Here's a fresh sign Ann Arbor isn't like other places: Independent bookstores are a growing business niche.
Two new shops in a handful of months aren't a trend likely to draw venture capital interest, but that's two more than pop up in most places during an era of e-readers and downloads.
Megan and Peter Blackshear, who'll open Bookbound this summer on the north side, have faith in a business he knows well, as Ben Freed describes at AnnArbor.com.
Blackshear worked for Borders for over 20 years and has 12 years experience as a bargain book buyer. . . .
“Independent bookstores, especially ones where the owner is on the premises, can connect to customers much better than the big stores could,” he said. . . . "That really makes a difference."
The couple conferred with Hilary Lowe and Mike Gustafson, who in April opened an Ann Arbor bookstore named Literati on East Washington Street. The college town also has two older stores in the same field -- Nicola's Books on the west side and Aunt Agatha's downtown.
"We’ve been doing well, and I’m excited that Book Bound is going to be here now too,” Lowe said. “I think it’s going to be great and it will add even more to the book culture we have in Ann Arbor.”