It appears a lot more people in the Sault are picking up a book to bide their time throughout the pandemic.

At least one independent book store is doing so well from a sales standpoint, and that its actually seen an increase throughout 2020.

"We have our regular customers, but during COVID, a lot of new people for us," said Bob Berry, co-owner of the Skeleton Key Used Book Store.

"We're even getting a lot more business from people in the east end of the city, which was never really the case since we're such a small, west-end store."

Berry said the pandemic has unquestionably been the main reason for that increase, which was a surprise to him at first.

Even now, as the province is locked down in the midst of what is one of the slowest months of the year for a retail store, Berry said sales are about the same as any regular January.

"We've even noticed that we're getting a lot more donations than we would have before," he said.

"It's a blessing because we sell most of our books for three dollars and that's because we get donations."

The Sault Public Library said it too is noticing a bit of a boom in book sign outs, despite the library physically being closed.

"We have people getting books, magazines, lots of different services, we're really really busy, we're glad to see it, that's what we're here for," said Janelle Martin, part of the children’s department at the library.

Martin said the library has transitioned many of its in-person activities to an online setting, such as its story times.

"So they can go to our calendar, they can click on the link and enjoy a story time with their child," she said.

"We're also offering craft time, as well as a link and puppet place, so that's something that we normally had great attendance here for and we know that they're missing it."

The library is now offering free access to Ancestry.com, as well as its e-book collection for those with a library card.