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The "Wong Fook Hing Book Store" chose the perfect name:
Last week, Wal-Mart cut the price of some popular new books to just $10, a slice of over 60%. Not willing to be out-done on home turf, Amazon matched them. Wal-Mart went down to $9. Amazon went to $8.99. Target jumped in tardily at $8.99. Then Sears jaunted into the battle and dropped some serious knowledge: books for free.
How? Buy any one of those deep-discounted books at Target, Wal-Mart, or Amazon, and send Sears the receipt and they'll give you a credit of $9 towards anything you buy from Sears online.
Sears says this is part of some campaign called "Keep America Reading" which would be more appropriately called "Keep America Buying Books". And buy books they'll do, if the $10 price point sticks past the holiday rush.
A tit-for-tat price war between Wal-Mart and Amazon accelerated late on Friday afternoon when Wal-Mart shaved another cent off its already rock-bottom prices for hardcover editions of some of the coming holiday season’s biggest potential best sellers, offering them online for $8.99 apiece.
“If readers come to believe that the value of a new book is $10, publishing as we know it is over,” said David Gernert, Mr. Grisham’s literary agent. “If you can buy Stephen King’s new novel or John Grisham’s ‘Ford County’ for $10, why would you buy a brilliant first novel for $25? I think we underestimate the effect to which extremely discounted best sellers take the consumer’s attention away from emerging writers.”
The remaining B. Dalton Bookstores, a division of Barnes & Noble, will all close at the beginning of next year.
The Hawk Eye-IA reports: "These are small-format, low-volume stores in malls, and their leases are expiring. This is in line with what we've been doing over the last eight years, closing 35 to 40 stores per year as their leases expire," said Lenore Feder in an e-mail statement.
An Urban Bookstore In Philly Finds Its Niche: Even in the recession, a Philadelphia bookstore that specializes in urban fiction, Black and Nobel is flourishing. Many of the titles are written by people who live in Philly. Owner Hakim Hopkins says urban fiction has increased in popularity over the past few years, following the trend of hip-hop music.
Excerpt from story: The bookseller also hopes to make e-book lending a centerpiece of its device, according to two people in publishing who asked not to be named because talks were confidential. Readers can not lend digital books on the Kindle, although books can be read on up to six separate devices linked to the same Amazon account.
Pull post at the NYT Bits Blog
Story on "Morning Edition" on NPR
Kelly Carmichael is a Sacramento State University senior studying to be an elementary school teacher. A book for one of her child development courses cost more than $170. But when a professor mentioned that she didn't have to buy the book because she could rent it for the semester, Carmichael says it was a no-brainer.
"For any title that is for rent, you'll see a sign that will show the new and used price, but also the rent-it-for price. So, for example, this text here, Infants, Child and Adolescents — new it would be $142, used it would be $106.50, and you can rent it for $58.34."
A church in Europe was recently converted into a bookstore:
Wired's Epicenter blog details the latest venture to come out of Mountain View CA, public domain books printed on demand.
"What’s hot off the presses come Thursday? Any one of the more than 2 million books old enough to fall out of copyright into the public domain.
And now Google Book Search, in partnership with On Demand Books, is letting readers turn those digital copies back into paper copies, individually printed by bookstores around the world."
The Friends of the Fargo Public Library, a nonprofit organization that raises money to fund library projects, operates a bookstore on the first floor of the downtown Fargo library.
The 259-square-foot bookstore, adjacent to the main stairway leading to the second floor, has scheduled a grand opening on Saturday.
“It’s a work in progress, but we’re happy it’s there,” Mary Kerbaugh, president of the Friends of the Fargo Public Library, said of the bookstore.
The new 54,000-square-foot downtown library opened this spring. It has twice as much space as the old library it replaced.
Incorporating a small bookstore into the new library was part of the planning process for the building, said Tim Dirks, library director.