'We Are in the Hearts and Minds Business'

"I believe that fiction can change people's hearts and minds. About 90% of the correspondence I received after writing The Storied Life of A.J. Fikry ended with the reader telling me, 'I am now off to visit my independent bookstore.' Surely, these people had noticed that there were fewer bookstores in their communities before reading A.J. Fikry. Surely, they'd come across the ubiquitous think pieces about the end of the American bookstore. And yet, a story can do what a think piece cannot. This is why I write books. And maybe this is why you sell them, too. We aren't in the book business; we are in the hearts and minds business."

--Gabrielle Zevin, whose September Indie Next Pick Young Jane Young was released yesterday by Algonquin, in a letter to booksellers
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