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Southside bookstore on the brink of closure may be saved by social media

"I think at a certain point we went numb. I can't believe this."

SAN ANTONIO — As a one-of-a-kind business on the south side prepares to close its doors for good, a remarkable social media post may end up saving it.

In a shop filled with books, the people surrounded by words are speechless.

"I can't even explain it," said Melissa Johnson. "I think at a certain point we went numb. I can't believe this."

Johnson and her husband opened Dead Tree Books three years ago on San Antonio's south side. For more than a decade, the duo had dreamed of opening up their own book store.

"There should be a resource here for the south side. Literacy is so important that kids know how to read," said Johnson.

For years, Johnson has helped students find books for school, and long-time readers rediscover their favorite reads. This week, they were heartbroken to announce that chapter was coming to an end. 

"There are bookstores on the north side of the city, but this is basically it for this side of town," said Johnson.

On Twitter, Dead Tree Books announced plans to close, followed by a plea. They asked people to buy just one book to help them pay an overdue rent.

As retweets poured in, so did the people.

New customers from the south side, like Paula Briseno, said it is important to support local businesses.

"I've always passed by here, but my sister saw this on Twitter and we decided to come," she explained.

Folks on the north side of town have come to the shop too. On Twitter, people from out-of-state said they showed support by placing orders online.

"I think the only reason we weren't breaking down in tears was we were too busy," said Johnson. "We had people here from when we opened to when we closed."

As she and her husband box up products to ship out, they feel optimistic.

"Maybe we will be able to stay where we are," said Johnson.

They aren't sure how this story ends, but they know it's not over just yet.

Dead Tree Books is located at 5645 S. Flores St. #105

You can also purchase books from their Amazon store