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Thursday, August 03, 2006

Cody's Books is Still in Trouble

I thought Cody’s troubles would be over after they closed their famed store on Telegraph Avenue in Berkeley.

I am sorry to say they are not.

I went into their store on 4th Street today, in the tony shopping district in Berkeley, and was dismayed by what I saw.

The shelves looked bare.

Now Cody’s on Telegraph was the kind of place where you knew you could get almost any book, at any time. It was a place of surprises. You could walk in, browse any table in the store, and see something interesting. The shelves were crammed with books, the piles on the tables sometimes tottered over and the store had a feeling of abundance.

I didn’t get that feeling at the store on Fourth Street. There was an awful lot of maple showing, since most of the upper shelves were empty. The front table with the current releases had just had a few copies of some of the current bestsellers and the tables with the new fiction and non-fiction paperbacks had lots of space.

I had driven all away across town to go to this Cody’s. (The one on Telegraph was about 5 minutes from my house) I needed to look at some books for a journalism class I will be teaching this fall, but the store didn’t have the titles I wanted. (And these are recent non-fiction titles) Worst of all, the woman behind the information desk said she couldn’t order one of the books because Cody’s currently owes money to the distributor of that title!

“Didn’t you know we have money troubles?” she asked.

I did. I naively assumed that closing the Telegraph Store would take care of Cody’s problems. Apparently it hasn’t.

Did I help the store out by buying a book? Yes, I bought a paperback for $15. But I had been prepared to buy 4-5 books. They weren’t on the shelves.

1 comment:

renee said...

Sounds like Cody's hasn't figured out what to do in addition to closing the Telegraph store. Didn't they open a branch in San Francisco too? I'm no expert, but it sure doesn't look good.