From Shelf Awareness Pro newsletter, January 4:
“Indie Customer Makes ‘Penance, Reparations’ Payment;”
In the mail shortly after the Christmas rush, Elliott Bay Book Co., Seattle, Wash., received a check for $94.89. The memo section of the check read: “Voluntary penance and reparations for buying books at A.”
General manager Tracy Taylor commented: “While we’ve received anonymous and voluntary penance from past shoplifters, we’ve never received penance from Amazon shoppers. I contacted the customer to inquire further, and he said he felt very guilty about buying books for family on Amazon this year. The customer said he always tries to support us and buy books here, but he had a moment of weakness this year so he looked up the difference between the costs and decided to send us a check for the difference.”
Paying it forward, Elliott Bay is using the “penance and reparations” money to buy and send books to Treehouse, a Seattle nonprofit that helps kids in foster care with basic needs and support.