The Letters of Sylvia Beach
by Sylvia Beach
$29.95 List Price
The history of independent bookstores is littered with fallen monuments. Manhattan's Eighth Street Bookshop counted the Beats and Auden as customers, but it was long gone when I moved to New York in 1992. In the past several years, we've lost the wonderful Dutton's in Los Angeles; the Trover Shop, once an institution on Capitol Hill; and Cody's in Berkeley (since when aren't even that city's good leftist citizens able to keep an independent bookstore open?). There is something inherently ephemeral about the trade, and the obstacles—indifferent publics, high rents, minuscule profit margins—are too many to list. It's not just Amazon or the e-reader; there was always something putting the independents out of business, and whatever our sentiments, the world does not owe bookstores a living.
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