Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Where Do You Buy Books? by Andy Scheer

If you answer with something that ends with “dot-com,” I understand. With so many titles to buy, it's tempting to save a few dollars. I've done so often. But savings comes at a price.

This past weekend I got a fresh reminder of the worth of a real, independent bookstore. My wife and I drove an hour to a signing by a favorite author.

I'd never visited this store, but I found it instantly welcoming. Near the front door was a display stacked with copies of the latest release, plus previous titles. While we waited for the event to begin, we took turns browsing.

At the information desk, a bookseller was happy to answer questions. She even walked me halfway across the store to make sure I found the right section. All the while, I kept being distracted by the face-out titles. Not at all like searching and clicking online.

As we waited, the air was filled with readers talking about books – titles by the evening's author and others. Recommendations flew back and forth. Like social media without the media.

I came home with a newly signed hardcover, a few signed back copies, and a determination to visit again, the next time I was in the area.

I hope you have your own favorite local booksellers. And if you're looking for a store while on the road, here's a link to the Better Places to Buy Books database, compiled by Kate Brittain and featuring information on more than 2,000 independent bookstores in the U.S.


Kristen said...

I love "A Book for All Seasons" in Leavenworth, WA. It is little and cozy and the people are nice. They will order in anything I want even if they don't have it in stock. I buy books for my 3 boys there. But I only buy e-books for myself. But I just found out that some of an e-book sale can go to your local bookstore if you buy though Kobo. So cool.

Diana Flegal said...

My favorite browsing book store is The Champagne Bar Book Store here in Asheville. And then I enjoy our B&N too. I'm with you Andy, love seeing and touching books- reading the back covers and adding to my wish list.

Andy Scheer, Hartline Literary said...

Thanks, Kristen for the tips about special orders and e-books.

Linda Glaz said...

Yes, there's nothing like that experience!