Bestselling author and bookstore owner Amy Stewart takes an offbeat and lighthearted look at the future of the book.
After the ebook renders bookstores obsolete, a young couple finds themselves in the unlikely position of owning one of the last bookstores in America. But if it isn't keeping itself afloat selling books, what is it selling? A hilarious glimpse at a future that is almost here.
Nothing is what it seems in the offbeat and out-of-the-way town of Eureka, California. Shrouded in fog and hidden behind a curtain of redwoods, this rundown mill town is home to a peculiar cast of characters, a unique homegrown horticultural industry, and one of the last bookstores in America.
No one is more surprised by the unlikely survival of the Firebreathing Dragon than Lewis Hartman, its newest owner. By the time his uncle Sy died and left the bookstore to Lewis, even the most ardent bibliophiles had abandoned printed books in favor of a charming and highly literate digital device called the Gizmo. Bookstores all over the country had closed their doors. But somehow, the Firebreathing Dragon has kept going.
So how has the Firebreathing Dragon managed to survive the death of the book? And if it isn't keeping itself afloat selling books, what is it selling? Reporters, federal agents, and corporate executives out to salvage their own imperiled industries all converge on the bookstore to uncover its secrets. What they discover is a small town that has fallen under the spell of the Firebreathing Dragon's unique offerings.
In this novella, Amy Stewart explores the strange dynamics of small-town life and the future of that marvelous two thousand year-old communication device, the printed book.
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About the Author
She has appeared on hundreds of national and regional radio and television programs, including CBS Sunday Morning, NPR's Morning Edition, Fresh Air, and Good Morning America. She has written for the New York Times, the San Francisco Chronicle, and every national garden magazine, including Fine Gardening, where she is a contributing editor.
She is the recipient of a National Endowment for the Arts fellowship, the American Horticulture Society's Book Award, and a California Horticultural Society Writer's Award.
Stewart lives in Eureka, California, with her husband Scott Brown. They own an antiquarian bookstore called Eureka Books and tend a flock of unruly hens in their backyard.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
This book was great. Not what I expected at all. But it held my attention to the very end. I'd recommend this book to all...
The Last Bookstore in America is an entertaining read that is thought provoking in making one wonder if all the technological advances we see in our society actually improve our lives. The story makes me wonder if Amy Stewart can see into our future. She takes the "Gizmo's" that are increasingly becoming entrenched in our daily existence, and questions if they are improving our lives, or just act as distractions? ( I have know educated people in their 20's who can't read cursive handwriting or tell time on an analog clock.) Add to this the increasing acceptance of legalizing marijuana, and you have a story that just might be the future of our culture. I think in the end, Amy Stewart wants to remind us all that keeping the best of the "old school" and incorporating it with the inevitable changes that come is the best way to go.
Light reading but enjoyable storyline and characters
The characters are likeable and believable. Though you can guess of a happy ending you keep on reading with a knowing.