Bookstore: The Life and Times of Jeannette Watson and Books and Co. by Lynne Tillman

David Henry
Student, BA in Liberal Studies

I chose Lynne Tillman’s Bookstore: The Life and Times of Jeannette Watson and Books and Co., because it represents a special time in my life when I frequented the many independent and used bookstores in Los Angeles. The stores were more than just “stores”, they were safe havens where I could get lost amongst the books, talk to other people about books and get recommendations, and just enjoy the smells of old books and the tactile pleasure of holding and leafing through them. Tilman’s account of one New York bookseller takes the 21st century reader into a time when publishing, books, bookstores,and the printed word still mattered and had real value in our society.

Paul Auster comments on the fate of bookstores in the forward, “Assuming that books are important–and I do assume that–then these stores are important, something fundamental to the spiritual health of the country.”

By the way I bought this book in a used bookstore on Fairfax, many years ago, that store has been closed for many years now.

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“Twilight of the Books: What Will Life Be Like if People Stop Reading?”  Caleb Crain for The New Yorker

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