Kids who begin their reading lives at Children's Book World will have no trouble transitioning to Skylight or Book Soup later on. The curatorial ethic of a good independent bookstore is in place, right down to the staff-recommendation cards dangling from the stacks. The selections range from Huevos Verdes con Jamon up through Catcher in the Rye, and the staff has a refined sense of which books work for which ages. There are books for pleasure, and books to allay some of life's disasters — look under the headings Death, Divorce, Substance Abuse, New Baby and Toilet Training. Children's Book World also hosts readings and book signings, not to mention its Saturday morning story and music events. Still around after 26 years in business, it has earned its status as a local treasure. 10580 ½ W. Pico Blvd., Cheviot Hills. (310) 559-2665,

—Gene Maddaus

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