Less than a month after his appearance at an Amazon warehouse in Tennessee rankled members of the American Booksellers Association, President Obama has again betrayed the nation's bookstore elite. This time, he concluded his family's summer vacation in Martha's Vineyard without their traditional visit to the Bunch of Grapes Bookstore in Vineyard Haven.
Not that the president was short on ways to occupy his time on the island. He played 18 holes of golf nearly every day last week, enjoyed cocktails at the home of campaign advisor Broderick Johnson, and shot hoops at an Oak Bluffs school with White House buddies.
But he never found time to take his daughters to the Bunch of Grapes Bookstore, "where he typically takes them on their full first day of vacation to pick up summer reading," the Associated Press reports. What does it all mean?
In 2010, Obama's visit to the store yielded fresh copies of Tinkers by Paul Harding and A Few Corrections by Brad Leithauser, which he purchased, and Freedom by Jonathan Franzen, which he was given an advance copy of as a gift. The following summer, Obama returned to the store, but his staff asked that his selections remain confidential (though FreeRepublic.com reported that he left with copies of Aldous Huxley's Brave New World, Emma Donoghue's Room, and Daniel Woodrell's The Bayou Trilogy).
Book trade newsletter Shelf Awareness wonders if he followed up on his warehouse talk by putting his book-buying habits where his mouth is—and ordering his reads from Amazon.