When the news got out a few weeks ago that Chester County Book & Music Company was closing its doors, many readers were dismayed. But it might not be the last chapter for the West Chester store, one of the rare remaining independent bookstores.

Kathy Simoneaux, owner of the store said she is exploring other locations to house her 30-year old business.

Last year, when she knew closing her doors might become a reality, she looked at another space but thought it would be difficult to move.

But the public support was hard to ignore.

"The outpouring of support and customer demand to keep the store open was overwhelming." she said. Soon she had a change of heart. "I want to stay."

Now the challenge is to find a suitable and smaller location close to the store's current home.

"Book stores draw customers within a three-mile radius," Simoneaux said, noting she was open to many options, including downtown West Chester, if she found the right space.

The pluses of her store have been long-term employees and good arrangments with publishers, who have always been quick to arrange authors and book events at independent bookstores.

But Chester County Book & Music Company is not the only local bookstore fighting the trends of Internet shopping and a tough economy. Readers Forum in Wayne is also fighting to stay open.

"We are trying to work through a problematic time and continue to serve our customers," said Ed Luoma co-owner of Readers Forum. It didn't help when a magazine mistakingly reported its demise.

Meanwhile, what will Kathy Simoneaux do if she can't find another home for her book store?

"Find another job," she said, smiling. "I am too young to be retired."