I think that all bookstores should be smallish and jumbled. It’s okay if the books are a little out of order, or if one section spills into another. Or onto the floor, or maybe a chair wedged nearby. And all such bookstores should have a cat. At least one.
The photo above is one of the two bookstore cats from the little shop in Jim Thorpe. Perfect little bookstore, it had a lot of character and a selection that, while small, was certainly more interesting than most. The cats were friendly and hung out. It was the sort of bookstore I’d hang out in.
I much prefer this kind of bookstore to Barnes & Noble, which is far too big and commercial for my taste. They’re too sterile [italics]. It’s like trying to buy books in a hospital; everything is too neat and aligned and I always have the sneaking suspicion that if I put something back on a shelf wrong, three clerks will descend to chastise me. Public humiliation in a Barnes & Noble.
I’ll stick with the little shops, the used bookstores. And anyplace with a cat and some character.
(On a related notes, many cats make horrible models. My own cat sees the camera come out and hides in the back corner under the couch. But this one was pretty good – it only took a minute or two of goofy kitty noises to get her to grace me with a condescending look.)