Kenny’s book store is Ireland’s biggest online book shop, stocking over half a million new and secondhand books, and with access to five million, all with free worldwide delivery. Selling books since 1940, Kenny’s is a family business, and Desi Kenny will be bringing us his thoughts on books and bookshops….
I’m delighted to contribute to this Blog but had to ask “What’s a Blog?”
I am reminded of the request we received from the Library of Congress when they asked us could we handle their Irish Approval Plan or be their Irish Vendor. My bother Conor answered, “Of course we can, what’s an Approval Plan?” – 32 years later we’re still the Irish vendors to the Library of Congress.
If a blog means that you want me to chat about books, of course I will. Being based firmly in the twentieth century, I am being dragged kicking and screaming into the twenty first and have just about reached 1990. Having said that, there is no doubt in my mind that, despite my personal anathema towards it, technology presents a whole new challenging way of selling books and making books available to a global audience.
The most challenging aspect of this is to recreate the atmosphere of what I call the “Full Book Buying Experience” in Cyberspace while retaining the ethos of a genuine Book Shop. There is no doubt that the whole concept of the Book as we know it is being challenged by other means of communication, but it is still near impossible to beat the idea of curling up with the individual volume, that is yours and yours alone, dog eared, battered and all, beside the fire. As John McGahern once said it is the most intimate moment in a person’s life and as such is precious and worth preserving.