Wednesday, May 11, 2016

Books Are Back

Books are back
  • Sales at all book shops: up 2.5 percent in 2015
  • Sales at independent books shops: up 10 percent in 2015
  • No. of independent book shops: up 22 percent since 2009
Source: American Book Sellers Association, U.S. Census Bureau

Employee Dustin Holland checks in books at the Barbed Wire Book Store in Longmont on Tuesday. For more photos of the bookstore go to

Across the country, chain and independent book stores are alive and for the most part well, as readers reach out to buy physical books, to earmark pages, thumb through appendices, write in margins and immerse themselves in words.

Sales at all book stores rose some 2.5 percent last year, according to the U.S. Census bureau.
But sales at independent book shops rose even more, according to the American Book Sellers Association. In this category, sales have risen consistently every year since 2009, with sales in 2015 up 10 percent over the previous year. To date in 2016, sales are up 5 percent.

At the same time, the number of book stores is on the rise. Since 2009, the number of independent shops has increased 22 percent, growing from 1,401 to 1,712. And individual stores are expanding. By 2015, the number of locations had grown 34.8 percent, according to the book sellers association, growing from 1,651 stores in 2009 to 2,227 outlets last year.


Using a Sponsorship Model to Save a Small Bookstore

Amazing story . . .

"News headlines reporting the death of the independent bookstore were premature, just as Beatts is finding he was also premature in announcing Borderlands’ end. Big chains such as Barnes & Noble and Borders were predicted to wipe bookstores out in 1990s, and while many closed, several held on and even weathered the 2008-2009 economic downturn. Currently, Amazon holds approximately 29 percent of the book market compared with independent stores’ 10 percent. Yet, independent bookstores aren’t an endangered species, creating a niche market in the digital age with sales modestly rising and doing things Amazon can’t, such as holding events, inviting guest authors to speak and personalizing consumer transactions, everything Borderlands already excelled at."

 “There isn’t a formula here. I don’t know any two bookstores that do things alike. We’ve seen a multiplicity of models. Like anything in retail, you gotta keep working at it, keep mixing it up. It’s about connecting to your customers . . .”


Tuesday, February 2, 2016

The Cost of Bare Shelves

"Perhaps the strongest case for a household full of print books came from a 2014 study . . . Researchers measured the impact of the size of home libraries across 42 nations, controlling for wealth, parent's education and occupations, gender and the country's gross national product . . . After G.N.P., the quantity of books in one's home was the most important predictor of reading performance."


Wednesday, January 20, 2016

Bookstores Are Back

The small independent bookstore, long beaten down by Borders and B&N and then repeatedly kicked by Amazon, has risen from the ashes.  New stores are opening and old stores are opening up new branches in new locations.  Books and bookstores and reading are the wave of the future.


Monday, January 11, 2016

The Best Childrens' Books of 2015

Young People Prefer Print

Print is still more popular than e-books amongst readers aged 16-24, although teenagers are more likely to read e-books than their older counterparts, according to the results of a survey carried out for The Bookseller Children’s Conference.


Wednesday, September 30, 2015

E-Book Sales Slip, and Print Is Far From Dead

“E-books were this rocket ship going straight up,” said Len Vlahos, a former executive director of the Book Industry Study Group, a nonprofit research group that tracks the publishing industry. “Just about everybody you talked to thought we were going the way of digital music.”

But the digital apocalypse never arrived, or at least not on schedule. While analysts once predicted that e-books would overtake print by 2015, digital sales have instead slowed sharply.


Wednesday, August 26, 2015

A Move to Help Bookstores in Japan

Kinokuniya, the largest bookstore chain in Japan, has announced that it will snap up 90% of initial print run of Haruki Murakami’s latest title to sell at brick-and-mortar stores and make sure that customers who want to purchase the book will have to go to an actual physical bookstore. It is a move largely seen as a way to stall purchases through Amazon.

With over 60 outlets in Japan, Kinokuniya has approximately 10% of the domestic book market in the country. It will act the wholesaler and purchase 90,000 copies out of 100,000 scheduled first print run directly from the publisher Switch, then sell part of it to wholesalers and other bookstores.

Wednesday, July 29, 2015

Boy Who Couldn’t Afford Books Asks Mailman For Junk Mail To Read

 When his local mailman realized that Matthew Flores had a great desire to read but no access to books, he responded spectacularly.

Read more here.

Thursday, July 2, 2015

Unread Books are More Valuable to Our Lives than Read Ones

"Read books are far less valuable than unread ones. The library should contain as much of what you do not know as your financial means, mortgage rates, and the currently tight real-estate market allows you to put there. You will accumulate more knowledge and more books as you grow older, and the growing number of unread books on the shelves will look at you menacingly. Indeed, the more you know, the larger the rows of unread books."
- Umbert Eco

Read More About the "Anti-Library" HERE
Tsudoku: Japanese for leaving a book unread after buying it, typically piled up together with other unread books. Illustration by Ella Frances Sanders from 'Lost in Translation: An Illustrated Compendium of Untranslatable Words from Around the World.' Click image for more.

Tuesday, June 16, 2015

William Wordsworth

"Dreams, books, are each a world; and books, we know,
Are a substantial world, both pure and good:
Round these, with tendrils strong as flesh and blood,
Our pastime and our happiness will grow."