One of the Most Iconic Bookstores in the World Is in Trouble—but You Can Help

Shakespeare and Company has weathered many storms, but the pandemic has been the most devastating of them all.

For over a century the legendary bookstore Shakespeare and Company has beamed out from the Left Bank of Paris like a lighthouse of literature.

The former 16th-century monastery on Rue de la Bûcherie, and its previous site not far away at 12 Rue de l’Odéon, has been a home away from home for the Lost Generation in the 1920s and the Beatnik generation in the 1950s, a publisher and reading resource for the likes of James Joyce and Ernest Hemingway, and shelter for the estimated 30,000 “tumbleweeds”—young writers and enthusiasts allowed to stay for free—over the years.

But the economic disaster wrought by the coronavirus pandemic has hit independent bookstores in France, including this timeless Anglophone institution, hard. Deemed “non-essential” by the government even during the country’s second lockdown, they were forced to close to in-person customers, while commerce for online behemoths like Amazon has soared. Paris mayor Anne Hidalgo herself warned city-goers: “Don’t buy on Amazon. Amazon is the death of our bookshops and our neighborhood life.”

Continue reading “One of the Most Iconic Bookstores in the World Is in Trouble—but You Can Help”

“The book is a refuge”: in bookstores, the surge in sales and the solidarity of customers

After two catastrophic months, the book economy experienced an unexpected rebound with deconfinement. But faced with the uncertainties to come, publishers could bet everything on safe values

Like a Christmas in the middle of summer! Here is the image which returns in the mouth of the booksellers. After two catastrophic months (according to the Bookstore Observatory, between mid-March and mid-May, sales fell by 95% compared to 2019), the book economy experienced an unexpected rebound with deconfinement: + 19.6% from May 11 to July 19 compared to 2019. “An excellent surprise”, rejoices Xavier Moni, president of the Syndicate of the French bookstore. Continue reading ““The book is a refuge”: in bookstores, the surge in sales and the solidarity of customers”

Moriarty at Shakespeare & Company

Moriarty is a musical collective made up of five artists of French, American, Swiss and Vietnamese origin. The members were mainly born in France to American parents. The group was named Moriarty in reference to Dean Moriarty, the hero of On the Road by Jack Kerouac.

Initially, the group consisted of eight members: singer Charlène Dupuy, drummer Médéric de Vanssay, and saxophonist Davide Woods have since left the group. Rosemary Standley joined in 1999. Moriarty went from performing traditional blues to rock’n’roll. Successive departures from the group reduced them to five members (Rosemary, Arthur, Thomas, Charles and Stephan), and forced them to play acoustically.
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