Another independent bookstore shutting down: Oscar’s Art Books will close

Oscar’s Art Books, an independent bookstore that has been operating for 24 years in Vancouver is shutting down.

Chain bookstores were once thought to be the biggest threat to small, independent bookstores, but it appears the rise of e-books, not Chapters or Indigo is behind the demise of Oscar’s Art Books.

An official statement has been issued on the store’s Facebook page:

“It’s been a great run, being on Broadway for 24 years, what a show! We’ve always moved with the times but unfortunately the Internet has taken over. Our sincerest thanks to all the great customers and the Vancouver art community who have supported Oscar’s as an independent bookstore throughout the years – thank you for your love and loyalty.”

Ironically, it’s the Internet that is helping drive more people to Vancouver’s Public Libraries, which is now lending out ereaders.

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“As time goes on there are books that are starting to be available only to ebook format, and we also know that a chunk of the population now is choosing to read ebooks. So about 20-25 per cent of people are reading ebooks, about four per cent are only reading ebooks” says Christina de Castell, the Vancouver Public Library Director of Resources and Technology.

The rise in popularity of ebooks may indicate that a world without traditional books may not be hard to imagine, but it’s not happening anytime soon.

With files from Elaine Yong.