Urban Think! in Orlando Now, but Soon to be Gone


Another indie (FL) bookstore is about to close...Urban Think! Kim, from the blog Bookstore People stopped by when visiting relatives and spoke with the owner whose news was not good news. From the blog:

While my nieces were destroying the children’s section (I love being the aunt and just watching them), I distracted Jim by asking how business was going. Not great. He mentioned how the locals would drop by, pick up a dog biscuit for their pooch, then recommend he carry a great book they loved and bought from Amazon. Ouch! I suggested he try the message I saw from the Capitola Book Cafe – just don’t buy ALL of your books from Amazon. Alas, even before I could post this review, the store announced it would be closing at the end of the month. Bookstore closings tend to trigger terrific sales, so stop by to say goodbye and purchase.


From the Mercury News article that was linked to in the LISNEWS post:

"They'll say, 'Oh, we love you guys,'" said Richard Lange, one of the quartet of partners who own and operate the Book Cafe. But, say the customers, they can get the book cheaper at Costco or Amazon.com.

Why is Costco cheaper? Probably because they buy books in bulk from the publishers and get a discount for the large purchase. If publishers want to protect independent bookstores shouldn't they being selling books to all sources at the same price?

It's a question of volume and it's completely obvious to anyone who understand the economics.

If Costco can buy 3,000 of a particular publishers title, and Books 'n Such in Podunk, NE can buy 3 copies, should publishers charge Costco and Books 'n Such the same per unit? What do you think?

I get that the publishers are giving Costco a cheaper cost because they buy in bulk. But I keep hearing references to independent bookstores being critical to the publishers. The idea that publishers need the independents to spread the word on books. If that is the case why are the publishers screwing over the independents? If the independents need protection shouldn't the publishers be looking out for them?

If the publishers will not look out for the independents why should I? Publisher X sells a book to Costco for $5 and Costco sells for $10 and my local independent is charged $12 for the book and sells it for $15. The publisher sold those books to Costco. Should no one buy them from Costco? If I am being evil for buying the book from Costco why did the publisher sell to them?

In Podunk, NE the bookstore is called Amazon.com and they buy more than 3 copies.

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