Friday, July 22, 2011

Book Stores

It doesn't seem so long ago that I lamented the big book stores putting independent bookstores out of business.  Now I'm lamenting the demise of the big book stores themselves.  In the past year, we've lost two near us and now Border's is liquidating.  I do order books online, both new and used, and that makes me a part of the problem I suppose.

A friend and I were speaking about where we purchased books before the "biggies" came along.  I can't remember where the books of my childhood were purchased.  For the most part, we used the library but we also owned a fair number of treasured tomes.  The first actual bookstore (other than the old college one) that I recall is Brentano's on the concourse at The Pentagon.  A good chunk of my paycheck went to that delightful place.

                                Via Dreamsicle Day
I plan to head out and stock up!

In the meantime, construction on our new library is moving right along.  The day after our June groundbreaking, the local builders went on strike!  Fortunately, it was settled in a few days.  The ground has been turned up and over and leveled.  The one business that had to be razed is being removed this week.  All the trustees were presented real hard hats with our names on them.  They are on a shelf in one of the construction trailers.  I wonder if they'd actually let me onto the site?  If it weren't so hot, I might give that a try.

On second thought, I think I'll just stay in and drink...

....citrus water.

Wishing you all a good weekend!!


  1. I love browsing bookstores, partaricularly the ones that sell coffee. Love the smell of coffee and books. But, I'm a part of the problem too--I rarely ever buy books anymore. When I moved into Buttermilk Cottage, I seriously downsized,getting rid of most of a lifetime's collection of books. I just don't have space for them anymore. The library is my "go-to" place for books these days and I'm happy to say we have a very good one.

  2. that gorgeous pitcher sitting on the railing is scaring me that it might fall off. love that photo and the pitcher and the citrus water sounds good. it is sad the book stores are closing and some of it is due to economy but also to buying online and now the download e books for the I and E pads. for me it is now the library only and i do hope they continue to build new ones and keep the old ones.

  3. Your water looks very refreshing! It is truly a different world today! Stay cool:@)

  4. Citrus water is my favorite and I only wish I could somehow explain how crazy my mom is about books. Its not just because she is an author, she just has always loved books and we have A MILLION Of them at home. A million!

  5. I have always enjoyed spending time hanging around in a book store. One of my favorites is Myopic Books in Wicker Park. I miss the old book stores too but often order on line myself. I think that I will have a drink too,

  6. I am so excited about your new library!! I totally love libraries...and have exceedingly fond memories of the library in my hometown. The librarian (Mrs. Hubbs) was THE quintessential librarian...glassses, hair in a bun...about 100 years old!! She ran a tight ship and was quite stern. But she was loving, and we all loved her...respected her too.

    I'm part of the problem with bookstores, as I buy alot of my books online, used from Amazon.

    However, I must say, I HATE the big conglomerates!! I almost never shop at WalMart, simply because I hate that they have put all the little mom and pop stores out of business. And that is exactly what Barnes & Noble has done to the book business. It's very sad.

    Wishing you a wonderful day.


  7. Growing up we did not have a bookstore in our small town. The library was our own choice. I could always find an excuse to visit. Love your post! (the citrus water looks so refreshing) Stay cool!

  8. That's one of the great things about Cayman. No Walmart. No McDonalds. No Starbucks. No Malls. All the businesses here are 'small' businesses. We had terrible selection for book stores until last year when we got a Books & Books. It's fantastic. We have famous writers come (like Salman Rushie! Excite!) and there's loads of selection...its great. Now all we need is a comic book store and i'm set :)

  9. I love bookstores and yes, Border's and B and N put the little guys out of business -- but used bookstores, it seems thrive (there are several Half Price Books in the KC area) and books, after all, are books and used books are like used cars -- someone else paid for the biggest hunk of depreciation!!!! LOL!!!

    But I think besides online ordering, Kindle has put a dent into book sales (as the internet as put a dent into newspaper sales) so . . .

    But a success story of the Little Bookshop That Did -- is Rainy Day Books in Kansas City -- years ago -- in the 80's she started sponsoring author's events -- of course, to go to the event and meet the author you had to buy the book (at full retail price but the meet and greet was free) -- she's still a little bookstore but she's still in business. She has a nationwide reputation that authors love to come here -- she usually sells out her venue (which seats about 800) and of course, people often buy more than one full price book (great for gifts after all) -- some of the authors she's had:

    Condalesa Rice, George W., Laura Bush, Paula Deen, Ina Garten, Caroline Kennedy, Hillary Clinton and the list goes on and on and on.

    But I am sorry to hear of the demise of Border's -- it was always very busy whenever we went in there -- but maybe they just like the atmosphere there better than the library and they were readers not buyers!!!

    BTW, this is so long, I guess I should have done this as a blog post!!!! LOL!

  10. I am like you, I hear that all the Borders are closing here. ITs the only bookstore I loved going into. I am sick that I wont be able to go look through the books before I buy. I hate progress sometimes. Gone are the local mom and pop shops, hardware stores etc. With them goes our past so all we have are our memories.
    I love to hold and smell books. What are we to do now?

    Hey, I know you have got to be so proud of your accomplishments. Tell them who you are and get your name on a hard hat.

  11. I love books, book stores, libraries, and any place with books! It is sad to see Borders closing! I hope Barnes & Noble never does!!!
    I love that picture with the stack of books!!
    Have a great day and weekend!

  12. I love browsing bookstores and have a small collection at my place too. They are a very good company.
    Congrats on your new library.... :)

  13. all of our Borders have been gone for a while :( The only biggie left in our town is Barnes and Noble. There seems to be a lot of business in ours, but one never knows.
    I don't remember any book stores in the small town I grew up in. Our source was the library, and oh how I loved ours, since it was in THE coolest old building, complete with beautiful old oak shelves.

  14. I just heard about Borders earlier this week. It really saddened me. We do not have a borders anywhere around here, but this bodes ill for the other big book stores!! And how I love browsing through them, even the smell of the pages of the new books. Even better since they put overstuffed chairs in the stores. Thank you so much for the mention of Brentanos!!!!! That was my very first book store, and I have wonderful memories of it, but have not been able to remember it's name till you just said! NOW I know! I spent lots of happy time there. What do you think of the Kindles and other computerized reading pads? That might be worth doing a post on. The pitcher picture is just beautiful!! It was almost 100 when I woke up, it's to be 102 today with heat indexes of 120.

  15. I love browsing through books at those big bookstores. We still have our Borders in our nearest town, but a new bookstore that just opened a year ago has now closed its doors. (Really my favorite place to buy books is the thrift store!) That citrus water looks really good to me right now- it's stinkin' hot!

  16. I just got the email today that Borders was closing for good. We lost all of our Borders stores a while ago - so sad because I liked them much better than Barnes & Noble.

    I wish I could get to Illinois to take advantage of the liquidation sale but that probably isn't going to happen.

    I'll stay put and have a cool drink with you!

  17. We love going to the library! I rarely buy books, unless it is for book club. Our library was remodeled last year and it is quite nice. We make weekly visits. It's my first time here, you have a lovely blog and I'm your latest follower. If you have a moment I would love it if you stopped by my family's site. Have a nice weekend.


  18. Bonnie,
    I remember Brentano's. Loved it. I do love a bookstore but I am one of the Kindle people and because we don't have a bookstore nearby, I order online. I love Barnes & Noble in Florida just for the atmosphere but I don't go often. Change is sad sometimes.


  19. I was just in Chicago last weekend visiting my son and did a post on it this week on my brief time there. I've enjoyed your blog so much, Bonnie and need to leave a comment more often! I adore your idea and photo of citrus water. How perfect for these hot days of summer.

  20. I've loved spending time at bookstores since I was a kid and so miss all the ones that closed. The book dept. at Lazarus Dept. Store in Columbus was heaven to me as well as the library when I was young. Love the bookstores in Chicago too but, sadly we only have one bookstore left in the Cary area now. Then I started ordering on line.

    In May, I received a Kindle for my birthday so all my book reading is done on that and it's the best. It's so easy to read, lightweight, and buying a new book is almost instant. I'm reading "Cutting for Stone" now; interesting!

    Your citrus water would be great now in this hot weather! Have a good weekend!

  21. I heard about Border's... Wonder if Barnes and Noble is next??? People are doing so much reading online now --or even ordering online...

    Cannot remember if there was a bookstore in my small town growing up. We did have a library which I remember using. But--since we had alot of books in our home, I'm sure that my parents bought their books somewhere.... I'll have to think about that one.... Hmmmm....

    Have a good weekend, Bonnie.

  22. I love going to bookstores. My favorite thing about SF is how many more used bookstores they have than here in NYC! I could spend hours getting lost in them.

  23. That citrus water looks great! To repeat an oft heard commnet, "Its sooo hot here!" Yes isn't it funny how we are now missing the big bookstores as they too go out of business. I liked the scent in such a store and being able to browse and hold the books in my hands and look them over. Nothing quite like that online. Have a good weekend!

  24. Your citrus water looks so refreshing; perfect for these recod heats we are living.
    I can spend hours in bookstores; peace and serenity. Congratultions on a new library; they are a dying breed.

  25. Funny how purchasing my reading has changed. For me it went from library (with long waiting lists) to small book store (I loved ours...long gone) to Barnes and Noble and then to a combination of Amazon used and Kindle. Now (and I hate to say this) I go to Barnes and Noble, see what's new or what I'm interested in and then come home and hit the computer, see what NPR has to say re summer reading and then order online. Sad, isn't it? But I love to read and I'm going for the least expensive. I do still use the library for best sellers, but that's about all.
    And now the bookstore is only for last minute gifts. No wonder they're having trouble.

  26. Bonnie, your library progress is exciting!! Just think it is going to be more like a museum soon at the rate of the book store declines and more and more people using digital books. It's crazy isn't it? Something I would have taken for granted would have been around forever. Guess I may be getting a little ahead of myself... but I'm just sayin'.

    I love bookstores and libraries. The smell of shelves and shelves of books. Embarassingly, books are in stacks all throughout our house. I should pass some on to some good cause... I haven't mustered up the will yet.

    I am proud of your being intrumental in preserving these treasures. Kudos to you. blessings ~ Tanna

    ps I'd love a glass of that citrus water. =)

  27. I really hate to see Border's close. A good friend of mine met her husband there and she has gone into a state of depression now she knows their place will be no more. I think the kindle has affected book sales everywhere. I hope you can stay cool this weekend. Forecasts show the worst of your weather will break this weekend. Take care. Blessings...Mary

  28. Share your "Citrus Water" contents. The pitcher I agree is refreshing to see with the colors going on inside of it.
    What are your temperatures these days?

  29. It is terribly hot. Stay cool.

    I can remember growing-up the library was my bookstore. We didn't have a real bookstore to call our own. For years, I have been ordering my books online too. It is cheaper and more convenient. I think Amazon was Border's demise.


  30. Love bookstores! my problem is I love so much!! Always love buy some books ! Your citrus water look nice!! gloria

  31. I am so upset that my neighborhood Borders is closing. I am actually beside myself. *SIGH* Be sure to keep us updated with pics of the library. Stay cool,

  32. bookstores are my FAVORITE places. hands down. so enjoyed it here this morning.. cheers

  33. Interesting to think about buying books as a child. We did buy books but most of the books I bought would be at the drug store or through Scholastic Books at school. We vacationed in the same place for about 10 years or so an the small town had a book store and books would be one of my souvenirs. Your right though, most of the year it was the public library we turned to for books. It is sad about Borders but I have to say, I'm a regular Amazon and iStore customer though if I'm in Portland, it's Powells or Seattle, it's Queen Anne Books.

    Amazing you knowing about the wrought iron work in Charleston. Every where you look in the historic district there is something to see and it's beautiful.

  34. A trip to the bookstore was always a special occasion when my children and grandchildren were small. It's so sad to see that era come to an end. Using an e-book just isn't the same.

  35. wishing you a good weekend too!


  36. Those roasted tomatoes look so wonderful! My tomatoes are also late thsi summer.

    I love my local libray and thankfully it has saved me quite a bit of money over the years! :) I know you must be very excited to see your new library being constructed.


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