Monday, May 7, 2012

WHERE ARE ALL THE BOOKSTORES?

  When I was younger I remember being able to go to the mall, 2 bus rides later I was at my local bookstore which was Walden's. But like I said that's when I was younger. That Walden's is gone now and was never replaced. A bookstore is where your suppose to be able to go to checkout the latest books, magazines, manga, and other sort of things. But what happens when the only bookstore you know closes down?

  It's been about ten years since that Walden's closed down and nothing has replaced it since. Unfortunately the same thing happened to its parent company Borders last year, after it declared bankruptcy. This is where my question comes up, where are all the bookstores? Living in Brooklyn you would think that their would be a vast amount of bookstores since this is where everyone is supposedly moving too since the city it self is vastly expensive. If you were to look around my part of Brooklyn you would find not one bookstore. Sure you will have Target which sells some books and you can pop into your local Walgreens, Rite Aid, or CVS and pick up your romance novels, but where are the actual bookstores.

  Seemingly they are nowhere to be found. You would have to travel away from you local neighborhood to downtown Brooklyn or Manhattan to go to the big chain store Barnes & Nobles. If one was looking for a particular book you have no choice but to go here or order it online. Even though I am a fan of the ebook and even an author of two not every can stand staring at a computer all day. Barnes & Nobles seems to be the only book store in Brooklyn sometimes. On many of my visits their you will find it loaded with a lot of people. Being located in Downtown Brooklyn it is around the more well off Brooklynites, so it is not just a bookstore, but a common area where bother well off and not so well off people can mix over their common urge to read.

  Wanting to answer my own question I took to Google and asked my question of how many bookstores where in Brooklyn? So with the help of Yelp.com, I got a number of 35 bookstores said to be in Brooklyn. So with those numbers you would think that they would all be easy to get to, but no you would  be wrong. All of these bookstores that were listed on Yelp all had the same thing in common, they were located in what I will call the better parts of Brooklyn. 20 out of the 35 bookstores were located in Williamsburg, Borough Park, Cobble Hill...etc. So what about us in parts way out? Why is it that we have to travel so far to get our literary entertainment? Well I don't have an answer for you there, but maybe in those neighborhoods there is less of a chance that the lonely bookstore will get robbed. Maybe there is more business because people in those neighborhoods read more.

  Those thoughts are all maybes. I can't say that people in particular neighborhoods read more than others, although I'm sure if you did some research we would find evidence to prove that, but this isn't about that. I want to know why there aren't more bookstores in neighborhoods like my own. The particular part of Brooklyn I am from isn't Willamsburg, but it's not the ghetto either. It's filled will middle class hard workers and yes it also has its problem with hooligans, but nonetheless its mainly middle class. So why can't my middle class neighborhood has a posh bookstore like Barnes & Nobles or any bookstore as a matter a fact?

  The truth is that people don't get what they don't ask for. Ten years ago when Walden's closed down and the only convenient bookstore in the neighborhood was gone, no one said a thing. I'm going to give my excuse of that I was a child when this happened, and I'm sure some of my fellow bookies out there made a quiet noise about it, but not enough to save it, nor get us a new one. One would think that in this neighborhood which I will reveal to be Canarsie, a bookstore would want to set up shop. Their is virtually no competition, unless you count Target, and like I said Target isn't a bookstore. This neighborhood is also safe and if established on Rockaway Parkway, the amount of foot traffic up there alone will generate a good amount of business.

  Hopefully someone out there is listening to me and see the wisdom in my words and say you know what she's right. Canarsie and a lot of other parts of Brooklyn have no bookstores and have to travel for an hour or more to get to one. Even with all the traveling you also have to hope that the bookstore actually have your book or has the means to order it for you and receive if in a timely manner. So hope the next time I ask where are all the bookstores, I can give you a good answer and a lengthy list of place you can pulp yourself down on the floor and catch a glimpse of your favorite book before be told to buy it.