Book stores were a rare thing for me to visit even before the internet. A big part of it was my family did not have a car, and my not-living-with-us family didn’t visit often.
Books were mostly: Hand me downs I got as gifts, where I was grateful for anything with pages. Or, well chosen glossy marvels, eating up money from School Book Club tissue paper order forms. ( My promises of any other birthday or Christmas gifts vanishing as soon as they arrived)
Now, Amazon seems to all but made used book stores in my area as mythical as I once thought them to be. The one shop nearest us that sold brand new books died even sooner, some ten years ago.
But Amazon has not felt like an evil being to me because, well, I never had the freedom without it that I now have with it. In a few clicks I can hear about a book, search for a book, and buy that book, easy peasy. No mess, no fuss, no tissue paper form or ‘please wait 3-5 weeks for delivery’.
Well, that last part varies. For my cool $3.99 I’ve seen Amazon take anywhere from two days to three months to get a book to me. Sellers on Amazon, most of all penny sellers, do not seem required to act like the company they say they are and list a location. Even just a notice to say they are in the US somewhere.
I ordered a copy of Taming The Forest King by Claudia Edwards (a rec from a forum I belong to) on the 1st of this month, only to finally get it yesterday. The postmarks proudly proclaimed it had traveled all the way from the UK to my little slice of Nowheresville, CA, USA.
Normally this wouldn’t get to me. I love getting objects from far off places. But the fact that I don’t know where my books are actually coming from anymore hits a nerve I didn’t even know was there Silly, I guess, really.
Here’s to you Amazon. Please be careful with our books, won’t you?