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17 Jan

From Tiny Classified Ad to Community and Cultural Center in Fort Worth

In 1992, Sonia Williams-Babers entered the world of bookselling with "the smallest ad available" in the June issue of Black Enterprise magazine. The ad read "Get Hooked on Black Books -- send $1 for a catalogue." On returning home to Fort Worth, Texas, from Anaheim, California, and their first ABA Convention, Williams-Babers and her husband and business partner, Elvis Babers, found an overflowing post office box.

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17 Jan

Mr. Postman, Look and See Is There a Bookstore in Your Ad for Me?

Two major purveyors of the printed word came together recently when the United States Postal Service recruited a bookstore for one of the locations featured in its holiday advertising campaign.

The television commercial was shot at Reading on Walden in Chicago all day December 10, said bookstore owner John Presta. He told BTW, "It went very well. [The ad] is showing all the time now. It's called 'Holiday.'"

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14 Jan

San Francisco Fundraiser for Tattered Cover Draws Big Crowd

A crowd estimated at between 450 and 550 packed A Clean Well-Lighted Place for Books in San Francisco on January 11 to raise funds to help pay the legal fees of Denver's Tattered Cover Book Store, which has challenged a court order requiring it to turn over information about a customer's book purchases. The event raised $10,000 for the bookstore.

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10 Jan

Schuler Books & Music -- Michigan Bookstores Little Sister Grows Larger and Moves

After 12 years -- and two expansions -- the Okemos, Michigan, location of Schuler Books and Music has a new home. At 24,000 square feet, the new space (in the Greater Lansing area) is a good deal closer in size to the 20-year-old Grand Rapids Schuler Books and Music, which is 35,000 square feet.

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08 Jan

Author Luis J. Rodriguez Opens Community Bookstore in L.A.

"Books saved my life," said author Luis J. Rodriguez in a recent interview. The 47-year-old author is a former Los Angeles gang member whose love and talent for poetry and prose convinced a judge to give Rodriguez a crucial break 26 years ago when he placed him, not back in prison, but on the road to a writer's life.

Eventually a newspaper job took Rodriguez to Chicago. There, he started his own poetry publishing house and wrote the award-winning 1994 memoir, Always Running: La Vida Loca: Gang Days in L.A. (Touchstone Books).

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08 Jan

Independent Senator Visits Independent Bookstore in Vermont

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07 Jan

Hawley-Cooke Consolidates: Three Stores Become Two

On January 7, Hawley-Cooke announced that it was closing its Glenview Pointe store in Louisville, Kentucky. A statement signed by the store's four owners, Graham and Martha Neal Cooke, Audrey Schuetze, and William Schuetze, read in part, "It is with great sadness, but with a voice of confidence in the future of Hawley-Cooke Booksellers … [that we make this announcement]. We are proud of the Glenview Pointe store and the wonderful staff who made it a remarkable experience for all of us for over five years….

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21 Dec

New Bookstore Takes Root in Baltimore

Baltimore has a new independent bookstore serving some of the northern suburbs of Baltimore County--Cross Keys, Roland Park, and Ruxton. The Ivy Bookshop, owned by Baltimore area native, Darielle Linehan, has been open since November 28, when eager customers were waiting for her to unlock the doors.

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14 Dec

New Drama Book Shop Location Garners Raves

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14 Dec

R.J. Julias Experiment

R.J. Julia Booksellers, an independent bookstore in Madison, Connecticut, is branching out--or at least trying out a new offshoot. Owner Roxanne Coady told BTW that the store opened a "big, beautiful, mahogany book kiosk" in New Haven, Connecticut, on December 3.

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07 Dec

A Bookselling Institution Turns 25--And Becomes a Parent!

There was cause for celebration in Arkansas this September as That Bookstore in Blytheville at once reached a milestone and gained a colleague: That Bookstore has become those bookstores. The day owner Mary Gay Shipley held a party to mark That Bookstore in Blytheville's 25th anniversary, her protégé MaryAlice Hurst, new owner of That Bookstore at Mountebanq Place, opened for business in Conway, Arkansas.

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07 Dec

Tattered Cover Case Heard by Colorado Supreme Court

On Wednesday, December 5, the Colorado Supreme Court heard arguments in the Tattered Cover Book Store's appeal to protect the privacy rights of bookstore customers. Law enforcement authorities have tried to obtain the Denver bookstore's records, asserting that they would assist in a case involving the manufacture of methamphetamines.

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07 Dec

New Minnesota Bookstore Combines Books, Music, Maps, and Inuit Art


Jill Johnson, owner of Beagle Books

Beagle Books owner Jill Johnson spent most of her adult career in the medical field, so when she found the 1937 former medical clinic, she felt sure it was the right place to open a bookstore.

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30 Nov

Two Booksmiths--East and West--Celebrate

Two venerable bookstores, unrelated, but with a great deal in common, celebrated
major anniversaries this fall. The Booksmith in San Francisco and the Brookline
Booksmith in the Boston area are both still owned by the people who founded
them 25 and 40 years ago, respectively, and they both are just about the oldest
businesses in their neighborhoods.

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30 Nov

Colorado Supreme Court to Hear Tattered Cover Case

On December 5 at 8:30 a.m., the Colorado Supreme Court will hear oral arguments in the Tattered Cover Book Store's appeal to protect the privacy rights of bookstore customers.

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About ABA

The American Booksellers Association, a national not-for-profit trade organization, works with booksellers and industry partners to ensure the success and profitability of independently owned book retailers, and to assist in expanding the community of the book.

Independent bookstores act as community anchors; they serve a unique role in promoting the open exchange of ideas, enriching the cultural life of communities, and creating economically vibrant neighborhoods.

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