Katie Couric's Notebook: Bookstore Blues

With new reading gadgets like the Kindle and scores of online magazines, it's easy to imagine that old-fashioned paper books could some day disappear. But don't count them out just yet.

When Barnes and Noble announced plans to close one of their B. Dalton stores in Laredo, Texas, local residents flooded the place. School children even wrote letters to the company, begging it to reconsider.

You see, B. Dalton happens to be the only bookstore in Laredo, home to nearly a quarter-million people. Losing that store would make it the biggest U.S. city without one.

With literacy rates there around 50 percent, some say closing the last bookstore sends the wrong message...and the city's libraries can't handle more demand.

Barnes and Noble's does plan to open a new store in Laredo…but not for at least 18 months.

Until then, bibliophiles, take heart. The hue and cry proves that people are still buying and reading books…a classic pleasure that never gets old.

That's a page from my notebook.

I'm Katie Couric, CBS News.