After 73 years, Robin’s Bookstore has closed

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Post by Michael Andre

13th Annual Poetry Ink: 100 Poets Reading. At Robins Bookstore upstairs. Sunday, April 5, 1pm.
13th Annual Poetry Ink: 100 Poets Reading. At Robins Bookstore upstairs. Sunday, April 5, 1pm.

Amazon and Barnes & Noble and Border’s and, of course, the Great Economic Downturn forced Larry Robin’s hand. His street-level store is gone and already for rent. However, come February 16, you can mount a flight of stairs next to the old store and reach a new second-hand bookstore and performance space.  What that will be like — remains to be seen.

Robin maintains their website, and you can buy books from him that newfangled way:   While I’m at it, let me mention my two favorite newfangled book dealers, Marc Kessler in Boston; and Suzanne Ostro in New York.  Whodonut Books in Centre City at 1931 Chestnut Street is an excellent store which uses AbeBooks.com for Internet orders.

Meanwhile the very best bookstore in Philadelphia is now  — Joseph Fox at 1724 Sansom. The bookstore opened in 1951 and maintains a close relationship between authors and readers. They average five book-signings a week. It’s the best place to meet writers and buy signed and perhaps valuable contemporary first editions.  Everybody has a website; the Fox site is here.  Now run by Joseph’s widow and their son Michael Fox, it’s the most essential place.

–Michael Andre is a poet and publisher. He last wrote for Artblog about Streetcar Named Desire at the Walnut Street Theatre.

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michael andre, robin's bookstore

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