Claiming Independence

In reading Twitter streams and blog posts it’s become apparent that Independent Booksellers are getting the attention they deserve.

Recently, while visiting one of my favorites, Zephyr Books, I was given a brochure that blew me away. In it are listed eight excellent reasons to shop at your local independent bookseller.

I’m listing a few of the great reasons to shop at an independent here and I’ve added some comments supporting why I think these aspects are so important. At least to me.

Many internet booksellers are not familiar with proper grading for condition. It’s common to see ex-library copies, marked and underlined copies, and copies in poor condition for sale. These are books that our local bookseller would reject for stock.

This happened to me once and only once. I never shopped at that online used bookstore again. One copy was so bad, I wouldn’t even consider donating it to my local Friends of the Library.

Don’t let this happen to you. Besides excellent web merchants such as Powells.com, I recommend checking out IndieBound.org as a place to find sellers in your area.

Many booksellers charge more than the true cost for shipping to make up for cheap prices. Most books are shipped via media mail; slow delivery and lost shipments are common. At your local bookstore you don’t pay for shipping, and you don’t wait for delivery.

The only time I’ve had to wait for a book is because they didn’t have it. They put me on a list to call when the book comes in. In the meantime, since the book was the first part of a trilogy, they set aside the other two books for me until that one comes in. No charge.

You can’t browse the books on the internet. At your local bookstore you find the books that you didn’t know about until you found them.

This last weekend, my husband and I stopped by after having lunch. He was looking for something in paticular, while I browsed. While doing so, I found several Artemis Fowl books and that trilogy I have on hold. (The Inkworld Series).

Talk about an impulse buyers dream. And an impulse buyer’s husband’s nightmare.

Finally the most important reason of all:

Your local bookseller is a member of your community and the money spent as your local bookstore supports the local economy.

On the back of the brochure, fourteen stores are listed. I thought I knew all the ones in my area. Apparently not. I don’t think I’ve ever been so happy to learn how ill-informed I was.

I will be creating a page dedicated to a number of these stores. In addition, I hope to be adding a widget on my sidebar for my favorite. It is my way of doing what I can to display my love and support.

So, do you know who your local indies are? Unsure? Check out IndieBound. If there is none nearby, I urge you to visit Powells.com.

Today is a good day to claim, celebrate, and support your independents.

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nat @book, line, and sinker

let me just say that i would TOTALLY support an indie shop…if there was one within a reasonable distance from my house. we used to have one that i patronized, but it closed. it’s a shame because i would spend a bit more in a place that’s local and more personal than a big box or online store.