Pictured: Timbre Books owner Megan Murai. Photo by Ivor Davis


by Ivor Davis

Timbre Books 
1924 E. Main St., Ventura

Bibliophiles rejoice! Midtown Ventura is now home to a new, independently owned bookstore. Not a secondhand bookstore — although everyone loves Clarey Rudd’s marvelous Bank of Books. Timbre is a spanking-new, airy but cozy hangout that stocks all the newest books aimed at everyone from kids to the Social Security set. You can even order the new autobiography, Time Between; My Life as a Byrd, Burrito Brother and Beyond by Ventura County’s rock music legend Chris Hillman — out this month with rave reviews.

The spiffy Timbre opens its door thanks to the good graces and superb optimism of Ventura locals Megan and Kyle Murai.

Murai— a writer herself — went to Cabrillo Middle School and graduated from Ventura High. She got her MFA from Seattle Pacific University and quietly returned to her hometown to open up shop. Her husband Kyle, who grew up in Newport Beach, is an asset manager in the agricultural business.

“It’s been our wild, far-off dream to open a bookstore,” says Murai of her book-lined literary palace. “Whenever we travel to a new city or country, bookshops are top of our must-see list.”

She admits that, “Some friends thought we were crazy to open a book store when we face such stiff competition from all the online conglomerates. But we said, ‘there is something about a physical store that you just can’t get online.’ You can come in touch and feel and mingle (practicing social distancing of course). We hope that Timbre will become a popular place for our community to develop around books and writing.”

Local author Jody Shapiro, the former owner of Ventura’s late and still lamented independent Adventures for Kids bookstore, notes, “I am beyond thrilled that Venturans have, once again, a real bookstore. To open it is an act of bravery and optimism. We applaud them with our patronage. I always said that when I turned 80 I would open another bookstore in Ventura. Am I ever relieved now that I don’t have to! Thanks to Megan and Kyle for doing this for our town. We really need you.”

And there’s further good news for booklovers. Promises Murai: “We are working on having a special niche to feature books penned by the booming number of Ventura County writers.”