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I absolutely adore reading. I don’t even want to think about the amount of money I (and my mom while I was growing up) have spent on books over the years.

A few days ago, Borders announced that they were going out of business. Maybe I was burying my head in the sand, but I was really hoping Borders would pull through. Needless to say, I was and still am devastated.

My first thought was, “Where am I going to buy books now?” because Borders is my preferred bookstore.

Then, I mentally catalogued my alternatives. And boy, that was depressing.

1. Buy books online. Yeah, but it’s nearly impossible to replicate the joy of discovery I get at a bricks and mortar store online. Any time I go awhile without going to Borders, I end up saying to myself I need to visit a real bookstore. There’s something about walking into one and seeing thousands of books just waiting for me in all their pretty glory. Oh, the possibilities of what I can read and discover by browsing the aisles.

Also, sometimes it’s hard keeping up with authors, but to go to the romance section and see that a few of my favorites have new releases – Hallelujah! Or maybe there’s a pretty cover that catches my eyes from a new author. I flip it over, fall in love with the blurb and buy the book on the spot.

2. Buy ebooks. I do have a Kobo, which I really like, but I still prefer print books, especially for an author whose books I’ve been collecting for years. At this point, I mainly use the ereader for library books and digital first books.

3. Buy books from Target and Walmart. Yeah, I can and often do, but let’s face it, they’re not bookstores. They have a pretty decent selection of romances, but the selections, in no way, compare to those at a dedicated bookstore. They can’t. That new author I mentioned earlier? Her books probably aren’t going to be in Target because she’s an unknown risk.

4. So Barnes & Noble, right? Yes, I can go to Barnes & Noble, but I never liked that B&N made you pay to be a member of its discount club. Borders didn’t. Borders also sent out weekly coupons making it a little easier to part with my hard-earned money. B&N doesn’t.

In other words, Borders makes me happy. Barnes & Noble doesn’t. Sigh

My solution? I guess I’ll be doing a combination of all the choices with buying books at Target/Walmart and online leading the way.

The closing of Borders leaves a hole in the publishing industry that I’m not sure can be filled completely. Regardless, I guess I’ve got to get with the times because the times will always march forward – with or without me.

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