McNally Robinson Booksellers, Canada's largest independent chain, has entered bankruptcy protection.

McNally's Toronto store and one of its Winnipeg outlets will close this week. A second Winnipeg store and one in Saskatoon will stay open pending restructuring of the company. A related store in New York (McNally-Jackson Books) is unaffected.

The company cites bad timing -- expansion into Toronto and launch of a second, large Winnipeg store just in advance of a recession -- as well as competition form online book sales, deep discounting and e-book formats.

McNally is a class act. Here's hoping they'll salvage as much as possible.

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Yeah, too bad about McNally. They closed one in Calgary awhile ago, too, didn't they? I did a reading at one of the Winnipeg stores when my first book came out and the place was great. Guy Maddin was also reading so the place was packed.

Yes, let's hope McNally will regroup and come back strong.

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