Bookshops still a page-turner

By James Baker

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Paige's Book Gallery celebrated New Zealand Bookshop day last weekend and will host a book raffle this Saturday. Photo Stuart Munro
Paige's Book Gallery celebrated New Zealand Bookshop day last weekend and will host a book raffle this Saturday. Photo Stuart Munro

This Saturday will see New Zealand's second annual BookShop day.

Throughout the country bookshops will hold events for children and adults alike. In Wanaka children will read to dogs to improve their literacy, and in Hamilton a bookstore will lead kids on a pirate treasure hunt.

Locally Paige's Book Gallery celebrated the day a week early at Girls College last Saturday, to line up with School's 125th reunion.

Ex-students could purchase a book from a book stall and donate it to the school library.

Rochelle Handley from Paige's says the day was a big success.

"We're so lucky for our community because they really wrap themselves around the bookstore."

This was the second time Paige's celebrated the event, and they intend to follow-up by holding a book raffle for all purchases made this Saturday.

She says despite the rise of smart devices, the interest in paper books has not dropped.

"It's the reverse, when the kindle first came we noticed a little bit of a fall off. But we're actually finding that people are tired of wrapping themselves up in screens all day at work. So they actually relish the idea of diving into a good paperback book," said Mrs Handley.

Bookseller's NZ CEO Lincoln Gould says the day is about appreciating the role local bookstores play in the community.

"People go to bookshops to buy books but also to browse and talk to others, so its the community bookshops that have become much more active in recent years," he said.

He says only a few years ago the local bookstore was in decline.

"The story of the bookstore was a very gloomy one only three or four years ago has very much turned around and its very much a positive story now."

- Wanganui Chronicle

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