This kid buys the store and a little over a year later it goes out of business? Sounds like he should have done his homework and not treated the store as a hobby. And only being open from 10-6 Tuesdays- Saturdays probably didn't help either. In a recession like this you have to utilize all 24 hours of the day to make it.
He took an opportunity that most people would have dreamed of and threw it down the toilet. Coming from the Little Old Bookstore in Whitter, Mr. Hernandez should have known better. That's a local bookstore that has actually expanded in these economic times.
Who suffers from this bookstore closing? Not Mr. Hernandez, who will drift into another job as so many other 20 somethings do. The people of Claremont, especially local historians and the elderly, who relied on Second Story Book's absolutely unique selections are the ones who will suffer.
I think Mr. Hernandez declined an interview not because he was "too disappointed" but because he might have been too embarrassed to answer some tough questions, like why didn't you ask for help, or advertise more ? If staffing was a problem, have seniors volunteer. Have 25 cent coffee night, stay open late, have a frequent book buyers card. Let the people of Claremont and the Inland Empire feel like they are a part of something REAL.
After reading this article from the Claremont Courier: http://www.claremont-courier.com/pages/Topsto...
it seems to me that Mr. Hernandez and his fiancee were trying to make a little nook just for themselves and people like them. When they stripped the walls of its "cacophonous mosaic of memories, passions and experiences" they stripped a bookstore of its soul. Mr. Hernandez's mother says (after the bookstore was wiped clean) that it “is starting to reflect Kyle and Stephani as a young couple and as individuals.”
Running a business should not be about reflecting yourselves. It should be about reflecting what the community wants and needs and give others a sense of history, place and belonging.
Please Claremont Library, invest in the stock of this store so your history won't be scattered to the wind.
Long after obsolete computers junk up our landfills and people move on to the newest and latest thing, there will still be the written word. Books are the original ipod, but better: they don't need to be plugged in. How's that for a Green revolution?