There is a peculiar sense of wonder and helplesness whenever one steps inside a bookstore. I know I am not alone in feeling overwhelmed by the vast amount of choices at my disposal. Do I go to my favorite author? Or should I give a new author a chance to win my approval?
A bookstore in the Ginza neighborhood of Tokyo, Japan does things differently enough to not present this problem to its patrons. Instead of a dozen titles lined up in bookshelves, Morioka Shoten Ginza only offers a single title for six days, after which it is replaced by another title. The bookstore holds evening events with the intention of readers connecting more intimately with the author of the chosen book title.
As you can imagine, the design of the bookstore itself is very sparse and minimal.
Yoshiyuki Morioka, a clerk who worked for a store selling secondhand books, came up with the idea when he attended an event which let visitors pitch an idea to the CEO and investor of takram design engineering firm. Morioka’s idea, “Regeneration of a bookseller atom – a bookstore with a single book” certainly caught their interest, and by May of 2015 the bookstore which sells only a single title was opened to the public.