Thanks DTLow, I've upvoted it in the Mac forum.
Does this issue not apply to Windows versions? Looks like it might ("Notebook View Missing?" and "Feature request: change Notebooks Layout back to how it used to be").
Why isn't this feature listed in Evernote Feature Requests?
I agree completely that the "grid view" was highly preferable for Notebooks view. At the very least, there should be an option to toggle from "grid view" to "list view".