An independent bookstore is a retail bookstore which is independently owned. Usually, independent stores consist of only a single actual store (although there are some multi-store independents). They may be structured as sole proprietorships, closely held corporations or partnerships (i.e. a small number of shareholders or partners), cooperatives, or nonprofits. Independent stores can be contrasted with chain bookstores, which have many locations and are owned by large corporations which often have other divisions besides bookselling.
Since the rise of big chains and online booksellers, independent bookstores have been under considerable financial pressure and many have closed due to their inability to compete. Closures in the United States include Kroch's and Brentano's (1995) in Chicago, Gotham Book Mart (2006) in New York, Cody's Books (2008) in Berkeley, Kepler's Books (August 31, 2005), Printers Inc. Bookstore (2001) in Palo Alto, A Clean Well-Lighted Place for Books (2006) in San Francisco, Midnight Special (2004) in Santa Monica, Dutton's Books (2008) in Los Angeles, Coliseum Books (2007) in New York City, and Wordsworth Books (2004) in Cambridge, Massachusetts.
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- Time Running Out For Printers Inc.
- Palo Alto Printers Inc. to close
- MOUNTAIN VIEW / Books Inc. takes over Printers Inc. location
- Saving a bookstore
- "Clean Well-Lighted Place dimming its lights for good". San Francisco Chronicle. July 19, 2006. Retrieved November 28, 2011.
- LAVoice.org (May 7, 2004). "Great Loss – Midnight Special Bookstore to Close for Good". Lavoice.org. Retrieved November 28, 2011.
- "Dutton’s bids loyal customers farewell". Los Angeles Times. March 31, 2008. Retrieved November 28, 2011.
- "Closing store has them at loss for words". Boston Globe. December 1, 2004. Retrieved November 28, 2011.