who brought her book to the supper table, would be immersed in the current read so deeply that she often didn't hear anyone attempting to get her attention, and in middle school, sat with the other kids who brought their books to read at the lunch table.  You'll probably see her with her nose in a book if you ever run into her around town. Her passion for reading became a passion for learning which fueled the pursuit of her bachelor's, master's, and doctoral degrees, and a little extra coursework along the way.  This excitement for books and learning sparked the idea for the bookstore.  She aspires to ignite a similar passion in others through books, programming, and conversations about the books everyone is reading as part of the bookstore community.  When asked why she opened an independent bookstore, her response is "to change  the world".  Initiating and offering a platform for positive change in the immediate community in order to change the world is a driving force for the activities and programs offered and books curated at the bookstore. In order to  launch the new adventure, Angela is blending a background of retail experience, work as a mental health therapist and career counselor, and experience as a college professor.  From a decade of experience as a mental health therapist   and college professor, she has learned how critical it is to develop strong relationships with others and has honed skills for inspiring in others a drive to learn and grow.  She brings the skills for getting to know people and develop relationships to the retail bookstore business because she believes it is more than a transactional relationship; it is more than trading a book for money.  Getting to know patrons, what their reading interests and preferences are, and relating to them around books and ideas is the foundation to a bookstore that serves the community in which it lives.  She also brings her skills in teaching and developing academic programs to her new bookstore life in order to plan events and programs for children, youth, and adults of all ages.In 2020, Angela was honored by being selected the Morganton Main St. Office's Main Street Champion.  


Anna Brown-Walker (She/Her)

Events Coordinator

(Picture coming soon!)

Anna (she/her) is a Morganton native with a love for reading. She has a bachelor's degree in Mass Communications with a concentration in Film and Visual Media from UNC Asheville, as well as a minor in French. Previous experience includes coordinating events as part of the Community Affairs and Tourism team for the town of Valdese.  She has a passion for community theater and film, with over 12 years of experience on and off stage including directing multiple productions.  Her favorite novels include Little Women, To Kill a Mockingbird, the Harry Potter series, and anything in the crime/thriller/mystery genre. She is a mom to three and loves living in this community. She is excited to be a part of the team at Adventure Bound Books!


Henry Beall


Henry is a student at Freedom High School, actively involved in clubs after focused days of academics.  His favorite books are Lord of the Rings, Moneyball, and Dandelion Wine.  Henry is responsible for many of the behind-the-scenes tasks that are foundational to your bookstore experience, including shelving books, pricing and labeling books and gift items, managing our recycling in order to help take care of our planet, and overall store cleanliness. 








 Nate Carswell (He/Him)

 Bookseller (Bio coming soon)









Pam Hildebran


Pam is the youngest of eight children, born to and raised by Agnes and Virgil Hildebran, who began their married life during the Great Depression. Her parents had books, magazines, and newspapers all around them, and "Mamma read to me when I was very young." School and education were prized in the home, that reverence propelling Pam toward an undergraduate degree in Sociology from UNC-Chapel Hill and a graduate degree in English from UNC-Charlotte. She has taught in public and private universities, colleges, and community colleges in three states. Pam's post-college employment history began in southwest Louisiana as a VISTA volunteer, followed by honing her secretarial skills via the Area Health Education Centers (AHEC) program in Chapel Hill and as a Kelly Girl in Charlotte; tenures at WBTV, Home Depot, Office Depot, Panera Bread, and Caldwell Hospice and Palliative Care. "New Orleans is the city of my heart; when I moved there, I fell in love with jazz, having much earlier in my life recognized the power of music, first via AM radio stations late into the night, followed by the Beatles (George is my favorite) who changed my life." ​ When asked about herself, Pam wrote, "I love all animals, but thanks to reading Alice Walker, I realized that cats (of all sizes and temperaments) are my "familiars." Books, books, books. Music, music, music. Cooking and eating. Drinking coffee from morning to night. Spending time with family and friends. Listening and talking. Talking about what we read, what we think, what matters most to us. Learning new things that I didn’t even know I needed or wanted to know (thank you, NPR).  There is so much to see, to know, to experience, to share. Every day can be an adventure." 




 Kendall Sawdy (He/Him)


 (Bio coming soon)









Riley Sette (She/Her)

Graphic Design Intern

Riley joined the team in February 2023.  She is a junior pursuing her Associate's degree in Fine Arts at Burke Middle College. She is a Colorado native who moved with her family to Morganton in early 2020.  Digital Art is her passion and long-term career goal. She has been drawing since the age of three and you've likely seen her art displayed at Catawba Meadows Park as part of the project that brought high school students' art to the walking paths there.We're excited to have Riley on the team working on special projects including our Summer Reading Program, Grown Folks Book Fair, the bookstore's 5th birthday, and fun pieces for year-round happenings.  Make sure to join us for Riley's Showcase on May 18th as part of the Downtown Morganton ART Crawl!

The Call Me Ishmael Phone Book: An Interactive Guide to Life-Changing Books Cover Image
ISBN: 9781982140588
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Avid Reader Press / Simon & Schuster - October 13th, 2020