The mystery bookstore Book 'Em Mysteries will close at the end of April after 24 years. Owners Mary Riley and Barry Martin, who began first as business partners then got married, are retiring. Everything is already on sale in the store at 1118 Mission Street. A final book signing is scheduled for Sunday with authors Naomi Hirahara, Wendy Hornsby and Sue Ann Jaffarian. Cool handcuffs logo, and an interesting story from the store's early years via the Book 'Em website:
It began with a crime! BOOK'em's short history has its own unsolved mystery. We opened in October of 1990 a block and a half from our present location in South Pasadena. In the pre-dawn hours of August 9, 1991, ten months after we opened, an arsonist destroyed the building where our first shop was located. We lost everything and had to start over. Ten days short of three months, we reopened in our current fifteen hundred square foot location. A computerized inventory control system with point-of-sale tracking (we back-up data every night and take the disks off site) enabled us to settle with the insurance company expeditiously. To this day, the arsonist remains at large, though local authorities have strong suspicions who did it. Arson is the toughest crime to prosecute. Nice to say, that's behind us now.