In Mayenne, Alice and the land of a thousand books

Alice and the Mange Livre will be present on Saturday January 7, 2023 at the Laval market. © Fred Martin

Alice Strady left the Paris region to live Parne-sur-Roc. With the Eat-Bookit steps into the markets of Mayenne.

From childhood, Alice loved books. He spent his pocket money on the small independent bookstore in his village on the Ile de France. Quite naturally, when the time comes to consider a professional orientation, it is librarian or bookseller.

Escape to the Paris Region

A course of study led him to manage orders and supplies for a large-scale cultural space for six years. Then the girl became a mother. “With my husband, we thought that the region of Paris with children was no longer possible. We wanted to leave and the West tempted us. We like this region because we vacationed there. »

Mayenne, in case of health

“In July 2020, there was a new wave of Covid and the news talked about a cluster in Mayenne. We weren’t sure where it was, so we looked at the map. We told ourselves it was well placed between Paris and on the coast and one day we would go and see what Laval looked like. The couple did in January of the following year. “There weren’t many people on the streets and everything was closed because of the reconfinement, but the city so beautiful with all its lights. On the way back we looked at accommodation around Laval and we moved after a few weeks to Parné-sur-Roc. We fell in love with this small city of character. Working my husband in Laval and I found a job right next to my house, at the Épicerie des Serres. At the same time, I matured my project. »

On the way to a festival

The project in question is a traveling bookstore, to go to villages that don’t have one, with a little tea room corner because Alice has learned that books and cookies go together.

When I was a teenager, on the way to the Vieilles Charrues festival, with my parents we were looking for something to eat. In a village in Brittany, we found a place selling pastries among the books. I found this magical place, a real little corner of paradise! Alice Strady

The young woman wanted to copy this model, adding roaming to it. But who says roaming the car says.


“In December 2021, I requested 8,000 euros on a crowdfunding platform. But the participation only reached 6,000 euros so I didn’t get anything. I decided that the end of the year was not a good time to ask for money and I made another request in the spring, on the same platform. There, I asked for 10,000 euros, because I refined my provisional budget, and I got them. Then I took management and communication training offered by Initiative Mayenne, which also gave me an honorary loan, and I supplemented my financing with a bank loan. I found an old Veolia truck that had been completely restored. »

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A converted truck

Alice entrusts the layout of her 12 m van3 to the neighbors of Collective R at Forcé, which repairs furniture with recycled materials. During this time he had selected five distributors and prepared its first orders.

I have about a thousand books to choose from and can order books on demand.

On the stairs

If the truck is not fitted with a canopy until next spring. Alice has been installing Mange-Livre in the markets for a month. This week, for example, it will be present Monday morning in Craon market, Wednesday morning in Cossé-le-Vivien, Thursday morning in Evron, Thursday afternoon in Bonchamp, Friday morning in Louverné and Friday afternoon in Parné- sur -Rock. Le Mange Livre is also present every Saturday at the Laval market.

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