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Does anyone go to bookshops any more?

(41 Posts)
Sofarris Fri 19-Dec-14 16:29:29

Hi Everyone,

I went into our local bookshop the other day for some final Christmas shopping and the place was like a ghost town. Last year it was rammed. Am I the only one who still uses bookshops?
I know lots of people are using Amazon and Ebay but does anyone feel like I do and find that it's better to go into a book shop?

What are your thoughts ladies?
x fsmile

Lurknomoreladies Fri 19-Dec-14 16:37:16

Love going to bookshops, especially independent ones. Sometimes hampered because most of them in my nearest towns are closed on Sundays, which is often when I get to shop. Totally respect that, by the way, just means they don't always get my custom as much as I'd like.

carlajean Fri 19-Dec-14 16:39:44

I've boycotted Amazon (fat lot of difference that'll make) so yes, I do go to bookshops, and yes, they are much quieter. I expect bookshops, apart from a few, to disappear in my lifetime and it makes me feel very sad.

MiddleAgeMiddleEngland Fri 19-Dec-14 16:42:15

I go all the time. We have a lovely one in our town with fantastic staff who will go out of their way to find what you want. I feel it's so important to support them, and am fortunate that I can afford to buy from them, not be looking for bargains on Amazon. DH was in there today (after casually asking me if there were any books I'd like for Christmas smile) and said it was very busy. They can usually get books the day after you order them so quicker than Amazon anyway most of the time.

How do you browse and sample books if you can't actually handle them? Some of my best discoveries and favourite titles/authors have come from browsing in a real bookshop.

When we are away, one of the things we do is seek out the local bookshops and spend an hour or so in there. Imagine a high street or town without a bookshop sad

Becca19962014 Fri 19-Dec-14 16:44:08

I too love book shops! It is sad to see them gradually closing down, though my last couple of visits to book shops they were busy I think that's more to do with it being the week before Christmas and major delivery problems where I live.

DuchessofMalfi Fri 19-Dec-14 16:46:37

We lost our local bookshop earlier this year. They closed down, saying that they just couldn't afford their premises any longer, and didn't have enough customers using it. It seems I was probably one of very few people who ever went in there, and I bought regularly in there, especially for the DC as they had a brilliant children's section sad

TwoLittleTerrors Fri 19-Dec-14 16:47:40

I have been buying all my books online since I got my ipad last christmas. Can't think of anything worse than reading a physical book. Sorry.

TwoLittleTerrors Fri 19-Dec-14 16:49:02

MiddleAgeMiddleEngland how do you browse and sample? You get, I think, 7 days to return a kindle book on amazon. Better than a bookshop to sample. I return about 50% of the book I buy on amazon.

TwoLittleTerrors Fri 19-Dec-14 16:49:40

Apple isn't so good with returns so I'm not as keen with them.

GlaceCherries Fri 19-Dec-14 16:50:02

We are in our local W*********s often - that's where all my DC's pocket / birthday money goes.

Aside from that place, we like the Oxfam book shop. The nearest indie bookshop is in the next town, it's always heaving whenever we've been. (We use the library a lot, can't afford to buy all that we read.)

FlappertyFlippers Fri 19-Dec-14 16:51:09

Two little terrors - how do you return books on the kindle?!

waycat Fri 19-Dec-14 17:00:29

The only bookshop near me is a major chain in the city centre. Given that I live about ten miles from the city centre, absolutely hate it and avoid it all costs, then I don't need to tell you that I never visit said major book chain.

I do buy books occasionally from the supermarket, but the range is limited.

I have no independents near me unfortunately - wish I do as I think they're wonderful places.

TwoLittleTerrors Fri 19-Dec-14 17:09:44

flapperty go to the amazon webpage, on the horizontal navigation bar, there is a item called 'hello terror, your account'. Go to manage your content and devices. You should now see the books you've purchased. If you haven't bought the book for long, one of the actions available is 'return for refund'.

You can also set up a 'household' account to share content with you DH/DP or anyone you like really!

FlappertyFlippers Fri 19-Dec-14 17:18:41

Terrors - thank you!!! Have just returned a book. Amazing! I love my kindle even more now

kalidasa Fri 19-Dec-14 17:23:07

I think bookshops will survive, though probably in smaller numbers. There are certain kinds of books that you are always likely to want to look at in person - children's books, things like cookbooks, many types of 'coffee table' or art books. My guess is that the bookshops that survive will incline more towards this 'books as attractive objects' part of the market.

I also wonder whether eventually we'll see a division again between buying content and buying binding (as was the case in e.g. the 17th century, where you often bought your books unbound and then took them to a binder). E.g. where you could buy the digital content of a popular book or one particularly important to you and pay separately to have it bound in a unique/personalised way. I can imagine you might go to a shop to choose the binding/covers etc in that scenario a bit like you do e.g. upholstery fabric.

Wellthatsit Fri 19-Dec-14 17:41:49

I went into Waterstones on Princes Street in Edinburgh - the main shopping street - the other day. The queue was so long that I assumed there was a book signing going on. From the tills to the back of the shop, snaking back to and then out of the door and along the street. I was shocked, as I had been planning to have a nice leisurely browse for present ideas, but it would have been impossible.

arlagirl Fri 19-Dec-14 17:44:43

Much as I love independent bookshops, I buy about 6-10 books a month on my kindle....It would cost me so much more to buy a hardback...I like reading new releases.
Also I couldn't store that volume of books.

ChlorinePerfume Fri 19-Dec-14 21:34:05

No indie bookshops left where we are only waterstones and whs. never tought I would say it but prefer reading on kindle. I like to download samples before buying.

GristletoeAndWhine Fri 19-Dec-14 21:41:24

I like going into book shops because if you are browsing in a real shop, you tend to see different things that wouldn't necessarily appear on your amazon recommendations, or your kindle editor's picks. However, if you know what you want, it is so much cheaper and easier to buy online. I don't know how the bookshops will survive. Not having them leaves us with less choice about what to buy, because we are dictated to by a much narrower set of criteria. It's a difficult problem, and doesn't just apply to books, also toys and other goods.

hackmum Fri 19-Dec-14 21:43:47

It's awful. I love going into bookshops, but our local one closed down. The reason it closed down is people like me who have Kindles and buy everything from Amazon. I would hate to see bookshops disappear, yet I am actively complicit in their demise.

debbriana Fri 19-Dec-14 21:52:36

I wanted a hard copy of Chris Hardfield book but the best discount of seventy percent was on amazon. I don't have money to throw around so I ordered it. I googled all the other books stores but they we all full price at £20. I know my dp will love it. I don't think he will care where it came from.

I would love to boycott amazon but I have already invested too much. My kindle is full of paid books.

For my mil I always have to get her hard copies too. I remember returning four books back to waterstones because they were three times cheaper from tesco. For me it's all about saving money.

The best place to get books is a charity shop. £1.

Independent book stores can't compete.

For interesting books I used to go to a small I dependent book store in North London. I love it. But it was very expensive. I remember buying a collectors book from there. Amazing.

iseenodust Mon 22-Dec-14 13:05:45

I like Waterstones but it's 10 miles away & never the cheapest option. We have an independent bookstore in our nearest town and I buy a lot of books/books as presents in there but they don't usually have newly published straight away, in which case I revert to Amazon.

Trapper Mon 22-Dec-14 13:22:39

I couldn't get the pushchair into Waterstones in Greenwich yesterday. It was packed.

cheifbrody Sun 28-Dec-14 09:04:33

I go into bookshops and write down the books that look interesting as does my son.

We then come home and buy on Amazon at a fraction of the price. Sometimes as cheap as a couple of pound a book including delivery.

Why would I pay more?

DuchessofMalfi Sun 28-Dec-14 09:56:20

And that describes the death of the bookshop in a nutshell. We all do it, because we don't like to pay more for a book than we need to, and you can't beat the convenience of Amazon's online store.

And yet, I feel guilty every time I do it because I'm contributing to the death of the high street bookshop. And not just the bookshop, but the death of the high street (but that's a whole other gripe). We lost our local bookshop, which I did try to support as much as I could afford to do so, and the nearest one in the next town is just W H Smith (small branch, small selection of books).

The nearest branch of Waterstones is at least 25 miles away, so major excursion to that. Out of convenience, it is Amazon where we live (very rural).

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