Friday, January 25, 2008

Karibu Books - The Unfortunate Death Of A Black Bookstore Chain

The Karibu Books chain, based in the Washington, D.C., area and one of the few remaining retailers to specialize in black books, is closing after 15 years. All five stores around the U.S. will close by February 10th. Eso Won Books in Los Angeles has also has been struggling as well. Folks need to pay attention, black-owned bookstores are quickly become a thing of the past.


Woman in Transition January 25, 2008 at 10:19 AM  

They are becoming a thing of the past because they are being swallowed up by major chains and online options. We can thank Wal-Mart type retail for that.

Our local libraries will be next. I dread the day.

Mari-Djata January 25, 2008 at 5:18 PM  

Although I never heard of the store before, I have been trying to search for black bookstores for years without success. It is always sad when a good black business has to give in.

tasha212 January 25, 2008 at 6:15 PM  

I'm sorry to hear that another chain of black bookstores is closing. Both of the Black bookstores that existed when I was growing up closed within a couple of years of opening. I don't understand why with the surge in readership over the last couple of years, black bookstores continue to close. I know its not because we don't read. I think it's hard for black bookstores to compete against the chains like Barnes and Nobles and Border's. Also, because it's a small business, it's hard to offer the bargains and deals that big-name chains can.

Professor Tracey January 25, 2008 at 6:23 PM  

Well said everyone. I am extremely concerned about public libraries as well including school libraries that go under-used at many elementary and middle schools.

BeautyinBaltimore January 30, 2008 at 1:15 PM  

This is so sad. If you ever visit baltimore check out Everyone's place.

Alan December 7, 2009 at 5:09 PM  

"A Community's Bricks and Mortar: Karibu" Read it at

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