Thursday, February 19, 2009

how many bad days in a trend

Hail and farewell, yet another independent shop is in dire straits.
I've never heard of this bookstore in Ann Arbor Michigan, but the comments section makes me wonder yet again if something more fundamental is at work in some bookstores.
The comments page expresses lament for a local shop gone in an internet age etc,. but there's a high number of entries that put the bead on a chilly staff or a feeling of unease from the place.
This is something that comes up again and again in these circumstances, and I'll never understand it.
So if there's anybody out there who has ever been put off by a bookstore, I'd like to hear about it. Even if it was us.
Posted by Dave


Clare said...

Have never been rebuffed by friendly Words Worth staff, Dave!

I'm sad to hear Shaman Drum is in trouble. They have consistently stocked our books, which is very unusual for a US trade book store. Perhaps it speaks to what one commenter thought of as a lack of general appeal, but I can't hate them for it!


RW Hickey said...

I must confess that a certain high-profile indie store here in Toronto forever lost my business after I was mocked sotto voce by the clerks for buying a book that they thought was beneath them and then having the audacity to ask for a plastic bag. It was snowing outside, so I didn't think the request was that unreasonable. As a former bookseller and lover of bookshops, I was put out for the rest of the day.

That is the exception, however -- and I fact, I feel like many booksellers are ow stepping up their game, knowing that they have to set themselves apart. I loved having the seller at Type personally recommend the book I was looking at, and a recent visit to This Ain't the Rosedale Library showed me what a brilliantly curated bookstore could look like.

But the snobs are out there, and although it was cute in High Fidelity, it's not nearly endearing in person.

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