Baby Boomers Still the Spine of Independent Book Selling – ABC News

This 2013 photo provided by Changing Hands Bookstore shows, owner Gayle Shanks, in the Changing Hands Bookstore in Tempe, Ariz. In 1974, Shanks was a 23-year-old idealist raised on the activism of the previous decade and anxious to make a difference herself. "Books had changed my life and I assumed they could change other people's lives as well," says Shanks, whose Changing Hands Bookstore is now among the country's leading independent sellers. (Kristi Church/Changing Hands Bookstore via AP)

This 2013 photo provided by Changing Hands Bookstore shows, owner Gayle Shanks, in the Changing Hands Bookstore in Tempe, Ariz. In 1974, Shanks was a 23-year-old idealist raised on the activism of the previous decade and anxious to make a difference herself. “Books had changed my life and I assumed they could change other people’s lives as well,” says Shanks, whose Changing Hands Bookstore is now among the country’s leading independent sellers. (Kristi Church/Changing Hands Bookstore via AP)

Baby Boomers Still the Spine of Independent Book Selling

Bookstores have a long history as allies and nurturers of social movements, and a generation of owners came of age when works ranging from Joseph Heller’s “Catch-22” to Eldridge Cleaver’s “Soul on Ice” were an integral part of the uprisings of the ’60s and ’70s.Shanks, Mitchell Kaplan of Books & Books in Coral Gables, Florida, and Kris Kleindienst of Left Bank Books in St. Louis are among many baby boomers who founded stores with little sense of how to run a business, but a profound sense of purpose. They are now pillars of a smaller but still vital independent-bookstore community, and models for the wave of younger owners who have opened stores in recent years.

Source: Baby Boomers Still the Spine of Independent Book Selling – ABC News

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