About Us

 

Meet Tom Roberge and Emma Ramadan: co-owners of Riffraff.

Tom grew up in Connecticut and served in the Peace Corps before landing in New York, where he worked in a variety of roles in the book world: bookseller at McNally Jackson; managing editor at A Public Space; editor at Penguin Books; publicist and bookstore liaison at New Directions; and deputy director at Albertine Books. Some of his favorite authors are Don DeLillo, Chris Kraus, and Lawrence Block. His favorite drink is a scotch on the rocks. 

Emma studied comparative literature at Brown University before completing a master's degree in translation at the American University of Paris. She was a Fulbright Scholar in Morocco, where she worked translating a number of Moroccan writers from French into English. Her translations also include the genderless novel Sphinx by Anne Garréta. Some of her favorite authors are Marguerite Duras, Anne Carson, and Marie NDiaye. She's recently become a big Mezcal fan. 

They moved to Providence in 2016 to pursue their dream of opening a bookstore bar. Riffraff draws its inspiration from the best independent bookstores and neighborhood bars, establishments that are welcoming and comfortable and integral to the community. It will be the kind of place where readers looking for a selection of thoughtfully curated books might sit down at the bar and ask their neighbor what they’re reading, and where those meeting a friend for a good inexpensive drink might also pick up a book at the same time.