Located in the shadow of Griffith Park and its iconic Observatory and nestled on Vermont Avenue—one of LA’s few walkable streets—Skylight Books has been a favorite of the historic LA neighborhood of Los Feliz since ’96. Over the years various indie shops, diners, and bistros have come and gone. Even one of LA’s most beloved acting schools once resided next door. Name an actor and, chances are, at some point in their humble beginnings they loitered the aisles of Skylight between classes and smokes; or barely escaped food poisoning at the old hole-in-the-wall Japanese joint formerly two doors down; caught an art house flick at the neighborhood theater; or spent a boozy late night lounging at the legendary Dresden down the block. But as the area has evolved into trendier fare such as Tacos Tu Madre and succulents shops, it has managed to keep a rare, authentic quaintness.
Besides the crepes at Figaro, a constant for locals has been to kill an afternoon perusing the aisles of this beloved bookshop—with its curated selection of literary and nonfiction, graphic novels, zines, art, film and photography books, and one of the best children’s sections. Or to check out one of the many live readings they’ve hosted with big name authors, local favorites, and debuts. And, of course, to harass the knowledgeable staff for favorite book recs. As did we. For you. Below, check out their list of current must-reads and don’t forget to support your local bookshops. We need them as much as they need us.
KLARA AND THE SUN
by Kazuo Ishiguro
“Ishiguro’s latest novel takes place in the near future and is told from the point of view of an Artificial Friend – an A.I. created to bring companionship to young people who spend most of their life being taught and entertained on their “oblong”. A beautifully written and suspenseful novel about connection and what makes one ‘human’.”
A SWIM IN A POND IN THE RAIN
by George Saunders
“It says it right on the cover, ‘in which four Russians give a master class on writing, reading, and life.’ The real master though is Saunders who entertains us into becoming better writers and readers and, yes, life livers. This book will not only invigorate your creativity but also make you a better person.”
INTERIOR CHINATOWN: A NOVEL
by Charles Yu
TAROT + ASTROLOGY
by Jessica Hundley
“Two books from Taschen’s brand new Library of Esoterica series. Two gorgeous books that you will want on your coffee table. Lavishly illustrated, these informative and useful books will educate the reader on the history of all aspects of Tarot and Astrology—›the history, theory, artwork, and major teachers and searchers, not to mention learning to divine and read the symbols and meanings of the cards and stars!”
1818 NORTH VERMONT AVE., LOS ANGELES