Movings and Closings

The New Yorker writes about Farrar, Straus & Giroux’s impending move to new quarters on 18 West 18th Street:

Joy Isenberg, who has worked at Farrar, Straus & Giroux for

thirty-eight years, says that one of the things she is most looking

forward to when the company moves this week out of its storied offices,

at 19 Union Square West, is the prospect of hot running water in the

ladies’ room. “You had to put your own hot-water tank in, and that was

not something that was in the F.S.G. budget,” Isenberg, who is a senior

vice-president and director of operations at the company, explained the

other day. “The money went into the books, not into painting the

walls.” Elaine Kramer, the company’s longest-serving employee, who was

hired in the accounts department in 1952, said that, while the

employees were happy about the prospect of improved amenities—there

will be a pantry, so for the first time coffee will be made in-house,

rather than brought in—many of the writers, over the years, had been

attached to the house’s primitive living conditions. “Isaac Singer—he

liked it that way,” Kramer said.

Yes but, how shall I put it this way – Singer died seventeen years ago. A lot has changed since then, and the lack of running hot water isn’t exactly charming, you know?

Unfortunately, High Crimes Mystery Bookshop in Boulder won’t get the benefit of a move as it’s shutting its doors on March 15:

The decision did not come easy to Cynthia Nye, who started High

Crimes in 2000 after purchasing its predecessor and her former

employer, Rue Morgue.

“I think it’s been slowly building over the last six months,” she said.

In the uncertain economic times, foot traffic has diminished and

customers seem to be buying fewer books, she said. And in a business

where many independent bookstores operate close to the bone, High

Crimes just couldn’t withstand the drops, she said.

“You get two or three bad months and that’s all you can take,” she said.

Similar bad news awaits Dutton’s in Brentwood, which will close on April 30. Owner Doug Dutton sent out a statement about the move, which comes less than a year after the Beverly Hills store closed:

As our regular customers and friends well know, the past year for

the store has been one of upheaval and turmoil. Hard on the heels of

the closure of the Dutton’s Beverly Hills location came word that the

Brentwood property had changed ownership, and the new owner, Charles T.

Munger, announced plans to redevelop the property. The multiple

uncertainties of the bookstore’s future, combined with the encumbrances

associated with the closure of the Beverly Hills store have crippled

the store’s ability to provide the kind of immediate service and depth

of inventory that our customers have come to rightly expect.

It is no secret that the store today is a shadow of its former self.

There is a possibility of new quarters, but Dutton says that option won’t be explored for a while yet.