What is the Amazon bookstore for?

Amazon sells books at their brick-and-mortar stores, but that's not why they want me to come.

Near the Kindle display at the brick-and-mortar Amazon bookstore in Seattle, I overheard one man say to another, “Some people like the feel of a book.” Then he shrugged and added, “Even though you could put every book in this store on one device.” He chuckled.

Amazon opened its Seattle bookstore in 2015 and opened another in San Diego this past summer. It plans to create as many as 400 such stores in the coming years.

Yes, you can buy books there. The small Seattle store, set in an outdoor mall alongside a Banana Republic, a Sun­glass Hut, and a place called Seattle Sun Tan, carries books in fiction, nonfiction, travel, and cooking and has a substantial section of children’s books. It looks more or less like every other soulless chain bookstore.