Wednesday was the final day of book sales for the Book Revue, the iconic Huntington Village store that was a destination for 44 years.
Owner Richard Klein announced Wednesday evening that the store would reopen Friday and would give away books free of charge.
“We have tried to contact charities and organizations to come and take books, but without success, so if any of you good people know of any organizations that might be able to use free books, please feel free to contact them,” his notice read.
The store was busy Wednesday, with shoppers thumbing through stacks and shelves of books. A number of shelves were thinned out or empty but plenty of books, from self help to military history to novels, cookbooks, crime and mystery selections, and children’s items remained at mid-day. It drew people from around Long Island who would have dinner and then stop in the store for a book or two.
Celebrity authors over the years ranged from reality TV star Nicole “Snooki” Polizzi, to astronaut Buzz Aldrin, actor Dick Van Dyke, President Bill Clinton, Sean Hannity, Nelson Demille and hundreds more.
Klein said he was “surprisingly good” about the decision to shut down, which came after a rent dispute with the building’s landlord, who Klein said wanted to double the monthly rent. He said he planned to spend free time reading books.
Caught up in the shutdown of the Covid-19 epidemic, the store was unable to bring in the many celebrities and authors who made guest appearances over the years. It also hosted events such as reading groups and programs to encourage people to become authors.
He is working with store employee Mallory Braun on a plan to find another downtown location to open another bookstore.