Posted in personal
July 20, 2011

Goodbye Borders.

It’s always sad when another bookstore chain closes. I remember watching Crown Books and Waldenbooks disappear, as well as smaller independent bookstores vanish in place of Borders and Barnes & Noble. Of the two, Borders always felt a bit more like a local store- with gift wrapping done by local charity groups, and plenty of events for kids and so on. Not to mention that I loved their online search. It meant that I could easily find the book I was looking for, and would even tell me what part of the store it was in! Not to mention how easy it was to special order books. Often with B&N, it was a hassle, but Borders always made it easy.

But it was easy to see where things went wrong. As Amazon became more and more popular, Barnes & Noble put more money into their website. Borders went to Amazon and had them operate their online store. Then Amazon later decided to focus on the e-reader market, developing the Kindle. Barnes & Noble immediately started to develop their own, and it took ages for Borders to jump on the e-reader bandwagon. By the time they did, B&N and Amazon were overtaking their market share… and it was a losing battle.

So goodbye Borders. I spent lots of time in your Santa Barbara store while I waited for my sister or my mom. I practically lived at your Orange store, doing the bulk of my Christmas shopping there because you carried music, movies, books and stationary type things.

That was a picture from 3 years ago, when the Oldest Kidlet was a little thing, and his brother was a newborn. We were doing some holiday shopping there (DVDs for some, a notebook for my sister and a sports book for my father in law) and the boys fell asleep. Not long after that, it was impossible to leave Borders without buying a new book for the kidlets. Or books, the Oldest Kidlet managed to get a few book sets out of it.

I just hope that the brick and mortar bookstore won’t be a thing of the past. On our vacation, TheBoy and I stopped at a Barnes & Noble to pick up a few books when he finished the book he’d brought to Vegas. It was nice to be able to browse and immediately have books in my hands instead of waiting for something to ship… as great as e-readers are (I love my Kindle app on my phone, and have been debating getting one), there is something magical about a brand new book spine and the smell of paper.

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