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Westwood's Borders takes a bow

January 3, 2011 |  1:36 pm

Borders_mccartney In better days, the Borders bookstore in Westwood  hosted book signings for photographer Annie Leibovitz, actor-turned-producer Henry Winkler and musician Sir Paul McCartney. But now, the countdown to its closing is on.

The Borders Books and Music located at 1360 Westwood Blvd. is scheduled to close on Friday or when the stock is cleared from shelves, whichever comes first.

Gendy Alimurung checked in with the store for the L.A. Weekly. Camilla Ostrin, who's been on the bookstore staff for 12 years, isn't sure what comes next, she tells Alimurung.

"Most of us are introverted and bookish, which only adds to the problem," she says.

Partly, she can't make definitive plans. The company is giving them severance pay, but employees have not yet been told exactly when their employment ends. Liquidation will continue until all the merchandise is gone, and when that finally happens is anyone's guess.

The protracted demise is helping Ostrin gradually acclimate to her new reality, at least. Empty bookshelves are the saddest part. She's used to seeing them full. Customers likely would agree; they don't seem to understand that the store isn't being restocked, that the new Obama calendars aren't coming in, or that once the Paperchase journals are gone, they're gone.

When Borders in Westwood closes, mystery lovers, at least, will still be able to find books in the neighborhood. The Mystery Bookstore is just a half-mile away, at 1036-C Broxton Ave.

-- Carolyn Kellogg

Photo: In 2005, rock legend Paul McCartney read his book "High in the Clouds" to children at the Borders in Westwood. Credit: Ken Hively / Los Angeles Times