THEY number less than a thousand and feared being left on the shelves forever by a surge in new tech and trends.

But it seems the long predicted death of the independent bookshop may be some way off yet as owners begin writing a new chapter all of their own.

Rather than standing around collecting dust organisers behind Independent Bookshop Week say innovative curation of high quality selections of beautiful books, bespoke events with famous writers and collaborations are attracting customers back and driving a resurgence.

A growing number of independent sellers claim they have weathered the triple storms of recession, online deep discounting and the rise of the e-reader by putting themselves at the heart of their communities, running author events, book groups, story time sessions and being on hand to offer personalised advice that beats online algorithms hands down.

Though only 987 independent bookshops are left across the UK - less than half the number there were in 1995 - bookseller's say there are signs of a revival.

Many are even reporting a rise in turnovers, some 26 new shops opened last year and sales of print books grew by 0.4 percent to £2.76bn according to industry figures last month. E-book sales, by contrast, fell by 16 percent in the same period.

Writers including Scottish crime author Ian Rankin, Scottish Poet Laureate CarolAnn Duffy and Jackie Kay, the Scot's Makar are backing a week long celebration of independent bookshops around the UK which started yesterday[Saturday] and includes author events, poetry tours, exhibitions and children's sessions.

"There are now lots of reasons to be optimistic," said Rosamund de la Hey, president of the Bookseller's Association, who also owns the Main Street Trading Company in Edinburgh. "The rise in e-books has settled and book shops are attracting people back.

"We get right in to the heart of the community with things like author events, kids storytime, knitting and book groups.

"Part of this week is about helping people rediscover the joy of the indie bookshop, reminding them of that special atmosphere and creating that little bit of pizazz.

"The joy of the independent bookshop is the serendipity of finding a book that you didn't know you wanted until you see it and know that you have to have it.

"You can often find books in an independent shop that you wouldn't find elsewhere and there is a human connection – we can talk to our customers about our books and make very personalised recommendations."

Publishers such as Penguin have increasingly marketed books as works of art republishing the works of Nancy Mitford late last year using colourful geometric patterns from Lourdes Sanchez on the covers.

Scots crime author Ian Rankin, who launched Independent Book Week at the Steyning Bookshop in West Sussex, said: "Independent book shops offer personal service - the bookseller becomes your friend as well as a person you can trust to point you towards new books and new writers. Book shops are key to the community, being places you can browse, hang out, chat, and muse.

"They are founts of knowledge and entertainment - and each and every high street, of city and village, would find them irreplaceable, which is why we readers should nurture them."

Chris McCosh, of Atkinson Pryce bookshop in Biggar – Scottish Independent Bookshop of the Year – will be hosting poets CarolAnne Duffy and Jackie Kay who taking part in a Shore-to-Shore tour later this week.

She admitted that though the bookshop was now doing well, several years ago she feared for its future. "The perfect storm for us started in about 2009 with the recession and then there was the e-book revolution and the Amazon wholesaling of books," she said. "It looked like a pincer movement.

"But we have re-invented ourselves with author events such as the Shore-to-Shore tour. That really helps to give us visibility."

The bookshop has also runs collaborative events, last year teaming up with the Biggar Little Cinema to put on a screening of To Kill A Mocking Bird to promote the launch of Go Set a Watchman – Harper Lee's original book which inspired the classic – and takes part in a range of local festivals.

"It's also about creating a really beautiful bookshop and our shop manager has just got better and better at buying books," she added. "We are thriving at the moment; we have weathered that storm and our turnover is up. I think there is a groundswell of book lovers who are rejecting the big online retailers and want to support independents."

Ian MacBeth, of Golden Hare books in Edinburgh's Stockbridge has also seen sales rise in the last 18 months.

And in the same way as vinyl has seen a revival, he claimed many were now turning back to printed books.

He said: "Apart from seeing books as stories or sources of information people have an appreciation of books as objects and I think publishers are increasingly acknowledging that."

Acknowledging that the independent market was still under a lot of pressure, he claimed the "village feel" in the affluent area helped create customer loyalty.

"We are the heart of our local community," he said.