Have you ever read a book that you wish wouldn’t end? And when no sequel is announced, you’re heartbroken?
That story is becoming reality at Mendham Books, a staple of the community for 17 years.
Owner Tom Williams has announced the store will be closing in mid-March after the business and landlord of Kings Shopping Plaza could not come to terms on a new lease.
Known for its local feel and ability to serve the community’s reading needs through the various changes in media over the years, Mendham Books offered a selection for readers of all ages, and was a major part of the neighborhood’s story.
“We try and do our best,” for the customers, Williams said. “Right now we’re focusing on closing out the shop and putting on huge sales for customers to come and get some last items. And we’d love to say hello to everyone, too.”
Williams said one of his favorite parts of being in the community on a daily basis was watching the town – and its members – grow.
“We’d watch kids come in strollers, and see them buy board books,” Williams said. “Next thing you know, those same kids are in buying the latest teen fad, like Hunger Games or whatever the hot seller was.”
Mendham showed itself as a tight-knit community, Williams said, and became so close with some customers that he’s attended funerals.
The bookstore was also known for its ability to bring in local authors as well as celebrities for signings and readings, from Caroline Kennedy to countless athletes, both retired and active. When asked which, if any, were his favorite memories, Williams admitted there were too many to count.
“It would be like saying which of your children you liked better,” he said. “There were so many great memories.”
While the chapter of Mendham Books in the Kings Shopping Plaza winds to its final few sentences, the story may not be over. Williams said the business is keeping its email distribution list and accounts open.
“Right now we need to just catch our breath (with the closing),” he said. “But for future plans, we just don’t know yet.”
While this book is coming to an end, the story may not be over.