Is This the Best Way to Buy a Book?

I’ve known about bookshop.org since its launch, though I hardly gave it any thought. It’s an online bookstore that aims to help and preserve independent bookstores in the US.

I’ve written over and over about how much I love Half Price Books. It’s really the only bookstore I regularly shop at. HPB may be a chain, but it’s still family owned. They fall somewhere in the middle of Barnes and Noble on the top of the stack and the local mom and pop bookstore with a single location.

But bookshop.org tries to level the playing field. The site gives away most of its profits to local bookstores and has an affiliate program that pays out 10% commission and matches that with 10% to local bookstores.

When checking their website there’s a lot to like about it. But there’s one flaw. The site is its own bookstore. Though you can find affiliated stores on the site, when buying books you’re buying from the site. What I think would make the site ideal is if the books listed are actually bought from those local affiliate bookstores. The site would act as a marketplace. I’m not sure if this is possible, but it’s a thought. Do you have a favorite bookstore you prefer over others?

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