Remember the old days when browsing a bookshop meant tilting your head at shelves? We saw only the spines, each with a title, shade of colour and the author's name.
Choosing a novel from spines means some dismay as the book you pull out may have little appeal, and so you are forced to put it back and move your eyes further along the shelf. And then joy when you find the novel that you are taking home.
Today, that kind of bookshelf browsing feels like hard work compared to sweeping your eyes across titles laid out on tables. With a glance at the title, the image, the font, the colours, and you can tell almost instinctively whether that book is for you. So easy, why aren't all books laid out like that?
The secret is that the books on these tables occupy valuable real estate, and that valuable space comes at a price. Publishers pay retailers for this space - which is why you find the same books on tables in the same chains.
Not all book shops follow this practice - most independent bookshops put the books they think their customers will like on the table - no charge to publishers!
So please think twice before you are drawn to the table top easy shop at the chains, think of all the good reads you might miss and the joy of discovery.