Sad to report, lovers of independent, neighborhood bookstores have more cause for chagrin. Queen Anne Books, a 24-year-old institution on upper Queen Anne, closed on Halloween with tears and laughter among staff and patrons.
Last April, the bookshop sold to attorney and former King County Superior Court Commissioner Katharine Hershey, a longtime Queen Anne Books customer. Last month, Hershey announced that, unless a buyer was found, the store would close. It amounted to about a two-weeks’ heads-up. Word is there have been potential-buyer discussions.
Meanwhile, as has been known for months, the Bookworm Exchange in Columbia City will close at the end of the year. Owner Jim Holmes has struggled in recent years to keep it going. A pity: Holmes has created a well-stocked bookshop as comfortable as one’s own living room, with a great children’s section.
If parents think they can take their children up to Port Townsend on the Olympic Peninsula to show them what a wonderful, endangered, used bookstore is like, it’s later than they think. William James Bookseller, which should be a public trust, is closing in March. Landlord issues over the years have complicated an already-difficult business.
— Mike Dillon