Saturday, April 2, 2016

Parnassus Bookstore's "Bright Blue Bookmobile"

What a wonderful idea! Parnassus Books, beloved novelist Ann Patchett’s and Karen Hayes’ co-owned Nashville bookstore (a terrific story in itself) has set up and sent out into the world a “bright blue bookmobile” that will “roam about town, stopping at food truck rallies, farmers’ markets and outside restaurants” (according to Alexandra Alter, New York Times, 3/24/16). Some public library systems have bookmobiles, a great thing for people who cannot easily get to libraries, or who just love the idea of these libraries-on-wheels, but bookstore bookmobiles are a rarity. Besides making books more accessible and increasing sales, the roving library is good advertising for the bookstore. This one carries about 1,000 books, and includes padded blue benches where customers can sit and browse. The New York Times article about Parnassus’ bookmobile also brings us the excellent news that “independent [book]stores are thriving again, after years of decline." This is one more reminder that there is nothing like an independent bookstore. Let’s all keep supporting the ones in our areas, and exploring others when we travel as well.
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