Son bookdave accompanied me this afternoon to the modestly named "Great Opening" of a new Half-Price Books nearby. Our approach was delayed by heavy traffic which, unbeknown to us, was headed to Half-Price Books also! When we finally got into the strip mall parking lot, finding a space meant circling up and down the aisles until someone pulled out.
Inside, it was packed like Christmas. Every section had at least a handful of browsers, some being so packed we couldn't even squeeze in no matter how many "Excuse me's" we offered. All four cash registers were ringing constantly and there were two lines that stretched from them to the very back of the store. When we finally went to pay, our wait time on line was fifteen minutes even with a fast-moving line!
This was, of course, a new store whose opening was accompanied by major local TV ad campaign and targeted emails. (Don't ask me how they hired staff as I never saw a single listing for them as I searched the job sites recently.) The question will be what the place looks like a month from now. They're about a mile from a B&N, a mile or so from one of those little trading romances used bookstores and about half a mile from the best comic book store in the Greater Cincinnati area. We'll see...
Oh, and what did we get? We spent about thirty bucks and got $170.00 worth of cool stuff! Dave got Don Bluth's DRAGON'S LAIR for PC and a stray Discworld novel. Myself, I got buddy Jerry Beck's great DK PINK PANTHER book from a couple years ago, Jim Vadeboncoeur's book on the great portrait painter and former comics artist Everett Raymond Kinstler, vol 3 of DRAWN & QUARTERLY's fantastic WALT & SKEEZIX series and all 39 episodes of the 1970's Japanese TV series, SUPER ROBOT RED BARON! Didn't really see too much else of interest, actually. The usual mix of bargain books, imports and leftovers. Like I said, I'll check back next month and let you all know but the signs at least look hopeful that bookstores are still wanted!