Portrait of a Bookstore

Located in Tujunga Village, a one block community of little boutiques, eateries, clothing stores, theatre, and spas, Portrait of a Bookstore has been sharing its space for the last seven years with the Aroma Coffee & Tea Co. Based on the ever present crowd of patrons frequenting the establishments daily, the lure of the printed word and a fresh cup of coffee prove to be a winning combination.

The bookstore has three connected spaces; the two that are indoors hold many shelves of books with subjects ranging from literary fiction to non-fiction ("a little bit of everything," according to Julie.) However, one room boasts a lovely fireplace used during the winter, as well as very comfortable chairs and tables for customers to sit and enjoy the atmosphere with friends or a good book. The other room is where Julie displays antiques for sale, (i.e: tea sets, old type writers, etc.,) items she brings back from England. In addition, journals, gifts, and cards are also sold. The book store also has a beautiful backyard patio with a water fountain and geranium red umbrellas.

When asked what kind of people come into the book store, Julie Zerneck replied, "a lot of writers and artists." As far as the employees, Julie acted quite the proud mama, implying the family vibe goes beyond her nuclear unit. She praised her "extraordinary staff of eight people who know the book store very well. They will literally spend hours helping a customer find what they need." She told me about how their buyer, Beth Anderson, has been with them for ten years. She excitedly told me about how her manager, Lucia Silva, who, in addition to organizing weekly/monthly author events and readings, also runs an award winning independent literary web site, www.firstcutbooks.com, where she gives book reviews and features numerous titles.

With such love, positivity, and emotional support already present in the book store, it's no wonder there are always so many people gathering there, soaking up some of that great energy while contributing some of their own.

Portrait of a Bookstore
4360 Tujunga Ave.
Studio City, CA
818- 769-3853

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© Melt Magazine 2003 


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