Robert J. Sawyer

Hugo and Nebula Award-Winning Science Fiction Writer

Calgary McNally Robinson closing

by Rob - March 13th, 2008.
Filed under: Bookselling.

The great downtown Calgary bookstore McNally Robinson, on the open-air mall Stephen Avenue Walk, is closing on August 1, 2008.

Calgary’s economy is booming — wages are high, rents are higher — and a small-margins business like bookselling can’t make a go of it in such a prime downtown location.

I’m really sad about this. Not only was I very fond of the staff — who had always treated me extremely well — but it was a truly beautiful bookstore: three storeys, with a lovely spiral staircase, a restaurant, and a great, spacious patio on which many a wonderful book launch had been held (including the one for Danita Maslan’s Rogue Harvest, published under my Robert J. Sawyer Books imprint). I have wonderful memories of attending events at the store — my own, and those of other authors — and of just browsing or of chatting with the knowledgeable staff. It’s a real loss.

(The McNally Robinson chain is doing fine, with another store opening in two weeks in Winnipeg, and one opening in Toronto 13 months from now. The Calgary branch was not one of those that contributes to the Locus bestsellers list.)

Today’s Calgary Herald has more.

The Robert J. Sawyer Web Site

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