I have a warm spot in my heart for independent bookstores, as such a store paid for my college education. My family business was a bookstore. It is no longer around however, having gone out of business years ago. Blame Amazon?
Secondly, I read lots of books, and own even more. (Yes that implies that I buy books that I don’t read. I don’t feel bad about that. I enjoy books.)
Thirdly, I love, I mean, I LOVE Amazon.com. What convenience, what great prices, what free shipping. I even own some AMZN stock. In truth I bet in the last year I spent more money on books at Amazon than from local bookstores.
See the conundrum coming?
Whenever I am in a strange town, or out ‘shopping’ or on vacation, I can spend lots of time browsing bookstores. I will buy books sometimes, and sometimes I will write down book titles for later consideration, or even later Amazonning. Ok, so I am conflicted about this whole thing.
I would be very sad to see the local bookstore close.
Oh wait, the local bookstore in the town I live closed years ago. (We still have a used bookstore, which I frequent.)
I don’t have a punchline. I am not sure how I feel about this. Should I stop shopping at Amazon and give up the convenience and good prices? Should I never order a book on Amazon that I first saw in a local bookstore?
Here are three articles on this very topic, for your fascination:
Amazon’s Jungle Logic, an Anti-Amazon screed from a set of authors.