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such a nasty woman | by maryann johanson

question of the day: How can we save bookstores?


I like bookstores. But I also like my Kindle. Is there a way to reconcile the two? For every time I download a book for my Kindle, I cringe a little, because it means a little bookstore somewhere suffers another little stab of its death by a thousand cuts. On the other hand, there’s no question that I’m reading more than I would — or at least reading different things — if I had to carry physical books around with me. Pretty much the only time I have to read is on the tube, and having the Kindle makes tube reading so much more pleasant.

How can we save bookstores? Or is it already too late? Have the big chains already killed off most of the really interesting independent bookstores? Has corporate publishing already killed off too much innovation in publishing that the freedom to publish is the ebook’s killer app? Do we want to save the chain bookstores, or only the indie ones? If we do save bookstores, what will they look like in 20 years, or 100? What do you like about bookstores that you’d like to save… and what won’t you miss about them?

(If you have a suggestion for a QOTD, feel free to email me. Responses to this QOTD sent by email will be ignored; please post your responses here.)

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