Considering how sick I feel about this, I can’t even image what Tom Williams is going through.
His basement-level bookstore on 17th Ave S. E. in Calgary was caught in the deluge that hit the city recently. Gone in a matter of hours was his collection of 200,000 rare, second-hand books and ephemera, buried under a river of dirty water and mud.
As the Calgary Sun put it “For Williams, 77, his life’s work was gone in a flash.” Because the books were used, Williams couldn’t begin to estimate the worth of his collection, which was uninsured.
Here’s a photo I took of the store sign several winters back. As I noted in the Literary Tourist comment section for the place, was just the kind of used bookstore I love – big, slightly disheveled, and filled with interesting titles from a wide range of different publishers, British, Canadian and American.
What a blow.