Noëlle Santos just opened the only independent bookstore in the Bronx, called The Lit. Bar, and it's already making waves.
Barnes & Noble is launching a new YA Book Club just in time for the summer to begin!
Meetings will be held in-store the second Thursday of each month at nationwide locations. Expect hot deals, 50% off discounts on select YA releases, exciting giveaways, and exclusive bonus content! (Plus, there will be $2 teas at B&N cafés). These meetings will be open to all YA fans… and yes, that’s a description of the genre, NOT the required age range of the attendees.
Image Via Barnes & Noble
The first meeting will take place on June 13th at 7pm across locations nationwide. Christine Riccio’s Again, but Better will be number one—that’s both chronologically first AND number one on the bestseller list. Already at #1 in Teen & Young Adult Romantic Comedy on Amazon, Riccio’s novel is one of those rare, hotly-anticipated debuts. Widely considered to be the ‘original BookTuber,’ Riccio has extensively documented her writing process to her 406k engaged followers. The special book club edition will be available to attendees, which includes Q & A with the author and an exclusive deleted scene.
The following is a sneak peak from Barnes & Noble to build our hype for this exciting community event:
June: Again, but Better by Christine Riccio, Thursday, June 13, at 7 PM. Again, But Better is a story about second chances, discovering yourself, and being brave enough to try again.
July: We Hunt the Flame by Hafsah Faizal, Thursday, July 11, at 7 PM. Set in a richly detailed world inspired by ancient Arabia, We Hunt the Flame is a gripping debut of discovery, conquering fear, and taking identity into your own hands.
August: Wilder Girls by Rory Power, Thursday, August 8, at 7 PM. Wilder Girls is a debut novel about three best friends living in quarantine at their island boarding school, and the lengths they go to uncover the truth of their confinement.
Images Via Amazon; Made With Photocollage
Sign up to attend the first meeting of B&N’s Book Club, and check out the hashtag #BNYABookClub for more info.
Barnes & Nobles’ effort to make its retail locations community spaces comes in the midst of corporate financial struggles. Alarmists are quick to warn readers of the impending ‘death of print media,’ a sentiment that’s significantly more dramatic than it is accurate. What we’re really looking at is the death of chain bookstores, a fate which could await even retail giant B&N. With plans to close 167 stores by 2022, there will be swaths of the country left without its familiar storefront. And, no, we’re not just talking the boondocks—Washington D.C. lost its B&N back in 2015 despite its residents spending more money on reading than anywhere else in the United States.
Fortunately, this decline doesn’t signify the death of the bookstore in general. Indie bookstores are actually on the rise: over the past eight years, the number of indie bookstores has increased by 25%
The success of these bookstores likely has to do with their interconnectedness with the neighborhoods in which they reside. Perhaps Barnes & Noble’s YA Book Club will bring this sense of community to its retail locations!
Featured Image Via BookRiot.
This Week’s Winner: Asylum Books & Games, Aberdeen, Scotland
Image via Greg Kitchin
Our readers have been sending us their favorite independent bookstores and telling us what ‘indie’ means to them. (And don’t forget that you can, too!) This week, we’re focusing on Asylum Books & Games in Aberdeen, Scotland. This bookstore was suggested by one of its beloved customers, Greg Kitchin.
Asylum specializes in selling comic books from both established and independent brands, as well as graphic novels, games, and apparel. The local community considers the store a social hub for fans and aspiring creators, and it’s dedicated to further expanding the local comic book community.
Image via Mike McLEAN
Kitchin appreciates all that Asylum does for Aberdeen’s comics admiring residents, explaining:
“It’s the only comic shop for miles that does signings so we get a chance to meet comic writers and creators, and had helped foster new talent for nearly twenty years.”
Image via Granite City Comic Culture
Kitchin also returns for ongoing fan camaraderie with Asylum’s owner, Mike McLean.
“Mike knows his own mind and what he likes, which is refreshing from other places that don’t even bother to read material. He engages with his customers, and helps them not only with finding something new to read, but puts them in touch with other people who can help.”
Image via Mike McLEAN
McLean knows that customers appreciate the personal attention and dedication that Asylum provides the comic book community. Though the store itself isn’t large, McLean tailors its inventory to the community’s requests and is so precise that he can deduce which books people are looking for based on even the most minute detail (take that, Batman).
“I’ve been able to source a comic (after some conversation) from the customer’s review, ‘it’s green’ — We sign for so many parcels for locals that they joke we’re part post office.”
Image via Mike McLEAN
A favorite comic of McLean’s is Barry Ween: Boy Genius. His personal recommendation also happens to be his best selling book, outselling even Watchmen and The Dark Knight Returns many times over because of its universal appeal.
In the future, McLean hopes to expand the size of the venue and include a broader range of products.
“Check the website; we ship worldwide, and don’t be afraid to ask for the unlikely.”
Featured Image via Mike McLean
Independent bookstores are the lifeblood of any community. Recently, the passionate book-lovers of New York’s Upper West Side crowdfunded over $50,000 to save beloved local independent bookstore Westsider Books from an untimely closure. People love their bookstores, and that love transcends what’s on the shelves. Independent bookstores support local authors, diverse books, and the neighborhoods that love them so.
These literary hotspots are more than safe (and beautiful!) spaces. They represent a community of people who are truly passionate about books and reading—a community that Bookstr is proud to support.
We need local bookstores now more than ever, and, here at Bookstr, we’re passionate about raising awareness of the importance of these places, these sacred spaces that at once cozy and enormous enough to contain a thousand worlds.
We want to know about your favorite bookstore, the one that always makes you feel like you’ve come home. Is it that cozy nook down the block with personally curated shelves? Is it the one that brought you some peace when you were at your most stressed-out? What about the bookstore you stumbled into that rainy Wednesday and never really left? We want to know.
Click here to tell us all about what makes your favorite store so special, and it could be featured on Bookstr, made available to our international audience of 1.5 million fans! Include photos, gushing testimonials, memories of a sunlit afternoon—anything to show how much you care. Earn your beloved book spot free publicity, and earn yourself a huge THANK YOU across all our social media channels in the form of fun articles, interviews, and more!
(And hey, if those bookstores don’t give you a free book or two after the enthusiastic promotion, we can’t be held responsible.)