In order to reduce their already low margins, bookshops could only survive by selling enormous numbers of fewer titles so the choice of books would be drastically reduced, with the minority-interest and risky first novels being sacrificed. Similarly, only the large chains would survive a price-war in the current economic climate, so there would soon be a significant reduction in book outlets. Smaller towns would be left without any.
It is largely the size of the print-run that determines the price of a book, so of course US book prices are lower than ours; in Iceland, they are far higher. But it is a mistake to believe that the American book trade is an exemplary model. We have a file of articles and several American mail-order customers to prove that there is a great deal of dissatisfaction with the way bookselling has gone in America.
Rye, East Sussex
7 NovemberReuse content