Tuesday, April 24, 2007

Chain reaction

With the Australian Book Industry Awards almost upon us, there has been much debate about the Chain Bookseller of the Year award. What constitutes a chain bookseller exactly? Last year, Melbourne's five-store independent group Readings scooped the award to the surprise of many and the bemusement of owner Mark Rubbo, whose business is usually a front-runner for Independent Bookseller of the Year. Clearly, it wasn't going to happen twice. The definition of 'chain' has now been changed to exclude Readings and other regional chains, and to ensure the award goes to one of those large national book retailers for which it was created in the first place. No doubt one of Borders, Angus & Robertson, Collins, Book City or Dymocks will be 'thrilled and surprised' when they win this year's award.

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