Bookstores — these beautifully torturous sources of inner turmoil for us poor bookworms. Do we go inside and buy books? Browse while leaving our wallets in the car? Avoid them altogether because we know our weaknesses? I don’t know! I DON’T KNOW!
Actually I do know. All good bookworms are fans of bookstores, or at least should be. But, despite our rabid love for them . . . we tend to think that books in bookstores are overpriced. The truth is, books online are discounted, so that makes the bookstores look like grubby money-thieves. While in reality, books in bookstores are normal prices. Even though we all love a good deal, I want to take a moment and share some of the benefits of buying from a bookstore:
1. You’re supporting a bookstore.
Aka: you are keeping the world turning. YOU ARE ESSENTIALLY SAVING HUMANITY EVERY TIME YOU BUY A BOOK FROM A BOOKSTORE. (Tweet this) Why wouldn’t you want to be saving the world and buying a book at the same time? Come on, people.
We hear of Borders shutting down or Hastings declaring bankruptcy and we panic because, “Oh no! The booooooks!!!! What will I do?” Well…we’ll probably do what we’ve already been doing. Go browse Amazon or The Book Depository. 😛
2. You get to smell the book first.
And it’s not going to smell like it was traveling in cardboard for 5 days. Don’t get me wrong. Book mail is the best. But it’s not quite as fun as going on an adventure in a real bookstore, finding a new book, and making sure it smells magical and papery before bringing it home like a newborn baby. 😛 The scent of a book is important. It’s our first clue on whether or not it’ll be worth our time.
3. You get to browse the books and pick the best copy before purchasing.
This is a big one for me. When I decide, “Okay, I want to buy Renee Adieh’s newest book” I take every copy off the shelf and then select the best one. That means the one with the least scuffs, the most perfect looking dustcover, and the one without fingerprints on it. And I don’t feel guilty AT ALL. Being choosy is my right. Leave the grubby copies for the latecomers. They should have come sooner. I’ve had too many books arrive from Amazon with dented corners or crumpled page chunks. At a bookstore…I am in control.
4. You get to read that baby THE SAME DAY if you want to!
The same hour! Even with Amazon Prime, that 2-day shipping thing can feel like 800 pages of trudging to Mt Doom while you wait for the book to arrive. And then what if your reading mood changes before it gets to you? So much can go wrong! AHHH! But with a bookstore, you can fall in love and decide to spend the rest of your lives together all in the same day. *swoony sigh*
5. You discover books you didn’t think of.
Get this, I once bought a book from Barnes and Noble, read it, and hated every little thing about it. EVERYTHING. One-star! Death! Burn it! So I waltzed back into the store, plopped it on the counter and told the lady, “I hated this book. Am I allowed to return it?” (Yes, sometimes my rabid bookworm comes out.) Not only did she help me return it for a full refund, but then she asked me about my reading tastes, movie tastes, etc. and then recommended a different book for me. AND I ADORED IT. This can’t happen online.
Can you imagine trying to call an Amazon representative and them asking you, “What are your reading tastes? Oh here, try this book.” Ha! As if. Now, if you asked a bookstagrammer. . .
6. Buying books from the store helps keeps them in the store.
Some people might argue, “But the author gets more money if you buy it online!” Um…not really. Buying a book from the store helps keeps those books in the store. It shows the store that keeping that book on the shelf meets the needs of readers. So when a friend of mine gets published and her book is in the store. That’s where I go to buy it. And, in turn, this helps the author get more than just a single book sale. This helps others see their books, too. Besides, then you can take a selfie with the book in the store and tag your favorite author in it on Instagram or Twitter and totally make their day.
7. You meet other bookworms
Introverted fangirls UNITE! 😛 I was once browsing the YA section in Barnes & Noble and there was another lady in the aisle. I picked up a book and started reading the back. “Oh, that’s a good one,” she piped up. “And it’s clean, too!”
“You’ve read this?” I asked.
“Yup! I’m a librarian at the high school, so I spend a lot of time in these aisles.” She reaches for a book. “This is one of my favorite series.”
It turned out we had pretty much THE EXACT SAME READING TASTES. So I spent the next ten minutes grabbing every book that I’d been considering reading, and asking her thoughts on them. She helped me whittle down my pile to a few good ones to pick from that day and I left with a bookworm friendship. Hard to run into someone while browsing a webpage.
Why do you like to buy books from a bookstore? (Tweet this!)
What’s the last book you bought from a bookstore?