St. Mark’s Bookshop––a New York City institution for over three decades––and OR Books , a year-old publishing company that means to do away with traditional distribution models––have joined forces to inaugurate a new stage in the evolution of book publishing.

The venture will enable St. Mark’s customers to buy select e-books (as well as printed books) on OR’s list from the bookstore’s website. “It’s a way for us to continue and expand on our close connection with dedicated customers, even in the age of e-reading,” said Bob Contant, the store’s longtime owner. “We can now supply customers with books in any format they prefer––paperback, hardcover, or electronic. And to our knowledge, this marks the first time that any publisher has teamed up with an independent store to sell electronic books.”

Just as St. Mark’s represents the finest tradition of independent bookstore selling, OR is at the forefront of exploring new approaches to book publishing. “We look forward to expanding this program to other stores around the country and around the globe,” said OR Book’s co-publisher John Oakes.

“We see no reason why Google Editions should have all the fun,” he added. “This approach will benefit the store, the publisher, and any independent-minded reader with Internet access.”

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