About Us

Founded in 1994, First Place Books specializes in American, British and Irish first editions. Our bookshop deals primarily in the genres of literature, mystery, and nautical/adventure fiction. However, we are also very interested in the broader range of antiquarian books, children’s books and fine bindings etc., which will become obvious from the wide variety of books found in this web site. Currently we have a stock exceeding 12,000 volumes. Recently we have begun gathering fine volumes published during the Elizabethan era with a concentration on volumes associated with Shakespeare. Our focus and commitment is to deal only in fine books for the collector.

Kevin Kinley began First Place Books in 1994 in St. Mary’s County, Maryland. He and his family moved to Walkersville in 1997 and have operated the business from their home ever since. Kevin graduated from Cleveland State University in 1974 with a degree in Theatre and then completed his MFA in Directing From the University of Iowa in 1977. He worked at the Folger Theatre for eight years then moved to St. Mary’s County to create and operate The Maryland Shakespeare Festival at Historic St. Mary’s City and St. Mary’s College of Maryland. After several years of guest directing at theatres around the country he began selling books through the venerable and much missed AB Bookman. He began selling on-line in June of 1997. Though they have separate and very exclusive interests First Place Books is very much a family affair with wife Elizabeth and daughter Kate suffering equally with patience and good humour in a house full of books. Molly the dog suffers as well but typically lacks the aforementioned commendable traits. Sadly, Molly the dog died on July 12, 2015.  We miss her dearly.