While the headline is positive, dig into the details and you’ll see the nuances. While many of us are reading (even reading more as we age), there are a significant number of people who are not reading books at all.

The most recent Gallup poll released January 6, 2017 … “Rumors of the Demise of Books Greatly Exaggerated” … indicates that older adults (aged 65 and older) are reading more than they did in 2002 with 85% now reading one or more books a year (up from 68%).

91% of young adults report reading at least one book in the past year.

Those in the middle years (aged 30 to 64) who reported they have not read a single book in 2016 is a whopping obama_read_poster_01111739%.

Why this matters is that this is the age group raising children, seeing them from birth through the college years.

If they don’t see us reading, they won’t see the value of reading.

From presidents to mayors, school principles to parents and grandparents, young people watch us. We are their role models.

The future of reading, depends on making sure our actions match our words.

We are beginning a brand new era. Just when some members of the media proclaimed that the ebook would kill bookstores, people are speaking up, finding ways to see indie bookstores in their communities continue to keep the doors open.

The closing of Davis-Kidd Booksellers in Nashville, Tennessee has been a huge loss for the community. Shortly after the announcement was made by its parent company, Joseph-Beth Booksellers, people pulled together to find out how to fill the void. Besides being open every day, the bookstore offered wildly popular author events and children’s programs. It contributed to the annul book festival, supported the good work of numerous literacy non-profit organizations, helped schools and others fundraise, and added to the rich cultural life in Nashville. People wanted to find a way to get all of that back.

We joined the second meeting, which was held in February at the Green Hills Public Library, to provide information and present some opportunities. More than 40 people attended … all committed to find a way to keep an indie bookstore alive and contributing to their rich literary cultural life.

The desire stretches to other communities throughout the country. Ithaca, New York is working on a bookstore co-op and within three weeks has gathered pledges worth $250,000 to help develop a new community bookstore.

These communities are making a huge statement about the worth of a physical bookstore — to the quality of our daily lives, the richness of our communities, and the abilities of our literacy efforts. Bookstores have always combined the entrepreneurial energy with philanthropic efforts. What’s emerging is a new way to combine both … communities creating community bookstores.