Monday, June 18, 2012

Saving Bookstores One Store at a Time

As promised, during our drive down to Ward Pound Ridge Reservation on Saturday morning, Matt and I made a celebration of Saving Bookstores by stopping at two along our route. (It also forced us to take back roads down to the campsite, which not only meant no tolls, but also allowed us a gorgeous and quiet drive.) I have to admit that I was a little disappointed that #SaveBookstores wasn't a larger trend, but it seems the Facebook page was bursting with activity.

Blackwood & Brouwer - Kinderbrook, NY

                Divergent by Veronica Roth

This independent bookstore was small - yet quaint. In my mind, I had already chosen the books I'd hoped to purchase on this journey. However, the selection here was rather limited. Instead of being drawn to new titles on the shelf, I found that most of what they had on their shelves in terms of Fiction were titles I already owned (mind you, I own a lot of books, so this was probably my own damned fault.) My purchase of Divergent wasn't anything I got particularly excited about - it's a book I've been told to read by several people and hey - maybe I'll love it - I'm just not breaking out the band yet.

But, I'm not knocking this shop.  Instead, it's selection seemed to support local - local travel guides, history, lore, authors and artists. Which adds it's own charm - small town, small store, big heart. Matt and I were tempted into various corners to look through some of the pictorial histories of the area. The owner (it seemed to be a family operation, but I'm not entirely sure) was incredibly friendly. When I told her I was visiting because of this event and that I'd found her using Indiebound - she was ecstatic. The customers meandering around the store that morning seemed to know and love her well, taking time to chat with her by the counter as their kids picked out new books. All in all - if I lived in Kinderhook - I could see myself stopping by pretty frequently. 

                A Walk in the Woods by Bill Bryson
                Under the Banner of Heaven - Jon Krakauer 

What a gorgeous store in such a gorgeous town! I'm pretty sure I repeatedly murmured, "Wow," as we drove in. The store itself was pretty large and very well organized. After my customary browsing - drooling over the gorgeous shelves -  I ended up in the section that I'd been hoping to find, housing the two books I'd set my heart on. 

I'm not sure whether or not the woman I spoke with was the owner. I really - I'm so single minded sometimes that I forget to ask important questions. Like - nice to meet you, what's your name? Gosh - anyway SHE (all of the people in the blog post are pronouns. Not confusing at all.) was really excited to hear about Save the Bookstores and offered to take our picture outside of the store. It's too bad we couldn't fit the store's fun lime green bag in the photo. I did take  a picture of the books on my lap with the bag as a backdrop and then forgot to post that photo to Twitter: 

Thank you to Kelly Sonnack for starting this thing. It was a great event set to support something that is very near and dear to all of our hearts - books and the bookstores that sell them! 

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