Thursday, February 19, 2009

Powell's Books

I love book stores and visit them in whatever city I happen to be in. A recent trip to Portland for the Portland Jazz festival obviously meant a trip to Powell's Books. Taking up a city block, they are several stories with an easy layout organized by room colour. My friend and I agreed that we would meet back by the front door in two hours. He made a beeline for history, and I headed straight for the Rose Room dedicated solely to kids books. Since it was a Sunday, I had to thread my way through crowds of kids and parents; something you don't see that often in book stores these days. It isn't hard to figure out why Powell's is so successful while so many of our independent booksellers are closing their doors. Powell's has struck gold when it comes to customer ratings, and here's how:
  1. they have a great website with a newsletter, staff pics, etc.
  2. they employ plenty of staff to help you find what you're looking for
  3. they have special sections for award-winners
  4. rooms are colour coded according to type of book such as Rose for kid's books with further designated sections with each room
  5. every area has multiple shelf tags indicating staff picks, hot reviews, etc. making it easy to find great books no matter what section you're in
  6. and they sell quality used books on the same shelf as new tiles, ensuring their customers get the biggest book bang for their buck (I bought 3 used books which were so inexpensive that I decided I could afford 8 new titles; by the way, I went in specifically looking for two books!)
  7. they even have a coffee shop!
So, if you happen to be passing through Portland, run don't walk to Powell's Books. Hey, they even have a few of my titles, if you happen to be looking. Later. Sheryl

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