So here, in a single image, is what we're losing. OK, fair enough: here is what, as a Canadian writer, I'm losing. Sheena took this shot of Our Hero at Chapters in downtown Montreal last November. Faithful readers will recall the VIA-Rail, Cross-Canada, Ocean-to-Ocean, Book-Tour Extravaganza? Montreal provided highlights, notably a fantastic
books-and-breakfast event organized by Paragraphe bookstore, the best in the city, and one of the best in the entire country. But also I signed books at Indigo and here at Chapters, on Ste. Catherine Street at Stanley. Now we learn (see link below) that this 35,000 square-foot store will close on October 4. And about that I feel sad. Obviously, if this had happened last year, I would have signed (and sold) none of the books pictured here. But also: check out the second photo. I apologize for not recalling the name of this Chapters staffer. But I tell you this: he was wonderful. He raced around the store collecting copies of 50 Canadians, and piled them neatly, and provided a pen . . . all with enthusiasm and great good cheer. For me, he provided a classic bricks-and-mortar moment. Some people knock the chains. But I, for one, feel sorry to say goodbye to this particular Chapters.