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A surprise every time with the Biblio-Mat


One of the charms of a used bookstore is that you never know what treasures you’ll find lurking on those dusty shelves, and one clever Canadian bookseller is capitalizing on that charm with a very clever gimmick: the Biblio-Mat.

At Toronto’s The Monkey’s Paw, customers insert two dollars for the pleasure of a random read. Owner Stephen Fowler came up with the idea on a fishing trip with Craig Small of The Juggernaut animation studio, who brought Fowler’s idea to life by building the one-of-a-kind machine.

Fowler noted in an interview with Quill & Quire that most of the response has been positive:

The machine is still in the beta stage, so it doesn’t always work perfectly. The response is sometimes based on that. Of the people who have used the thing so far, almost every person has been pleasantly surprised and completely amused. I can think of two people who were dissatisfied with the book they got, but I can only assume they were people lacking in imagination and enthusiasm. In fact, this is something I’ve observed in the used-book trade: people are always looking for meaning. They’ll get a book and feel as though it was psychically selected for them.

Hey, anything to keep one of our favorite types of establishments in business.

Full story at Quill & Quire via Dark Roasted Blend.

A surprise in every book.

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