One of my ‘unlived’ lives is owning a bookstore. Addicted to reading, I can fantasize the tinkling of the bell on the shop door as a book lover joins me in my quaint, welcoming shop. Imagine if you will, a cross between Marks and Company at 84 Charing Cross Road where Anthony Hopkins looks up to greet you and Meg Ryan reading to children in The Shop Around the Corner in the movie, You’ve Got Mail.
Though my husband used to say, Stepheny never met a bookstore she didn’t like, that isn’t quite true. We’ve all had the unhappy experience of visiting a bookstore where no one is able to make a suggestion when asked for a mystery set in Australia to give to a friend to read on the long plane ride there. No one can help with a book for a grandchild too old for Beatrix Potter and too young for Harry Potter. You ask yourself, could it be that no one working in the store reads? Then there is the joy of the bookstore where other browsers get into the act by naming books they loved when they overhear you asking the owner for a recommendation. The comradery of fellow readers is a balm for the soul.
We’ve all been concerned about the vanishing small, independent bookstore. As revitalization takes place on Main Street USA, we are thankfully seeing independent bookstores open again. In the immortal words of my granddaughter when her family moved to a small town in Wyoming, “What kind of a place is this if it doesn’t have a bookstore?”
In making amends to independent bookstores for the amount of shopping I do on Amazon Books, I announce with love and gratitude, this year’s THEME for the 2018 AtoZ Blog Challenge:
I invite you to join me as I pay tribute to individual far-flung stores from Raleigh, NC to Charing Cross Road in London and those in between. I hope this year’s theme will encourage you to never leave a bookstore without buying at least one book because life without books is unimaginable.
Image: The Fantasy Bookshop by Aimee Stewart found on Pinterest