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Publicity-Hungry Bookseller Lures AP Reporter to Clearance Sale with Flickering Lights

book-burning-missouri.jog.jpgThings must be awfully slow for AP reporter David Twiddy out in Kansas City, for him to be spending time on Prospero’s Books owner Tom Wayne and his recent book-burning stunt. “This is the funeral pyre for thought in America today,” Wayne announced as he set the first stack of excess inventory on fire outside his shop—or maybe, as he told Twiddy, it’s just “a good excuse for fun.” But the most likely explanation is the one Twiddy offers a few grafs down: “Dozens of other people took advantage of the book-burning, searching through the books waiting to go into the flames for last-minute bargains.”

Somehow, I don’t think this is quite the sort of thing Dana Gioia and the NEA had in mind when they published “Reading at Risk,” which Wayne cites as a justification for destroying his unsold inventory.

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