Saturday, May 31, 2008

Smells Like Great Literature

In a recent, wide-ranging article dealing with research libraries, Google Book Search, the mutability of knowledge and other such things, Robert Darnton offers this delightful tidbit:
"Books give off special smells. According to a recent survey of French students, 43 percent consider smell to be one of the most important qualities of printed books -- so important that they resist buying odorless electronic books. CafeScribe, a French on-line publisher, is trying to counteract that reaction by giving its customers a sticker that will give off a fusty, bookish smell when it is attached to their computers."

As it happens, just this morning a customer in Accent on Books commented on how much she liked the way the store smelled. I'm assuming she was referring to the books, rather than to the booksellers.

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