Friday, January 09, 2015

Bookstores on Wheels

Well, here's something else I never would have thought of doing: a bookstore on wheels.  Think about that for a moment.  No ruinous rent increases to pay, no foot-traffic worries, no danger of being stuck in a neighborhood that's going downhill fast or in a strip-mall that's loosing the battle to keep customers coming in.  Depending, of course, on city ordinances regarding where a bookseller can park his bookstore for the day, this just has to be better.

One of the pioneers in mobile bookstore set-up is Austin's Fifth Dimension Books (the bookstore shown in the picture just above).  

According to the store's website:
We invite you to step inside our 1987 Chevy P30 bookmobile (which served as a library bookmobile for 25 years), and bask in the glow of geek from your choice of used, rare, out-of-print, and collectible books. Appease the internal beast that hungers for the futuristic, fantastic, weird, and warped, and visit 5DB today.
Our bookmobile delivers a bite size, rotating offering of our immense and carefully curated collection of books to locations throughout town. We keep you posted on our hours and whereabouts via Facebook, Twitter, Yelp, and here on our website.
I imagine that mobile bookstores would do well at county fairs, school fairs, and the like, too.  Potential readers are out there, be they new ones or those not inclined to visit brick & mortar bookstores.  If they won't come to the bookstore, bring the bookstore to them.  That's like for cool is that?

Check out this newspaper article about Fifth Dimension Books for some detail about the owners and the store.


  1. I saw a mobile bookstore that was made from a boat- on the Thames in London. I was so disappointed it was closed and I couldn't go in!

    1. That would have been an experience, Jeanne. Carving out their own special niche seems to be a wise bookstore move...these ideas are really innovative.

  2. That is totally awesome! I would love if a mobile bookstore parked outside my workplace once every couple of weeks. My bank account probably wouldn't like it but you can't put a price on happiness :)

    1. That would be cool for sure, Stefanie. I like this store's idea of communicating locations, hours, and dates via Facebook and their own website. This seems like something that might just work, at least until everyone else catches up to the idea.