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from The LA Times

Bookstore of the week: Small World Books in Venice


Mary Goodfader moved her bookstore to the Venice Boardwalk in 1976 after seven years in Marina del Rey. When she and her husband Robert found the space that now holds Small World Books and the Sidewalk Cafe, the building was empty, she says, covered with graffiti like “stop bombing in Cambodia.” They bought the building and divided responsibilities: She ran the bookstore and Robert ran the cafe along the boardwalk, which faces the sea. The restaurant is “pretty much the reason the bookstore can exist,” Goodfader says. “As long as people want to buy hamburgers, I’ll keep it going.”

Venice Beach is home to some famous characters, apart from those available on the postcards for sale. Those who’ve stopped in at the store include actors John Cleese and Paul Giamatti, filmmaker Tony Bill, musician Andy Summers and artists Ed Ruscha and Robert Graham. Writer James Frey was “a great friend of the store,” says Mary Goodfader. “We liked him a lot.” He did two signings there; these days, the store rarely hosts book signings.

[ click to read full piece at The LA Times ]

Posted on February 11, 2011 by Editor

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