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Local author Kate Toon saves The Bookshop at Umina from closure

Kate Toon 2 mins read
Kate Toon in The Bookshop at Umina

The Bookshop at Umina on the NSW Central Coast has been saved from imminent closure, thanks to being purchased by locally-based author and entrepreneur, Kate Toon.


A regular in the shop and author of books including Six Figures in School Hours (2023) and Six Figures While You Sleep (July 2024), Kate has a reputation for building communities and thriving businesses, and was heartbroken at the thought of losing the much-loved local bookshop. 


When current owner Julie Chessman shared the news that the shop was going to close, Kate decided to take action. 


“When I saw Julie’s announcement about closing The Bookshop at Umina, my first thought was perhaps I could invest and support her to continue. But then the opportunity to buy the shop came up and I grabbed it with both hands. It’s a dream come true for me as a lifelong bookshop fanatic,” says Kate.


Julie purchased the bookshop in 2020, and has kept it alive throughout the pandemic, her own health challenges and more. She will continue to work in the shop and support Kate with the ownership transition:  


“This bookshop is a special place for so many people. It’s not just about the books, it’s about connection and community. It would have been heart-wrenching to have to close it, so I’m thrilled Kate has come on board. She has the energy, intentions, enthusiasm and business skills to make a real success of it, and I look forward to working alongside her and keeping this special place alive and thriving,” says Julie. 


Kate’s vision for The Bookshop at Umina is to build on its established presence, creating a community hub offering events, writing classes, author talks, mums and bub sessions and affordable events for seniors and low-income earners. 


“I’m excited to bring my business and marketing skills to the bookshop, as well as drawing on my connections in the publishing industry to bring authors and speakers to wonderful Umina.


“Julie and Michaela will be staying on to help me with the bookshop and keep things business as usual. First up I’ll be focusing on a rebrand and some other new initiatives underway. This is a family affair – I’ll be getting my partner and my teenage son involved," says Kate. 


The Bookshop at Umina is the only independently-owned boutique bookshop on the Central Coast peninsula, and is the cultural heart of the Umina coastal community. 


Kate is a well-known author, speaker and podcaster, named Australia’s Most Influential Small Business Woman, one of Australia’s Top 50 Small Business Leaders, and Businesswoman of the Year and Training & Education Provider of the Year at the national My Business Awards.


She’s proud to run her thriving digital marketing and education business from her ‘Toon Cave’ backyard shed in Umina, and has helped tens of thousands of businesses around Australia and the world through her courses, communities, resources, events, podcasts and books. 


Find out more at:


Contact details:

Erin Huckle 

0432 213 506


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