Friday, March 13, 2009

bye bye david mirvish books

Closure of David Mirvish Books (1)
My first visit to David Mirvish Books was during some forgotten childhood trip to Toronto. If we were in town on a Sunday, Dad would drive down to Markham Street to pick up that day's New York Times—whether this provided an excuse to browse or that he couldn't purchase a copy at Sunnybrook Plaza is a question I can't answer. While he checked out the art bargains, I scurried off to the children's section as I did in most book stores. I don't remember anything specific about going there other than liking the airy feel of the place.

After moving here, I dropped by regularly to check out the deals. It was usually one of my first stops upon returning from A'burg at Christmas, to check out the year-end sale. I rarely left empty handed on those occasions, usually picking up a cheap Taschen book or three.

Closure of David Mirvish Books (3)
I figured something was up during their annual post-Christmas sale, when boxes of art magazines from the 1960s and 1970s were placed in the middle of the store for a dollar apiece. Combined with other old, worn-looking books, it felt more like a rummage sale than the usual markdowns of regular items. Shortly after the sale ended, the store announced its closure.

This is the second specialty bookstore on the block to shutter in the past year, following the closing of architecture-focused Ballenford Books. As long as The Beguiling keeps going, I'll still have an excuse to venture down to Markham Street for some quality book-browsing time.

No comments: