Ray Bradbury dies: Glendale bookstore owners remember their author friend

Ray Bradbury

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Decorated with a Fahrenheit 451 fire fighter hat along with other memorabilia, the Bradbury shelf has stood out among the bookshelves for quite some time.

Ray Bradbury

Ashley Myers-Turner/KPCC

At the enterance of Mystery & Imagination Bookstore, is a tribute to Ray Bradbury, with a typewriter donated by friend and fan, John King.

Ray Bradbury

Ashley Myers-Turner/KPCC

Mystery & Imagination Bookstore at the outset of their relationship with Bradbury.

Ray Bradbury

Ashley Myers-Turner/KPCC

Together in Mystery & Imagination Bookstore in Glendale, CA, owners Malcolm and Christine Bell remember their friend, Ray Bradbury, and how he touched both their personal life as well as the world around them.

Ray Bradbury

Ashley Myers-Turner/KPCC

This lucky "The Cat's Pajamas" poster, featuring Bradbury's own art, remains intact, but many of the Bradbury posters in the bookstore have been torn down by fans eager to take home a souvenir during book signings.

Ray Bradbury

Ashley Myers-Turner/KPCC

The Bells keep this photo close, as it is the last photo of the "Three Legends" together. Ray Harryhausen, Ray Bradbury, and Forrest "Mr. Science Fiction" Ackerman (from left to right) were childhood friends who had their last signing together at the Mystery & Imagination Bookstore.

Ray Bradbury

Ashley Myers-Turner/KPCC

In honor of his birthday, Bradbury would have a book signing at the Mystery & Imagination bookstore. Porto's Restaurant across the street started to cater the birthday cakes, decorating them with Bradbury book covers.

Ray Bradbury

Ashley Myers-Turner/KPCC

The Bell's have a first edition copy of Fahrenheit 451 which was ordered by a customer yesterday.

Ray Bradbury

Ashley Myers-Turner/KPCC

At the entrance of Mystery & Imagination Bookstore,is a tribute to Ray Bradbury, with a typewriter donated by friend and fan, John King.

Ray Bradbury

Ashley Myers-Turner/KPCC

Bradbury signed and drew a dinosaur on the Bookstore signature wall.


There’s a pall over an independent bookstore in Glendale as the couple who owns it mourns the loss of close friend and famed author Ray Bradbury.

He died in Los Angeles on Tuesday night. He was 91.

Christine Bell, co-owner of the Mystery and Imagination Bookshop, said some readers used to stop in their tracks when they saw Bradbury’s books in the store window.

“One day I heard a screeching of tires and went to look to see if everyone was okay," Bell recalled. "It was simply a man who had put on his brakes because he saw 'Bradbury Speaks' and ran in the door to see if Ray Bradbury was here — that is how he affects people.”

Bell said Bradbury visited the shop often for book signings and birthday parties — his own, in the company of many fans.

The author of more than 300 science fiction and fantasy books called West L.A. home and lived in Los Angeles most of his life.

John King is an accountant from Glendale who says he started out as merely a fan of Bradbury’s. But after a chance meeting at the Mystery and Imagination Bookshop, they became good friends.

“His philosophy was [that] when he was a young boy, pestering famous people for their autographs, they would be so generous to him," said King. "He would never refuse anybody an autograph. An old joke is that an unsigned Bradbury book is rarer than a signed Bradbury book."

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