Circus of  Books, a longtime West Hollywood business that was once a vital institution for the city’s gay community, has closed for good after almost 60 years.

Circus of Books was one of several Santa Monica boulevard establishments I visited with my Husband, David, the night we met in May, 2007. We walked along to the bookstore after being introduced to each other at Hamburger Mary’s. After the bookstore, we continued along the boulevard to the Gold Coast Bar where we took our first photos together.

Would Circus of Books have survived if it updated its characterless decor and replenished the shelves with more desirable publications? I left the Bob Mizer Foundation bookstore in San Francisco last year wanting 100 things and spending 100 bucks. I’d probably have done that every few months if the Circus had more to offer.

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