Amazon’s previously-announced 5,800-square-foot bookstore at Legacy Place in Dedham, MA will open on Tuesday, after holding a preview on Saturday. As previously announced, this is Amazon’s first bookstore to open on the East Coast (and fourth to open so far), with at least three more “coming soon” in Lynnfield, MA; Paramus, NJ; and Manhattan’s Columbus Circle.
Waterstones is receiving criticism in British media for small-town bookstores they have opened over the past 3 years, charged with “posing as independent bookshops to avoid the backlash against the homogenization of Britain’s high streets,” the Guardian writes. The stores, which are in Rye, Southwold and Harpenden, notify customers of their corporate affiliation with only a handwritten note in the window. Critics argue that the local communities would have rejected the arrival of another chain store. But none of these stores is new: The Southwold Bookshop opened almost 3 years ago; the Rye store followed in mid-2015 and the Harpenden store opened in April 2016. Some independent booksellers did speak out when the Southwold store opened.
In addressing the controversy on BBC Radio, Waterstones’ managing director James Daunt essentially conceded the argument: “We are coming into quite sensitive high streets with predominantly independent retailers on them and we wish to behave as they do.” The subterfuge is ok, because people like the stores: “The vast majority [of people] have welcomed them greatly. They are very small shops in towns that had independents and very much wish they still had independents but don’t.” He added later, “Part of the reason we did it is to convince our own booksellers that they have the autonomy that they do have.”
The Lit Bar, the bookstore and wine bar Noelle Santos plans to open in the Bronx has hit its crowd funding goal. With three weeks left in the Indiegogo campaign, the project has already raised more than $100,000.
The Bookstore, the only bookseller in Elko, Nevada, has closed, citing its inability to compete with Amazon and the Internet as the reason.