Like everyone else, independent bookstores are struggling in today's knuckle-dragging economy, but their problems started years ago with the arrival of big-box bookstores in malls.
IndieBound goes a long way to remind us that we should support local businesses, like independent booksellers, which keeps jobs and dollars in the community. According to the American Booksellers Association, $68 of $100 spent at a local business stays in the community whereas only $43 of $100 when locals shop at national chain stores.
I should point out that ABA is the copyright holder of this app, so you'll have to consider the source if the numbers seem suspect.
IndieBound is similar to Stanza and other apps aimed at book buyers (eBook and hardcopy). You can use the app to scan lists of recommended title and bestsellers, search for titles and find nearby stores based on your iPhone’s location.
IndieBound features lists of monthly great reads, notable books, summer reading and other categories from the perspective of the local Mom & Pop bookstores, assuming they’re still alive. Great reads and notables are updated monthly.
Tap a category on the list, tap a book on the list and read all about it -- from what Indie Booksellers have to say to the book’s cover.
You’ll also be able to pull up a list of stores that sell the book, sorted by nearest to farthest. Tap anyone of the sellers on the same list, and IndieBound will transport you to the seller’s Web site where you can buy the book online.
Tapping the Store Finder brings up a lists of bookstores in your immediate surroundings. Scroll the list, poke an item and you’ll get details about the shop such as location, telephone number hours and a description (on the top of my lists are always places that offer free Wi-Fi).
IndieBound is a no-frills, easy-to use app. It’s a bit plain, but that’s for the good because IndieBound is a quick and pleasing read.