Beloved Berkeley bookstore is up for sale

(Photo courtesy of Mrs. Dalloway's Bookstore)

Mrs. Dalloway’s, a mainstay of Berkeley’s Elmwood district for the past 17 years, is for sale.

Co-owners Marion Abbott & Ann Leyhe announced their decision on the bookstore’s website and in a Facebook post Thursday morning and said they hope to finalize a sale by fall this year.

“We’ve decided it’s time to pass the torch and begin to think about what might be next for each of us. It wasn’t a sudden decision after our difficult Covid year; this is not a fire sale. It’s something we’ve been reflecting on for some time. We’re excited for the future of the bookstore under new stewards who will carry their energy and vision beyond what we created,” they wrote.

In addition to its focus on current local and national trends in fiction and non-fiction, the bookstore has a thriving events program that regularly features both renowned and new authors, and a distinctive garden and nature section that includes books, homewares, and unusual gifts.

A hallmark of the store is its children’s literature section — Mrs. Dalloway’s staff of 11 includes three children’s literature specialists — which offers everything from board books to young adult fiction, but has particular depth in books for middle grade readers.

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