This is sad for local book buyers who'd like to buy from a shop where personal attention and individual recommendations still count for something - and even sadder for local authors! The manager of this little shop supported me all the way - gave me a beautiful window display when my books were published, together with signs pointing out that I was a local author, and then stocked signed copies of the books and recommended them to customers. It's difficult to get that kind of support from the big chains: they're tied into deals agreed by their head offices and if you're not a bestseller or a celebrity it's hard to get their interest.
I'm going to miss the shop terribly, and will cherish the photos I have, like this one, of their shop window displaying my first two books. I'll miss popping in to sign books, chat about how they're selling, and to buy books myself so that the relationship worked both ways. I know the loss of the shop is going to make a difference to my sales as well as to the community.
So if there's an independent bookshop in your area, don't wait till it's forced to close and then realise what you're missing! Support them, buy all your books there - browse around the shelves and enjoy the atmosphere of a real bookshop before it's too late.
Of course, we all get tempted by a bargain, but the massive discounting that's been going on since book prices stopped being fixed only puts more money in the pockets of the big supermarkets and chains. If you're a writer yourself, or if you're just a book lover who doesn't like the whole publishing industry being controlled by two giant retailers - there's only one way we can do our bit to try to change things. I only wish I'd done more, while I had the chance.