Another independent bookshop bites the dust - Reads taken over by Easons
We're sorry to see this happen - the conglomeration of Dublin bookstores into the hands of a couple of big corporate players doesn't portend much good for the reading public. People may not realise this, but both Hodges Figgis ("Dublin's leading independent bookstore", says the NY Times) and Waterstones - who face each other on Dawson Street - are in fact owned by the same parent company, namely HMV. Beats us as to where the competition is supposed to be when it comes to physical bookstores (and smug Amazonians, just wait for 'variable pricing' to creep in for books, in addition to Internet purchase taxes).
And it's only when you browse through smaller independent bookstores (like Connolly Books, in Mick Wallace's northside Italian quarter) that you begin to realise just how sterile the reading choice in high-street chain-stores in fact is. We're not going to hold our breath waiting for someone in this PD-influenced government to kick up a fuss over this growing consolidation in the hands of a couple of UK corporate owners. But it'd be nice to be proved wrong in our cynicism, just this once.
Well, another old Dublin haunt of ours now goes into memory. Reads has always aggressively fought their old rivals in terms of discounts, and as to character we're not too sure where else in Dublin one can find such a reliable stocker of positively smokin' female staff. Getting a low-wage, expensive, colourless Easons branch in exchange is a poor consolation prize.