Oh Em Gee. Are my eyes deceiving me? Is that Knoxville, TN on the CNN front page? Why yes it is! And we're not talking about the "Don't Say Gay" Bill in this episode! Per the wonderful, sales tax-free overlords at Amazon, Knoxville has been ranked #11 on the Top 20 "Most Well-Read" List! ["Take That, Portland!" Count On It by Cari Wade Gervin, June 9, 2011]
This list includes both print and e-book purchases on the Amazon website. While Gainesville did beat us UT fans (who knew Gators could read, eh?), we were able to beat such prestigious cities as Portland, Oregon; Bellevue, Washington (home of Dave Prince's PC Game collection on Steam); Atlanta, Georgia; and our Nation's Capitol, Washington D.C.
Never in a thousand years would I have imagined Knoxville to top the charts on this one. This joy over the proliferation of education is diluted with economical sadness though. The only way Knoxville would have ranked so highly on this poll is if A.) we paid off Amazon executives in a failed bid to get their distribution warehouse located at the (failed) Midway Industrial Park or B.) we are failing to support our local used book sellers like we should. I'm going with Option B.
As such, I'm urging all bookworms of K-Town to drop their evil online distribution overlords and give full-fledged support to the new Union Avenue Books. This is one "top 20" list I'd love to see us drop off (in addition to bad air quality), but only if we're all still reading.