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2008 04 01
… but This Ain’t the Rosedale Library to Reopen in Kensington Market

In the city of stories, every page spills a new narrative. And so: After twenty-nine years in business, and after 22 years at its Church Street location, storied independent bookseller This Ain't the Rosedale Library is moving to Toronto's Kensington Market. The bookstore will continue operating at its current location until late May, while the new location, at 86 Nassau Street in the heart of the Market, will open in early May. To facilitate the move, This Ain't is offering 30% off regularly priced hardcovers and half price on their stock of bargain books.

This Ain't's move is stimulated, reportedly, by economic factors and also by partner Dan Bazuin's desire to step back and focus on gallery and literary events. BlogTO reports that partner Charles Huisken will run the new store alongside his son. Huisken told the National Post about his optimism that the new Kensington Market location will bring new life to the store.

As someone with close ties to Kensington Market, I can hardly wait for the new location to open. It is easy to sympathize with the tears of This Ain't's Church Street regulars grieving the loss of their neighbourhood independent, but Kensington Market will welcome the store with equal warmth. Currently Kensington Market is underserviced in terms of books: locals must travel up to Harbord to visit stalwarts such as the Toronto Women's Bookstore or Ten Editions at 698 Spadina, or all the way to Bloor to browse at David Mirvish Books or BMV (471 Bloor).

For those unfamiliar with This Ain't, the store specializes in small press, counterculture and independent fiction, and also sells large press titles and a good stock of remaindered books. Befitting its Church Street location, This Ain't also offers the city's best selection of LBGT titles. These specialities will be retained at the new location, with an added focus on rare books as well. I am curious how Kensington Market will add to This Aint's flavours. My personal preference would be to see a Toronto literature section, highlighting novels and poetry depicting Kensington Market itself.

[Amy Lavender Harris is the author of Imagining Toronto, forthcoming in 2008 from Mansfield Press. She writes regularly about Toronto literature and the imaginative qualities of cities.]

[email this story] Posted by Amy Lavender Harris on 04/01 at 10:10 AM

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