I love bookstores, as I am sure most of you do.
I would like to live in one (once they accidentally locked me in one and I would almost have to spend the night there!).
When I lived in Athens, I loved going to downtown bookstores and spending hours there.
I know many people like small bookstores, but I like the big ones, where you can stay for hours, looking, searching, reading and no one even notices you are there.
I never bought books online until last year, because I didn’t like reading in English yet. But when I moved to the Netherlands, I had to give up my bookstore trips. The reason: our two bookstores here (now they are even from the same chain) don’t have many English titles.
I used to order my greek books from public.gr and picking them up when I went to Greece for vacation. Then I finally started reading in English (no option, the books I wanted to read weren’t getting translated) and I discovered how perfect amazon.co.uk can be (and recently bookdepository.com).
I recently visited London (here you will find the book-related musicals I watched!).
I was so excited, I left a lot of space in my backpack to buy many books.
I memorized my Amazon wishlist and ran to Foyles…
…only to realize that it was way more worth it to order online and pay the shipping cost too.
More specifically, on of the books I had in mind was this:
The Heart Goes Last, by Margaret Atwood.
Amazon price: £12.91
Bookstore price: £18.99
6 pounds difference! You can buy a whole second book with that!
And all the other books were also more expensive (although usually smaller difference).
I ended up buying it because I realized this specific “Signed First Edition” by Foyles costs the same as the other editions from other bookstores. And I didn’t care about the “signature” (I haven’t read Atwood yet)…
… but I really liked the orange ending of the pages! The other editions (including the Amazon one) don’t have that as far as I know.
I thought also I should buy at least one book and that was the no1 bestseller at Foyles at the time, so it made sense. But I didn’t buy any more books (except two books from from the musicals I watched). Then I returned and made a huge order from Amazon.
And then another one, with used books.
So not only am I not supporting bookstores, apparently I don’t even support writers and publishers anymore 🙂
(although I do support the people that sell the used books!)
Nothing compares to a walk at the bookstore.
But should we buy the book after the walk or order it online? If we don’t need it immediately.
(if it is worth it of course, maybe for Greece there is small difference if you include the shipping costs)
One of my “dream jobs” is to work in a bookstore and even I don’t support them…
That does not sound good for the future of bookstores…
Here is an article about the future of bookshops, which doesn’t look that bad.
And here is an article about the new amazon bookshop… Hmmm… doesn’t look very promising…