Hi. It’s me, Opie,
the dog of the store manager. I’d like to introduce you to my friend, Eleanor Roosevelt. ^ That’s her. She used to be the “special correspondent” of our shop dog team, but now that she’s not a baby anymore, it’s finally time for her to start work at the store. That’s where I come in. As senior store-hound, it’s my job to teach the junior store-hound how everything works. Here’s how the first day went. Read the rest of this entry »
As the manager of our books for young readers section, I could not be more delighted with all the ink being devoted lately to the topic of young adult fiction. Specifically, I’m thrilled at the focus on contemporary realistic YA books. One of our favorite authors, John Green, has been widely credited for this surge in demand for stories that don’t involve dystopias, zombies, or vampires. The only part of this flurry of attention I take issue with is the idea that realistic fiction for young readers is “new.” (See, for example, “How Reality Became the Hot New Thing in YA.”) Read the rest of this entry »
Okay, okay, I know I said I was retreating from the book reports, but all I meant was that I was freeing myself from my own sense of obligation. I’ll still write them when there’s a book I want to talk about, which happens to be the case. Read the rest of this entry »
Did you see Stephen Marche’s recent blog post for Esquire — How to quit Amazon and shop in an actual bookstore (and why you damn well should)? We did, and we couldn’t agree more:
A good bookstore isn’t just a place to buy books. The really good ones are bespoke tailoring for your narrative impulse . . . The real problem with Amazon isn’t that it’s strong-arming Hachette; it’s that it leads readers to buy books that they’ve already heard about. When you pick out a summer novel for yourself online, you’re going to pick the book that everybody else is reading, almost automatically . . . A good seller in a bookstore is infinitely superior in every way to a personalization algorithm. Even by entering a bookstore, you’re faced with literally a thousand choices that you’ve never been faced with before. Somewhere in there is something that’s entirely fresh to you, and will reward your soul by exposure. That’s what good books do, and good bookstores, too. They let you step out of your algorithm.