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Photo Essay: Farewell to Reader’s Choice after three decades

“Our mission is to provide each reader with the best in literature by minority authors. We believe that reading is a fundamental source of knowledge, power, and comfort. Every customer is afforded personalized service to ensure the right book for the right person at the right time.” – Reader’s Choice Bookstore

After nearly three decades, the only remaining African-American owned bookstore in Wisconsin closed on July 8 with the retirement of Carla Allison and her husband Robert.

Located at 1950 N. King Drive, the bookstore was well known for its vast offering of published works by African-American authors, covering a wide spectrum of subjects. The location was also used for book fairs, poetry sessions, community dialogues, and readings from acclaimed authors.

These images are from the closing event, that brought community members and long-time bookstore supports who shared personal stories about how Allison introduced them to books, and years later, recommended reading for their own children.

About The Author

Lee Matz

Former Creative Director and Photojournalist for the Milwaukee Business Journal, Lee brings his years of international experience as a foreign correspondent in Asia and Europe, with a background in publishing, advertising, and design, to the Milwaukee Independent. His list of awards include two consecutive top honors from the Milwaukee Press Club.

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