L to R: Edward Shanahan, Bookends owner; Kester Warlow-Harry, associate; Grey Angell, Bookends owner-to-be
Just a note to inform you that later this fall I will turn over ownership and operation of Bookends to Grey Angell, my assistant for the last six-plus years.
For nearly 15 years I have toiled in my two bookstore locations in downtown Florence during a period when the book was increasingly viewed as an endangered object. I want to thank you for your support of Bookends. I am pleased that the store will continue. Grey will be a great asset, both to Florence and to the book trade in the Valley.
Running a used bookstore is a privilege, not just because it enables the proprietor to feel a small sense of public service. More importantly, it enables friends and strangers to stop by, if only to chat, and exchange news and information about their lives, their reading tastes and opinions on all possible subjects.
A bookstore is an important outpost, providing an environment where, surrounded by books and ideas, we can speak and think freely.
Still, there comes a time when it is important to pursue other interests and activities while there is time to do so. I have concluded this is the right time for me to close the book on this chapter of my life.
After the first of the year, I might be found from time to time in a small space - not far from Bookends - at 30 North Maple St., Florence - surrounded by books, sitting at the computer doing some writing, or I might be out of town seeing the sights the larger world offers, or I might be hanging out at a municipal meeting in Northampton trying to figure whats going on and who needs to know about it.
Thanks for helping me to do what I was able to do with the bookstore over the years. I hope you will support Grey as enthusiastically as you did me during my stewardship of Bookends.
Best to you,