Good-Bye, Book Shop


Unrepentant Liberal
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Milwaukee, Wisconsin
Today, it was announced that a local independent bookseller has decided to close the chain. There was, briefly, a branch in my neighborhood.
When my teen-aged nephew came to mow my lawn, help me around the house, or just to get away from his parents, our favorite way to have lunch was to go to The Schwartz' shop, find a book or two, then cross the street to get a table by the window in our fave cafe to eat, people-watch, read, & discuss our books.

While I was sorry to see it leave the neighborhood, I'm even sorrier to say that I didn't go to the nearest branch after the one in my area closed. It required taking a bus downtown, then transfering to a second bus for the ride to the nearest Schwartz, & there is a Borders where I'd tranfer buses.

A couple of months ago, the other book shop in my neighborhood closed:

I did shop here; I strongly supported the vision of the women who owned, & the mostly volunteer staff who operated the shop.

If there is an independent book shop in your neighborhood or town, please support it. Huge places like Borders & Barnes & Noble are great, with vast collections of music & videos as well as books, but nothing can beat going into the small, local book shop where you're known; where you're greeted (maybe by name) by someone who shares your passion for a good read, by a staff memeber who might know your tastes & will recommend something you'll like, or maybe even put aside the only copy of something the seller knows you'll want to read.

I have to go to a local bookstore (People's Books) to get some of my textbooks (like for my Ojibwe classes) because the books aren't in any of the other stores.

By the way, thanks for the "heads-up". I prefer to hear about it prior to the Out of Business sign (unlike what happened to a few of my favorite ceramics suppliers [like local ceramics stores and Duncan, who made almost all of my favorite supplies/molds].)

Phyllis Sidhe_Uaine
I will shop at a Mom & Pop independent business over a corporate chain wherever I can. It keeps the money in the local economy, instead of having it shipped off to the black hole called the stock market.
There used to be a great website called You could search all the little mom and pops that were associated, they catagorized the quality of their used books, whether they were marked or signed, what edition, dog eared etc. It was a joy dealing with the group and you could call the shop to see what else they had and get a package deal on shipping.

A****n bought them out. And when I talk to the shops that use A****n they are required to so deepply discount and a large percentage of 'shipping and handling' goes to corporate and not them, they lose out on the deal. And go ahead buy 10 books from the same shop a. you can't contact them, you can't find out who they are, and b. you'll pay seperate shipping and handling for each and every book.
I prefer the used book shops. The smaller new-book shops don't carry as many exotic books, making me wish I were someplace else. They cater to a completely different set of people, I guess. Used books are more affordable, older, and you can find gems lost in the stacks.