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So bookstores. They are the holy land. The promised land. They always have been. At least to me.

I think the first real bookstore (not the book section of a Target) I went to was Borders. It was the only bookstore near my house and the little smol bookworm that I was loved it. The smell of books. The stacks and shelves of books neatly arranged. It was amazing. The books practically glowed there.

But then it closed down because I guess no one likes reading in my area. How could that be?!

So now I can only go to bookstores that are hours away. Like Barnes & Noble. My cousin brought me there for the first time to convince me to go to the mall with her because I hate to go outside and interact with other humans. She invited me to go to the mall to be a normal young teenager and shop. And I gave her a firm "No way." But then!

She said, "It's got a bookstore. A big ol' B and N. Two stories."

I was sold. My soul was hers.

I only visit a real bookstore like that once or twice a year. Maybe three times if I'm lucky. I get the rest of my books from reliable Amazon but it's not the same. I can't caress a physical book and inhale the scent of print (and other people's grubby hands' scents). I can preview some books but not all books. And when I can, I get distracted since I am on the interwebs. And shipping. The book is a bit cheaper there but the shipping usually gets it to the original price in stores or a little more. So I end up scrambling and checking Goodreads for more books to hit that $20 (I think it's $20) for free shipping. I guess that's a deal then.

So Amazon has its pros with the cheaper books and free shipping if you buy a certain total price of books.

But bookstores will forever be the best. They have cute little trinkets and merch sitting around. Amazon does pull up things you can buy along but eh. I like feeling the shiny smooth cold buttons about book jokes and unicorns. I like holding up signs about some sarcasm foundation and saying "Gwen. This is you." I like feeling the fuzzy socks and flipping through the bookmarks of all sizes and shapes.

Ok. I think we figured out from this post that I like touching things and it's true. I have to always be playing with/holding something with my hands. I like holding stuff. If I have a tiny bookbag on, I'll still hold onto water bottles, sunglasses, maps, random brochures I picked up, my cell phone, and some random snack I found. Then when I want to get physical, I dump my junk that I was holding on some poor soul.

Off topic.

Bookstores! The holy land. The place where Madelyn can caress and hold fifty million books in her hands before finding out she's out of money and cannot afford all of her children so she has to put them all back (I put it back in the right place, I swear.). The place where she can smell the books. Where she can roam free and graze upon the stories. The place where people think it's weird for her to be speaking in third person but actually, everywhere is a place where there's people who will think she's weird.

Bookstores. Bring them back to my town! The children need it! For the children!

Published by Madelyn Le