Malibu's Bank of Books announced its closure in an email to supporters and customers Monday. The independent bookstore, which opened in July 2012, will close its doors in April.
"I have always thought of Bank of Books Malibu, with our 1200 feet of retail space in a town of just 13,000 souls, as 'the little bookstore that could,'" wrote owner Clarey Rudd. "But, unfortunately, our time here is coming to an end."
Although Malibu is known for its wealthy residents, they haven't been supporting local bookstores lately. In 2014, Diesel Books closed its Malibu outpost, citing slow sales and high rent.
Rudd made a point of saying that Bank of Books' landlord, Zan Marquis, has been supportive of the store. The problem, he explained, is that "our sales have stagnated, and it has become apparent that it is in the best interest of both Bank of Books and Marquis Properties for this location to close."
The Rudd family owns and operates two bookstores in Ventura, Abednego Book Shoppe and Bank of Books, plus warehouses with an estimated 2 million more books. They sell new and used books.
For the remainder of its days, Bank of Books in Malibu will be discounting its stock; everything in the store has been marked down 20%, and additional books will continue to be added to the inventory. Events at the store -- a storytime on Saturday, plus readings, poetry and music events, will continue through April.
Rudd, who runs the business with his family, is a cancer survivor whose larynx was removed about five years ago. "I can't answer the phone. But I love helping people," he told The Times during Christmas season in 2012, scribbling on a notepad. "Literature, as you know, helps people with their problem. They escape with novels. They learn about life, the world."