Local Independent Bookstores Adapt To New Coronavirus Reality With Adjusted Buying Options


  • Photo via Mac's Backs

As businesses around Northeast Ohio and the rest of the country learn to deal with our current reality of mandated closings and quarantines, they have begun to adjust in order to make ends meet. For local booksellers, that’s been in the form of online, e-mail and phone orders and fulfillment of orders via pick-up (including curbside), local delivery or shipping.

Amazon might be the first option that pops into your mind when you're thinking about that new book you want to hunker down with, but it is absolutely, vitally important to instead get your books from local independent stores.

Suzanne DeGaetano of Mac’s Backs (1820 Coventry Rd., Cleveland Heights, 216-321-2665) has stayed consistently busy throughout the COVID-19 crisis. “We are keeping everyone and are committed to doing that for as long as possible. That is why the online orders and telephone orders have been so helpful, it is giving us a lifeline to extend that as long as we can,” said DeGaetano.

Other book stores in the area are implementing similar policies. Their doors are all closed, but that doesn’t mean browsing isn’t available. Some of the bookstores have their catalogs available online, and if they don’t have all their own books, they at least have all available books that their distributor has in stock and can get most books in a short period of time. You can place and pay for your order without ever stepping foot in the store, except to grab your book from the counter in some cases.

“We’ve actually had a customer call and say, ‘You know what kind of books I like, pick a few out for me and I’ll come get them,’” said the owner of Mac’s.

“Bookstores around the country are doing what they can to survive. And luckily, it seems like the public is really responding so far,” said DeGaetano.

Other local stores that are operating similarly to Mac’s are as follows:

Appletree Books (12419 Cedar Rd., Cleveland Heights, 216-791-2665):

The Bookshop in Lakewood (15230 Madison Ave., Lakewood, 216-221-5222)

Fireside Books (29 North Franklin St., Chagrin Falls, 440-247-4050):

Learned Owl (204 North Main St., Hudson, 330-653-2252)

Loganberry Books (13051 Larchmere Blvd., Shaker Heights, 216-795-9800):

Visible Voice (2258 Professor Ave., Tremont, 216-961-0084)

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