B&N Local Interests Fails Military Spouses in Mira Mesa

Wednesday, August 29, 2012


My title today looks like some kind of newspaper headline, right? Well, yesterday I was mighty disappointed in my local Barnes & Noble bookstore. Before I tell you why, I want to give you some back story.

I am a bibliophile, plain and simple. I love books, and I love the feeling of holding a book in my hands. My in-laws bought me a Kindle when I graduated from my Master's program more than a year ago, but it gets so little use because I love the smell, touch, weight, and sound of a book as it is being consumed by my voracious mind.

The first military spouse book I purchased followed my increasing work with military families in my area. I figured, "Maybe I should get to know their world a bit better." I also did some research on the Internet and talked with people I knew who had been in the military.

When Jeff joined the Navy, I reread that book three times, just to make sure everything sank in correctly. Then I read his Basic Training book for Dummies. Then I started reading every blog/forum/discussion board I could find, gobbling up information faster than I could comprehend it.

Since then, I've grown a little weary (and wary) of the material I find online. Without my official dependent ID I can't just go pester the support staff on base, so I have to rely on hearsay. However, spending hours on the computer combing the Internet for information that stands up to my standards (let's just say Wikipedia doesn't make the cut), it's gets tiresome.

So I thought, "Hey, why not visit the bookstore?" So that is precisely where I went last night, dragging Jeff along with me. We searched high and low until we found a "military history" section in our Mira Mesa Barnes & Noble. Nada.

We did a second search, just to be sure we didn't miss anything. I even checked the "Women's Issues" section. Null.

Finally, I asked a bookstore attendant, and she asked me if I had checked the "Local Interests" section. I must have looked like a bewildered wombat, because she promptly turned on her heel (hey, maybe she's former Navy!) and headed back the way we had just come. At first I couldn't tell what she was referring to when she said, "Here it is." By the time I realized I was staring at the six books that made up the "Local Interests" section, I realized she was gone.

For living in a city that boasts the largest Naval/Marine port on the West Coast, this "Local Interests" section was pretty damn pitiful. It had one book for spouses, the book on boot camp we already own, and several other about Seal Team Six.

Shock quickly took over.

So we headed home, and I turned to my favorite fall-back, Amazon.com, which hasn't failed me yet. I ordered the book I saw in the store (which didn't have a price and no one could be bothered to look it up for me), as well as a few others. I even ordered two books for my Kindle. These are:
In the mail and headed my way are:
You can bet your bonnet that I will be reviewing these books, as well as the ones I already own, because I am already noticing some interesting things as I read them.

In all, I know it's not really B&N's fault, because there truly are not that many Milspouse books out there to begin with. But really? Six books and three of them are about Seal Team Six? C'mon! This is San Diego, after all!

(Images: Books, Kindle)

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