FRANKLIN, Tenn. (WKRN) — The owners of a Franklin bookstore say a “miracle” is getting them through the COVID-19 pandemic. After weeks of praying, the Tomlins said a best-selling, local author is saving their store Landmark Booksellers.
Their relationship with author Karen Kingsbury unfolded several years ago, when Kingsbury visited the bookstore off of the square and was inspired to write her best-selling novel “The Bridge.”
“Her editor called us about 4 or 5 months later and said Karen’s next book is set in your bookstore and you and your wife are the two main characters,” co-owner Joel Tomlin told News 2.
Not long after, A Hallmark movie was made based off of the book.
While it’s drummed up business at the quaint bookstore for years, the Tomlins’ are now calling Kingsbury their “guardian angel.”
“She realized we needed help and came to our aid,” the couple explained.
Kingsbury went to Facebook asking her followers to help save Landmark Booksellers. She offered fans pre-sale, signed additions of her new book through the small store online and sales took off.
“It has resulted in the sale of what’s going to be 5,000 books before it’s over with and that’s in a weeks time, week to ten days time. Which is absolutely amazing. Before, we were literally praying God what do we do? So it was a miracle that this happened, no question about it,” said the Tomlins.
They say 85 percent of their business went away overnight amid the pandemic. It’s a story that’s all too familiar. In Kingsbury’s novel, the bookstore nearly goes under, but the community saves it.