Friday, June 29, 2018

Lake Forest Book Store

Bookstore: Lake Forest Book Store

Location: Lake Forest, Illinois

Why I Love Them: Back when I was writing about Myopic Bookstore I mentioned that I was profiling them, but with reservations. Stores always deserve a few chances to get things right, I mean think about how many times you send a book back to Amazon to get a copy in perfect condition? Or is that just me? The same rules have to be applied to brick and mortar stores. And in fairness to Lake Forest Book Store my issues with them probably have more to do with their overhead and staffing. Now this store is in the transitional category, almost moving on from bookstores I've been to to bookstores I've only ever dealt with online. I have actually never been to Lake Forest Book Store's brick and mortar location, but I have had PLENTY of contact with them over the years, because they are the bookstore that provides all the books at signings within the Illinois library system. So all those times I've ventured across the Wisconsin state line to the flatland to see Lauren Willig, sometimes with other authors, sometimes solo, I've bought my wares from the table set up and manned by Lake Forest Book Store. Nothing will ever beat the display when I went to a joint event with Lauren and Tasha Alexander, there were so many copies of their books the tables groaned. But at a recent event in 2016, Love Across Ages and Cultures which you had to register for so they had a head count, I had issues, in that they had no backlog of the author's work, even though I reached out to them in advance! In fact they were snippy and told me I was in the wrong when I confronted them at the event. So here's hoping they mended their ways? If not... there are plenty of other stores to support.   

Best Buy: My best buy was back in 2008 and was the first time I went to one of the events put on by the Illinois library system. Cozy Librarians, which is a now defunct website to the best of my knowledge, had brought together a plethora of amazing authors for a panel. I of course went for Lauren Willig, but because of this event Julie Hyzy became one of my mom's favorite authors. It was in the middle of one of my worst ever semesters at school and of course that meant that everything was conspiring against me, even my computer died! So funds were short but I knew the golden rule for book signings, you go, you buy a book. No. Matter. What. It doesn't even have to be the author you're going to see, but it does help. So I picked up a paperback copy of Lauren Willig's The Deception of the Emerald Ring, which I had in hardcover already, but I knew the rules. Ironically I would later make a point of having all Lauren's books in paperback and hardcover, for first editions versus ease of reading, but at the time I was just discovering her as a writer and this rule wasn't in effect. The event was wonderful and fun, all the authors doing a little intro about themselves but then having a wonderful back and forth discussion about murder mysteries. It basically made me want to just go home and read for days and days, which I didn't have the luxury of doing. But the signing line was really my jam. I finally got to talk to Lauren in person, versus just talking online, and I think my friend Huyen said it best, "Lauren feels like the kind of person we'd be friends with." I couldn't have agreed more.  


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