We have been coming to Venice for some part of the winter since 2006. There have been a lot of changes in the area over that time. 2006 was near the beginning of the big development crash. Huge water front, luxury condos were being built but then stood empty. Sprawling developments were laid out in land, but then construction was stalled. Brand new shopping plazas stood mostly empty, but the new roads to reach them continued to be built.
The lovely downtown of Venice has suffered from a constant turn over of smaller shops but a few mainstays have managed to hang in there and the main street always seems to be busy, at least with window shoppers.
In 2006, there were two small, indie bookstores in down town. One was gone in 2007 and the other was gone in 2012. I have nothing in particular against the big chain bookstores and nothing against Amazon at all, but I sure do miss those little shops. I feel the loss of some sacred spaces.
Here is a Burlington, Vermont, book shop. I can never, ever resist going inside if I am anywhere near there.