Author takes on e-books by opening own shop

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A Children’s author and priest has snubbed the trend for Kindles and online books by opening up a traditional book store in the town where Anne Brontë is buried.

Graham Taylor launched his latest venture in Scarborough after being shocked by sales figures – which revealed he had sold three times as many electronic versions than hardbacks and paperbacks.

Determined to try to revive the printed word, the former Whitby curate teamed up with his daughters, who had always dreamed of owning a book store, and opened Taylors on Bar Street just before Christmas.

As well as a book shop, the store features a café and special reading room, kitted out with reading lamps and sofas.

He said: “It stocks novels by local independent authors from around Yorkshire as we wanted to give them shelf space. We will be holding events like signings and talks, where authors will discuss their work.

“We are trying frantically to keep people interested in books. A book is important because it is real and exists in time and space. You can hold it, turn it and smell it. You can’t hold an e-book or turn the pages with your fingers. There is something special and wonderful about a hard copy of a book.

“What we are trying to do is make this a centre for literature in Yorkshire. We have got to fight this Kindle mania.”

However despite a busy two weeks in the store, which saw one visiting couple sit and read books for five hours, the Shadowmancer author believes he is fighting a losing battle.

“A 60-year-old man came in on Christmas Eve and pulled out an iPad and started to read Sherlock Holmes and my heart sank. I think we have lost the battle against the e-book. We are going to be the last chance saloon for the old book shops,” he said.

Mr Taylor said he is currently awaiting a decision over a licence to sell alcohol in the café, which also features work by local artists. Scarborough Borough Council’s licensing sub-committee will decide whether to approve the application next Thursday.

The author also revealed he was looking to open a second store in Whitby.