To the Editor:

Thank you from the Bank Street Book Nook.

In case you don't know, Vanessa and I bought the Book Nook last year. We celebrated our one-year anniversary Feb. 21.

When we bought the store, we had no experience in retail and our only background with books was the time we spent buying them.

Despite the lack of experience, we saw it as a labor of love, not profit. We only hoped to break even.

For us, it was an opportunity to engage in a business that feeds the soul. After a year of ups and downs, plenty of sweat but no tears or blood, we still feel that way.

We know what we are up against.

I'll admit that a couple of years ago I went to the bookstore looking for a title, which they did not have. The employee, who we continue to employ, cheerily asked me if she could order it for me. I creased my brow and shook my head muttering, "no, thanks," and slinked out the door.

I thought, "Why would I have them order the book when I can get it from Amazon?" which is exactly what I did.

I gave no further thought to it until I saw the store was closing. I understand now what I failed to then; the difference between value and price. A book has a price; a bookstore has value.

We sell more than books at the Book Nook. We provide a place to browse, pick them up, get a feel for them; we provide a place to talk about books, make suggestions, research what you may like; we are a welcoming light after dinner or as you come blinking out of the movie theater.

If we simply sold books, we could never compete with Amazon. We provide a place in our town and in our world for you, our readers and customers.

Your support, especially over the Christmas holiday, has reaffirmed our commitment to the store.

Thank you, and please continue to support us and the other stores downtown.

And when we don't have the book you want, think about letting us order it for you. We can't match Amazon, but if you've stepped foot in our store, we've already provided something that Amazon cannot.

David and

Vanessa Gronbach

Bank Street Book Nook

New Milford