Another week means another round of bookish news! This week we have quite a lot to cover so let’s just get into it and see what happened!
Book Stores Struggle
Many book stores are currently struggling with keeping operations going during the pandemic. This week alone we saw statements from two famous bookstores asking for help from customers: Strand Bookstore in New York City and Shakespeare and Company in Paris. The two stores say they’ve dropped in sales by 70-80% and face closure if customers don’t choose them over online market giants like Amazon. The post from Strand was followed up with a tweet from a former employee criticizing the store for laying off staff and mismanaging PPP loans; tweet shown below:
With so many independent bookstores struggling, there has been a huge push to shop locally. The hashtags #ShopIndie and #BoxedOut help show support for independent book stores. We also have sites like IndieBound.org and BookShop.org that have started gaining traction; they help local bookstores compete with Amazon in selling books online.
Are Bookstores Essential?
The people of France currently asking the question of whether or not bookstores are essential businesses and should stay open during lockdown. France is entering its second national lockdown to try and stop the spread of coronavirus. Its people are pleading the government to let bookshops stay open, deeming that reading is “essential”. During the first lockdown, these stores were forced to closed, financially hurting them. Now, many of them are saying that they are now ready to allow readers in while following safe practices. If the government would allow it, allowing these stores to stay open would help them tremendously in making sure they don’t have to close because of this pandemic.
Finding New Outlets to Stay Afloat
Some bookstores are getting creative in how they are asking people to support them. Powell’s Books, a bookstore chain in Portland, has announced that they are releasing their own fragrance. After surveying customers, the chain found that many of them missed the smell of the store. So, Powell’s decided to create a limited release fragrance that supposedly captures the scent of the store. It even comes in a cool little book box!
Goodreads Early Choice Awards
Goodreads.com released their nominations for their yearly choice awards this week. The site is allowing users to vote for the best books of the year across all sorts of genres, with voting taking place in 3 rounds between now and the end of November. Winners will be announced December 8th. Many people have been wondering why they decided to hold these votes so early, ourselves included. Some of the books that have been nominated haven’t even released yet, leaving people feeling that these awards are being unfair to those authors.
Not Quite Bookish News
In adaptation news this week we have Amazon developing the fantasy drama Havenfall, based on the book by Sara Holland. We also got notice from Netflix and Ubisoft that they are adapting the Assassin’s Creed video game franchise into a live action TV series. Ubisoft’s video game series has gotten novels based on it, and even a live action movie (although we try not to talk about that). Both of these adaptations sound like they’re going to be great, and I can’t wait for them!
Dress for your Library
A kickstarter recently ended for a new line of apparel inspired by local libraries. Public Library Apparel aims to create designs that represent the various services public libraries offer. The designs are based on various retro book covers, and the current collection is inspired by George Orwell’s 1984. The owner has also pledged to donate 20% of the profits every month to public libraries in the UK, which is awesome!
That’s all the news we have for this week! Tell us what you thought of this week’s bookish news. Let us know if you think there’s something we should add to next week’s post either here or message us on Twitter! We hope you stay safe and have a great Halloween!