Green Apple Books will be reducing our footprint and returning to a single storefront at 506 Clement Street. By September 1, 2021, we will close our fiction and music annex and combine all our offerings under one roof.
We opened the annex in 1996 in a climate of ascendant “superstores” like Barnes & Noble and Borders. This was before Amazon was a big player, and we were trying to increase our book inventory and add other products (like laser discs and CD-Rom games!). We are now “right-sizing.” The depth and breadth of the book selection aren’t shrinking appreciably, but we are curating to the current demand.
While bookstores always operate on razor-thin margins and rely wholly on consumer support, please know that our bookstores are not in financial distress. The Covid-19 pandemic and resultant challenges play only a small part in this decision. We have been strongly supported throughout the pandemic by booklovers, customers, the San Francisco and US governments, donors, friends, authors, artists, publishers, BINC, the ABA, CALIBA, and our colleagues.
Green Apple is still here at all thanks to readers who prefer to browse—who want to discover books, who want to interact with booksellers—not just search and buy. We add curation, personality, humanity, community, events, and some beauty to the book buying experience. And we will continue to be that store while offering an ecommerce option online, too.
When this consolidation is complete in September, Green Apple Books will be an even more book-centric bookstore and less of an emporium. We will still offer a small selection of magazines, LPs, gifts, and even used DVDs, but the focus will be on books.
And on a personal note, please know that owners Kevin and Pete didn’t make this decision lightly. Shrinking Green Apple is not a defeat; it’s just another step in the continuing evolution of Green Apple to the ever-changing bookselling landscape. We think the right-sized Green Apple Books will continue to be a destination-worthy bookstore, and we look forward to our 100th Anniversary party on Saturday Oct 1, 2067. Save the date.