Can I have an AMEN?!
In other news, I received the mass e-mail from Borders CEO Mike Edwards yesterday confirming what had been rumored for months, that the company is filing Chapter 11. While the company isn't completely going out of business, it is closing several of its stores, including two in my hometown.
So, what does this mean? Well, it shows the tremendous impact that online book sellers, such as Amazon, as well as such technologies as Kindles and e-Readers, are having on the book industry. And, I find this all so very interesting, given that it was behemoth stores like Borders and Barnes & Noble that drove smaller independents out of business in the 1990s. Remember "You've Got Mail?"
"They're going hate us at the beginning, but..."
"But we'll get 'em in the end."
"Do you know why?"
"Because we're going to sell them cheap books and legal addictive stimulants."
- Joe Fox to Kevin Jackson, "You've Got Mail."
I admit, I do like the convenience of Amazon delivering books straight to my door, or with a Kindle, right to my hand. But, I also like to frequent one of the most beloved and oldest independent bookstores in town, Carmichael's. With two locations, this little shop is managing to thrive, or at least survive, in this economy. Why? Well, my theory is it's because both locations are in older, more urban neighborhoods near other local shops and restaurants, and within walking distance of where many of its customers live. Residents of these neighborhoods are passionate about supporting local retailers. And, Carmichael's made the wise move of partnering with local coffee maker, Heine Bros., so that customers can have easy access to the coffee shop while they peruse through the book stacks. The whole David and Goliath aspect of the small independents competing against such giant chains as Barnes & Noble with their in-store Starbucks, resonates strongly with people in our community.
So, what do you think of the Border's situation? And, do you support a local bookstore? If so, which one and why?
Image from IMG, via Google Images