Forbes interviews the Harvard Book Store's new owner, Jeff Mayersohn.
I respected his mission, even if I didn’t quite believe in its future. So, Jeff shocked me a couple of weeks ago, when he told me with a certain amount of pride and pleasure that he has been seeing double digit sales growth month by month over the last year.
Brookline Booksmith buys what's left of the Globe Corner Bookstore, expands travel section in BrooklineBy adamg - 4/27/12 - 3:07 pm
Brookline Booksmith announced today it's bought out the Globe Corner Bookstore - which had become an online-only venture - and is using its assets to open a "Globe Corner Travel Annex" at its Coolidge Corner store.
The move means impending travelers can now buy any of 2,000 different maps of regions around the world. globecorner.com remains a separate Web site, at least until Booksmith can integrate it into its own Web site.
J. Smith reports Curious George is festooned with "Now Open" banners.
Wicked Local Cambridge reports a Roslindale couple is working to re-open the shuttered kids' bookstore in the heart of the square. Reopening is sometime this spring.
Jeff Mayersohn, owner of the iconic Harvard Square shop, sent e-mail to fans:
As Rachel noted in a recent newsletter, we just completed our best holiday season in quite some time. The volume of business happily surprised us after years of challenge. Despite this unanticipated demand, our amazing staff rose to the occasion, the publishers supplied us with the books we needed, and our customers showered us with much appreciated holiday cheer. We are very thankful as we head into 2012. ... It is clear that the rumors of the demise of independent bookstores have been greatly exaggerated. Entrepreneurs continue to enter the industry, reimagining how the printed word is distributed to passionate readers. It has been an exciting year, but we promise you that the coming year will be even more exciting.
Via Danielle Dreilinger.
No, not that one. Village Books, 751 South St. in Roslindale, is having its final, down-to-bare-walls sale this weekend - all remaining books 30-50% off and even the furniture and decorations are up for sale.
Chain announces plans to liquidate; means 11,000 employees, including those in Downtown Crossing, will soon be out of jobs:
Subject to the Court's approval, under the proposal, liquidation is expected to commence for some stores and facilities as soon as Friday, July 22, with a phased rollout of the program which is expected to conclude by the end of September.
The entire chain is now on the brink of liquidation after the collapse of a financing effort, the Wall Street Journal reports.
It looks like Borders has cancelled its plan to close Downtown Crossing and 50 other stores, in preparation for selling the entire chain to the highest bidder next month. The salesperson who answered the phone yesterday at Downtown Crossing says that liquidation won't start on July 1 as previously announced.
Maybe we'll be lucky and the buyer will keep it open. Meanwhile, if you have a Borders gift card or any loyalty points, you should spend them immediately.
The Globe reports the impending demise of Village Books.
Maureen Rogers is left wondering where she'll go for new books now:
When I saw the news the other day, I immediately dropped in and spent nearly a hundred bucks on books, boo-hooing all the way.
After seeing the rumor posted on Twitter and LiveJournal, I just now phoned the store to confirm. Liquidators are taking over the store on July 1. The store was unable to renegotiate its lease with the landlord under Chapter 11 bankruptcy.
This will leave no new-book stores at all in Downtown Boston. Barnes & Noble closed a block away in 2006.
(x-posted to b0st0n LiveJournal)
Publishers Weekly posts the impending obit for the Harvard Square store, which goes out of business at the end of this month, several years after it left the Downtown Crossing location that gave it its name. The owner says he couldn't find anybody to buy the place; will continue to operate globecorner.com.
Via Chris Klein.
Borders Books has added Braintree to the list of stores it is closing due to Chapter 11 bankruptcy. Borders previously announced that it would close stores on Boylston Street (Back Bay), Burlington, Peabody, and Chestnut Hill.
At least for now, Borders stores in Downtown Crossing (Washington St), CambridgeSide Galleria, Dedham, Kingston, Mansfield, Marlboro, and Methuen are to stay open as usual.
Borders Books, which filed for bankruptcy protection this morning, will close its Back Bay and Wayside Commons (Burlington) stores, according to this list on the Wall Street Journal website. (Click on the 'Zip Code' header to put all the Massachusetts stores at the top.)
The Downtown Boston and Cambridgeside Galleria stores are safe -- for now. But if you have a Borders gift card sitting around, today would be a good time to spend it, before the stores' inventory begins to deplete.
Window cat at Commonwealth Books, downtown.
In a letter to customers, Marshall Smith said he's selling off the Wellesley Booksmith as part of his move toward retirement. He said he'll continue to own the Brookline Booksmith store in Coolidge Corner.
Smith said he is looking for a buyer who would continue and even strengthen the store's role as a community center as he begins to spend more time on the Cape:
I have been a bookseller for almost fifty years. What an extraordinary industry to devote your business life to. Difficult sometimes - yes. Rewarding most times - absolutely. I have taken great pride and pleasure in presenting the world of literature, of learning, of imagination to a broad audience. And there is always the excitement of being a part of that segment of society filled with people who love the printed word: Customers, authors, publishers, other booksellers. But especially the staff in the stores. There have been thousands of them over the years. Committed, involved, intelligent, quirky, always stimulating. It's a joy to be able to walk into the stores at any time and have a fun, challenging talk with anyone on the floor. There are hundreds of stories to write when I can spend more time on the dunes in Truro.
Without any advance warning, the Harvard University Press Display Room bookstore in Holyoke Center closed on June 18. It had been in business for 61 years. I found out it was gone only when I walked by it this week.
...at least when we're not obsessing over tabloid murder dramas:
A university president has maintained on ongoing research project, attempting to rank America's Most Literate Cities:
This study attempts to capture one critical index of our nation’s social health—the literacy of its major cities (population of 250,000 and above). This study focuses on six key indicators of literacy: newspaper circulation, number of bookstores, library resources, periodical publishing resources, educational attainment, and Internet resources.
Boston currently ranks 8th. Some might quarrel that it's not higher, and the absence of cities such as NYC lead one to question the statistical measures used, but it's fun to peruse: http://www.ccsu.edu/amlc08/ [link corrected]
A Globe gallery feature on the best used and specialty bookstores:
My vote for best used bookstore goes to the Brattle Book Shop on West Street. The outdoor carts have great $1-$3-$5 bargains, and with an excellent selection inside. I have taken out-of-town visitors there and they have raved about it too.
Although Boston & Cambridge have lost a number of their bookstores over the years, this remains a great place for book lovers.