Inside the Australian and New Zealand book industry

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New owner for Mary Martin Southgate

Medical researcher Jaye Chin-Dusting has purchased Mary Martin Bookshop in Southgate, Melbourne, from the previous owners Graham and Margaret Brookes, who have decided to retire after running the business for 27 years.

Chin-Dusting told Books+Publishing she will be working in the store ‘as much as possible’. ‘It’s a steep learning curve but I am enjoying it immensely, from just chatting to those walking through the front door, to studying all the blurbs on the new releases and cherry-picking books to stock, through to conceptualising a new narrative for the old girl—and by this I mean Mary Martin, the store.’

Chin-Dusting, who is a research professor at Monash University and the president of the High Blood Pressure Research Council of Australia, said that all academics ‘secretly dream of one of two things—to own a winery or a bookstore’. ‘As I don’t drink, it was the bookstore,’ she said.

‘This is motivated at the very selfish level of wanting to surround myself with words in that best tangible form possible, the book, but also having a vision of wanting to be part of the cultural fabric, and indeed heart, of Melbourne. The iconic Mary Martin Bookshop located in Southgate at the Art Precinct is perfectly placed for that,’ said Chin-Dusting.

Chin-Dusting took over management on 16 November and has retained the store’s staff. The store will celebrate the change of ownership with an event on 4 December, with a ‘come dressed as your favourite character’ theme, carols and a 20%-off storewide sale.


Category: Local news