Danny Caine, owner of The Raven Book Store in Lawrence, Kan., thought the store had weathered the worst of obstacles when it managed to stay in business after a giant Borders bookstore moved across the street. Then came the threat from Amazon’s domination of the book-selling business.
Now, Mr. Caine and independent bookstore owners everywhere are grappling with the same problem: How to contain the financial fallout from the coronavirus outbreak.
Just when the industry had started to see a period of stability and strength, independent bookstore owners are bracing for the devastating blow of having to shut their doors and cancel book signings and literary festivals, events that are the lifeblood of their businesses.
Many are finding novel ways to stop the coronavirus pandemic from derailing their businesses — from hosting book groups via videoconference calls to curbside book pickups, where staff members take books to customers in their