When Taos’ Moby Dickens Bookshop closed the first week of July, customers were left with a going-out-of-business sign on a locked front door.
A staple of historic Bent Street for more than three decades, Moby Dickens was originally opened by Art and Susan Bachrach on property owned by Polly Raye.
In 2012 the Bachrachs sold the business to Jay and Carolyn Moore, who moved to Taos to run the store.
The Moores’ reasons for the closure, stated in a video interview for The Taos News, included competition from Amazon, fickle tourist book-buying patterns, and controversial increased parking meter costs on Bent Street.
Now, just six weeks later, the store is set to reopen with new owners. On Aug. 15, Noemi de Bodisco, owner of Op.Cit Books in Santa Fe and Tome on the Range in Las Vegas, will begin operating the shop as Op.Cit Taos.
Due to outstanding legal issues related to the previous owners, she cannot use the name Moby Dickens at this time, but hopes to be able to in the future.
De Bodisco has wanted to open a bookstore in Taos for many years, so when she heard the store had closed, she called Raye and signed a lease. Employees who used to work for the Bachrachs are being rehired.
Op.Cit Taos will have the same business model as Op.Cit in Santa Fe, and now Tome on the Range, which de Bodisco bought in 2013. The stock will include new, used, and remaindered books, special orders, and space for self-published authors to display and sell their books.
“But every store is different,” she told Pasatiempo. “Every store depends on the community. The first thing we’ll do is get feedback from the Taos community about what’s needed. We expect things to be very hectic for the first month, and on the first weekend we might be calculating sales by hand, but we really want to get the place open quickly so that people don’t think it’s been abandoned.”