This Morning I Went to the New Laurel Bookstore

Sometimes you go to a bookstore, make a purchase, and leave, and it’s an unremarkable experience, albeit enjoyable  because it’s a bookstore. Other times you go to the new and improved Laurel Bookstore in downtown Oakland, gape at the spiffy new environs, grab a copy of Matt Kirby’s THE LOST KINGDOM simply because it pleases you that it was on the shelf so close to your book, have store owner Luan Stauss call out “Oh, you’re just looking for your own book, aren’t ya?” in a good-natured way, chat with an author whose cookbook was a Beard Award finalist, see 2 copies of your book on the shelves, have your picture taken with your book and a customer from Tasmania who’s traveling up and down the West Coast before going to a mystery writers’ convention, autograph the book for the Tasmanian mystery writer visitor just before she buys it, pick up the new Novella Carpenter book and find out Novella Carpenter was actually in the store earlier that morning, and realize you’ve just had THE BEST DROP-IN BOOKSTORE SHOPPING EXPERIENCE EVER. Yup. I’ll be frequenting the new Laurel Bookstore on a regular basis from now on.

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