The White Horse Bookshop goes online - taking a leaf out of Amazon's jungle
"Apparently the internet weighs about the same as an egg. All that knowledge and nonsense, in an egg. And now it weighs a little bit more because our website, our long-promised, agonised-over website is live!"
And you can join it simply by clicking on the bookshop's stylish advertisement to the right of this article.
Mr MacLennan explains how big-league online shopping began, ironically, with books: "Our dear friend Jeff Bezos, when launching his 'online' retail Business Amazon, used books as his Trojan horse. Jeff is not a stupid man."
Bezos, he tells us, was the 'outsider' who took advantage of the ending of controlled prices for books - controlled by the publishers. But he also"...proved to be the first to understand...that books have always been at the forefront of revolution." And he calls in evidence a whole quiz-worth of revolutionary authors from Luther to Arthur C. Clarke, and from Greer to Victor Hugo.
"I am strangely proud writing this that the thing I am most connected to in life is a thing of such consequence. I am now also very proud that, rather than hiding in the shadows, hoping that the world will change back to what it was, we have decided to offer our own version of the future."
"In building our new website we have been very careful to try and replicate our actual shop." And with a little help from Google, when you visit the site you can also take a tour round the shop.
"Please", Mr MacLennan adds, "do have a wander round the site and, if you have read anything featured, do leave a review. I would love to hear all thoughts on what is good and what could be better."
"We always try to be bespoke, which means that we will work to fulfil our customers' desires rather than the desires of a computer programme." So no "Customers also bought...."
The White Horse Bookshop will be offering a service that is unique in the world of privately owned, independent bookshops: "We hope that after Christmas you will be able to order any book from us, whether we have it in stock or not and that all the art materials will be available to purchase online also."
At last we can buy online and be buying local - from the White Horse Bookshop.