An Industry Surviving

It has long been thought that E-books would be the future of reading and that eventually they would put bookstores, big and small, out of business.

Barnes & Noble Booksellers in Reno, NV (Above) and Sundance Books in Music in Downtown Reno, NV (Below).

Now it’s looking like commercial and independent bookstores, such as Sundance Books and Music, don’t have much to fear from E-books anymore.

In 2011, the theory that electronic reading devices would put bookstores out of business (much like streaming services have done to video stores) seemed to be confirmed when Borders closed its doors.

Despite this gloomy prediction, published books have been on the rise and independent bookstores are even seeing a revival.

According to The New York Times, the sale of E-books has slowed down in recent years. Book buyers appear to prefer reading printed books, and many are switching between printed and electronic versions of their favorite stories. An increase in the cost of E-books can also provide a possible explanation for this trend in electronic sales.

“I mostly like books and paper because I love the smell of books and it’s nice to have something tangible in your hands to hold rather than just your tablet.” — Patricia Badger, avid reader.
Independent bookstores have a culture all their own. At Sundance Music and Books, a large stuffed dragon greets customers as they walk to the second floor.

Independent bookstores, such as Sundance, have seen a resurgence in recent years despite the predicted E-book takeover.

Local bookstores often have a different atmosphere for customers and employees than commercial outlets such as Barnes & Noble and Amazon.com do. Employees like Kate McDowell enjoy working at locally owned businesses that provide these unique experiences for shoppers.

“I love it, it’s great working for a local small business… plus I really like music and arts so it’s fun.” Kate McDowell said while working at the checkout counter in Sundance Books and Music

E-books have caused several issues for readers as well, such as books coming in different file formats, the lack of a universal bookshelf, and stories being easily lost if a device is corrupted.

As Dorothy Mills put it while out shopping for new books “unless you have a fire or water problem [books are] pretty much there for good.”

“If your tablet breaks then that’s the end of the book, but your [printed] book is always going to be with you.” — Patricia Badger

Technological issues with E-books and the appeal of going to an independent bookstore can assure readers that what happened with television and movies when streaming services arrived will not take the same effect on the print industry anytime in the near future.

“ It might be like what Redbox did to Blockbuster where they kind of sold them out. I hope not, I hope we have at least one bookstore .”
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