By Alicia Neaves
MIDLAND - A Midland gem that's been a part of the community for more than 40 years is set to close its doors in March but loyal customers and employees of Miz B's Books are fighting to keep their doors open.
Employees and customers of Miz B's Books in Midland are praying for a Christmas miracle after they got word that the business will be closing, meaning 2.7 million books will need a new home come March.
"To be able to come in and bring your children to read books, that's so much better than playing video games," Customer, Lisa Easley-Link, said.
"It's still that touch, that feel, that smell of a book. You can't get that off an E-reader and a lot of people are coming back to the books," Miz B's Employee, Mona Free, said.
It's a Midland gem that's served West Texas for more than 40 years. If you type "used books midland" in Google, Miz B's is the first to pop up.
"They just stand there and gasp, 'There's so many books,' and I say, 'Yeah! What can I help you find today?'" Free said.
After their property was sold just a few weeks ago, the packing boxes are out. But hopes are still high for another vacant building to call home.
"I've had two or three customers cry. It breaks my heart. It breaks my heart to lose a diamond," Free said.
Miz B's has seen customers grow. Employees say they very seldom have a visitor leave without a book. Even those who don't live in Midland/ Odessa have made Miz B's a travel destination as it's the only used book store from El Paso to Dallas.
"There's this corner, they call it the 'kids corner'. They have lots of toys and stuff like that. The kids just beeline for that corner," Miz B's Customer, Kristen Vazquez, said.
Most importantly, customers say, these books are affordable for students and families who need them.
"They have old and rare books and books that I'll never see again. So that's why I like coming here," Easley-Link said.
"Some people just come in here to sit, relax and get out of the rat race. They just find a chair, sit down and read," Free said.