Too Many Bookstores?


Is there such a thing as too many bookstores? Apparently, for the residents of Westhampton Beach, NY, the answer is yes. Today The New York Times profiles the battle between two independent bookstores and the animosity that is running rampant in this small town. This all comes on the heels of a recent New York Magazine article about the rise of the independent bookstore. According to the NYTimes article, Books & Books opened its doors in July and have received a less than stellar welcoming (reportedly older women have marched into the store to yell at employees and they have even faced vandalism).  The problem is, Books & Books is around the corner from The Open Book and is taking away business. But isn’t the beauty of independent bookstores that no two look or feel the same? Every independent bookstore has its’ own character and charm with varying approaches to reaching out to readers. Independent bookstores provide people with a sense of community, access to book clubs, author signings, and frequent staff picks. With so many people up in arms over the rise of the big box bookstore and the Amazon epidemic not to mention the strain that e-book devices are putting on printed matter, can we really start complaining about too many independent bookstores? Do we want to dissuade independent’s from opening their doors?

{photo courtesy of Paz & Associates}

Comments are closed.