Reflection: My Romance With Bookstores and Great Books
Over the weekend, we visited three different brick and mortar bookstores. I have
always loved bookstores and libraries. Holding the books in your hands, reading
snippets, admiring the author’s creativity, and being inspired to write.
After Cathey and I were first married in the early 1970’s , we had a VW Beetle,
which she drove to her work everyday, and a bike I rode wherever I needed to go.
This included many trips to a lovely independent bookstore in the village near where
we lived. I spent a lot of time there reading and buying the books of Jack Kerouack,
Alan Watts, Ram Dass, Carlos Casteneda, Kurt Vonnegut, Richard Brautigan, and
This weekend we visited: an Amazon storefront, a Barnes and Noble, and our
independent bookstore, Parrnassus, co-owned by the novelist, Ann Pachett, who
lives in Nashville.
At Parnassus, I purchased the newly published book, The Every, by Dave Eggers,
which is only being sold through independent booksellers at this time by the author’s
design. Interestingly, the book is available as a hardback with over 30 different cover
designs (see the book I bought below). Also, Eggers has three different subtitles as
follows: ‘At Last A sense of Order,’ or ‘The Final Days of Free Will,’ or ‘Limitless
Choice is Killing the World.’
His novel focuses on the challenges and dangers facing our culture today due to the
ever increasing growth and power of tech companies and giant e-commerce sites.
The back cover says, “The Every will keep the reader in breathless suspense about
the fate of capitalism, freedom, and the human animal.”
If you love bookstores and good writing by contemporary authors who address the
critical social and cultural challenges of our times creatively and prophetically, visit
your local independent bookstore, hold it in your hands, marvel at it, pick your cover,and buy this book by Dave Eggers. And happy reading!