Saturday, October 06, 2007

L.A. Book Buyers Needed!

Sad news this weekend about another indie bookstore in danger of going under. This one is Eso Won, an African American bookstore that I happen to know is a really cool store. I signed there a few years ago, and am supposed to go back next spring...but it's not looking good. From the L.A. Times:

After 20 years of hawking books -- some by popular authors; others, scholarly works, with rare and exotic titles -- L.A.'s leading independent bookstore specializing in writings by African Americans is facing bankruptcy.

Indeed, Eso Won may be closing its doors by the end of the year.

"We are suffering from what other independent bookstores have found -- that it's tough to compete against the Internet and the big chains," said James Fugate, a co-owner of the Leimert Park store.

People are rallying around the store, leading campaigns to buy books. However, the story goes on to say:

Encouraged by calls to help their struggling establishment, Fugate and Thomas Hamilton, the store's other co-owner, welcome the help, but also see the likelihood of closing as something they may not be able to avoid. "If people decide they don't want us, then it's time for us to leave," Hamilton said.

Let's hope that's not the case.


Sustenance Scout said...

Sad story, Carleen, but like you said it sounds like there's still some hope. Brings to mind The Hue-Man Experience bookstore here in Denver. K.

Sherry said...

I'm always saddened to hear that the "little guy" is being squeezed out by the "big guy". Independent book stores are wonderful...hopefully this one can be saved.

Ello said...

I hate hearing about this! We need to have a wholesale movement to save the independents! We need federal subsidies to keep them around! We need big name authors to back them! Something!

Gosh - this makes me upset.

Carleen Brice said...

Eso Won is a Booksense store with a wide variety of books that can be ordered over the internet. I just ordered Junot Diaz's novel on their site.

Sustenance Scout said...

Thanks for the tip, Carleen. I've been a fan of Junot Diaz since reading his early short stories a while back. I'll be interested to hear how you like his novel. K.

enhager said...

On Monday, October 15 at 7 PM Eso-Won is hosting WALTER MOSLEY, creator of the phenomenon known as Easy Rawlins.
Denzel Washington played Easy in the movie Devil in a Blue Dress. Let's not give up. We don't need the government - we need to support our locals.