Canberra’s beloved romance bookshop to close its doors in August, but it’s business as usual online.
Earlier today, readers on the mailing list for Intrigue, The Romance Bookstore mailing list would have received an email from the lovely Margaret Bell announcing that she will not be renewing the lease on the shop premises at Garema Centre. She cites general challenges in the retail market and the popularity of ebooks as contributing factors to the decision.
Doors will shut on Saturday, August 4.
Here’s an excerpt from the announcement:
This is the most difficult email I’ve ever sent. We’ve loved running the store and after eight years, are sad to see it end; however- on the up-side – it will give us the opportunity to devote more time and concentration to expanding and improving our e-commerce website and looking after our customers. The website is operating well and we are gradually working through the store shelves, to ensure that every book in the store will be available on the website; customers will be able to browse our entire stock at their own convenience.
According to Margaret, book prices should come down with the decrease in operating costs and, as a result, Intrigue will no longer be accepting secondhand stock for credit. Existing secondhand stock is now 35% off.
She’s also selling off some store furniture and decor from next month onward. If you’ve ever stepped foot in the shop you’ll know that there are some very pretty things to be had. I wish I lived closer!
While I’m glad that Intrigue continues to be viable as an online shop, I’m so saddened by the news that we’re going to lose a retail shop dedicated to romance books. There’s something just lovely about knowing there’s a place where you’re sure to find a book you’ll want to take home with you.
We wish Margaret all the best as her business moves to this next phase, and hope that readers continue to support Intrigue. The Australian romance reading community wouldn’t be the same without local retailers and publishers of romance fiction.