Monday, July 16, 2007

Are Independent Bookstores a Dying Breed?

The last few weeks, I've been following the saga of Dutton's Bookstore over on Alert the Bear. This small, independently owned bookstore is one of my favorite places to visit when I am in Los Angeles, and the struggle to keep it open is both mind-boggling, frustrating, and completely predictable.

It's the same old story. Can independently run businesses survive in the world of and Borders Books? I mean, I certainly buy my fair share of books from both of those establishments. The selection, simplicity, and immediate gratification can't be argued.

But there is something about the personal touch of walking into a place like Dutton's (or Gulf of Maine Books here in my town) where an employee might point out something insightful like, oh I noticed you like Lois Lowry, you should really check out Cynthia Lord's new book Rules.

Anyway, the Dutton's story is important, and it's unfolding in an interesting way. Will being declared an official city "landmark" save the day? Check out the posts on Alert the Bear (original post on the series here), and this nice article on Why Saving Dutton's Matters. Then head down to your local bookstore and let them know how glad you are to have them around!

1 comment:

Kate said...

Fantastic question! I plan on spending an afternoon at Dutton's before I leave (on the 3rd).

Let's talk soon!