When I saw the title of The Millions: The First Ever Internet Bookstore Blog, I was intrigued. Anything to do with reading or books is, in my opinion, terrific. But what exactly is an online bookstore blog? I decided to start at the beginning and find out.
Launched in March of this year, The Millions began like many other blogs. The author, a young man named Max (an avid baseball fan and, I quickly discover, a prolific reader), lives in Los Angeles, co-owns a fledgling record label, and works at a bookstore. The first month of entries are typical blog fare: descriptions of parties he’s attended, a bit about his job, some excerpts from articles he’s written, etc. But very quickly the focus of The Millions narrows. The author has a passion for books, good books, and he thinks you should too. As he states in his manifesto (of sorts):
given that you and I will only be able to read a finite number of books in our lifetime, then we should try, as much as possible, to devote ourselves to reading only the ones that are worth reading, while bearing in mind that for every vapid, uninspiring book we read, we are bumping from our lifetime reading list a book that might give us a profound sort of joy
Slowly, the concept behind The Millions emerges and the tagline begins to make sense. Max explains that his dream is to one day own a real bookstore but until then he’ll settle for an online version. Books, old and new, are discussed in each entry. Included is a link to Amazon.com’s listing of the title. Each time someone clicks that link and buys a copy, Max get a small referrer’s fee. Thus the “internet bookstore” description.
It’s a good idea, and Max is sufficiently well read to pull it off. Although he occasionally comes off as a bit pompous, his genuine love of books and his ability to get the reader excited about them as well is what makes the site noteworthy.
The design of The Millions is a simple two-column layout in blue and orange. The site looks good in the major browsers, but the text is a bit on the small side at higher resolutions.
Ask A Book Question is a new feature at The Millions, and as the site grows I believe it will prove to be useful and fun. Send your question to the author and he will post it on the site, so that the blog audience may discuss it.
It will be interesting to see how this blog develops. If you love books, stop by The Millions and have a look around. Not only will you find up to date reviews and discussions of classic literature and what’s popular today, you’re also bound to find some titles you’ve never heard of before. It’s a solid addition to the world of literary blogs.The Millions (A Blog About Books) AKA Ask a Book Question