Susanne Horman has been the owner of Robinsons Bookshop since 2007. She bought the business after closing the book on a 20-year career in strategic planning and market research. Her loyal customers are as passionate about books as her team.
Robinsons Bookshop dates back to 1963 when Philip and Moira Robinson opened the store in the main Frankston shopping precinct. At the time, Frankston Library was yet to be established and it was rare to find a bookstore anywhere.
“We have a loyal following of families who have stayed shopping with us for over 55 years,” explains Susanne.
She’s bound to help: “I love books and how they have the ability to change lives. It’s exciting to discuss the next new release with a customer and understand what books they have enjoyed and would recommend.”
The store has a page-turning team of professional career booksellers and casuals, many of whom are studying literature, editing or creative writing. “Getting the right books in the right hands is what everyone at Robinsons is passionate about,” says Susanne.
Susanne is proud to be part of the cultural hub of Frankston, and loves the community spirit and generosity of the people. After the Black Saturday bushfires, Robinsons co-ordinated a book drive. “We had an overwhelming response from the community – there was an entire truck full of donated books that we sent to families.”
For Susanne, Bayside is a best seller. “It’s a melting pot of popular and boutique stores. From groceries to clothes and of course books – there are lots of shopping options to choose from. And the beach is only a few hundred metres away!”
The shop is not short of novel ideas. Each month Robinsons runs a Blind Date with a Book. “We select our best books, wrap them up in brown paper and provide a three-word description. This lets customers discover new authors and not be influenced by a cover or name. It is just like a blind date – full of exciting opportunity!”