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Some going-out-of business sales are to start today for Borders bookstores.

A judge on Thursday approved the 40-year-old booksellers' plan to appoint liquidators led by Hilco Merchant Resources and Gordon Brothers Group to sell off its assets.

About 30 to 35 of the stores could be sold to rival chain Books-a-Million Inc. but the two companies are still in talks.

Books-A-Million, based in Birmingham, Ala., will become the second largest U.S. bookseller after Borders liquidates. It operates more than 200 stores in 23 states and the District of Columbia.

Borders, in Ann Arbor, Mich., filed for bankruptcy protection in February. It said earlier this week it planned to liquidate after a potential private-equity bid fell through.

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