About Us

Panorama photo of the Mendocino headlands and Main Street, taken from across the bay.

Our Manifesto

WE BELIEVE IN THE BOOK. We believe in quieting the noise and listening to the stories. We believe in traveling far and wide between paper pages. We believe in touching the words, scribbling in the margins, and dogging the ears. We believe in surrounding ourselves with books long finished and books not yet read; in revisiting our younger selves each time we pull old favorites off the shelf.

We believe in five-year-olds inking their names in big letters on the flyleaf. We believe in becoming someone else for four hundred pages. We believe in turning off the screens and unplugging the networks once in awhile. We believe in meeting the author, reading the footnotes, looking up the words and checking the references. We believe in holding our children on our laps and turning the pages together.

We believe in standing shoulder to shoulder in comfortable silence with our fellow citizens before a good shelf of books; we believe in talking face to face with friends and strangers in the aisles of a good bookstore. We believe that together, readers, writers, books and bookstores can work magic.

If you believe, please join us: SAVE THE WORLD. BUY A BOOK.

by Christie Olson Day, copyright 2010

History of Gallery Bookshop and Bookwinkle's Children's Books

Photo of the front exterior of Gallery Bookshop

Gallery Bookshop was established in 1962 in Mendocino's historic Jarvis-Nichols Building. At that time, the shop featured paintings and prints by local artists along with its fine selection of books. Original owner Marvel Glynn sold the store to Betty Goodman, a local actress and patron of the arts, who in 1980 sold it to Tony Miksak. In 1988, Tony opened  Bookwinkle's Children's Books, the first children's bookstore in Mendocino County, at the corner of Albion and Kasten streets in Mendocino. When Gallery Bookshop expanded into its current space in 1993, Bookwinkle's moved too, to share the new location and the store name. In 2006, the store was purchased by current owner Christie Olson Day. Today, Gallery Bookshop & Bookwinkle's Children's Books serves local residents and visitors from around the world with an extensive inventory of current and relevant titles, plus a large selection of eclectic volumes not likely to be found online or at any urban mega-store. Honoring our local heritage on California’s north coast, Gallery Bookshop and Bookwinkle’s Children’s Books prominently features sections on local history, logging, ocean life, wine country, mushrooms, marijuana culture, the arts, and books and gift items by local authors and artists.

Owner Christie Olson Day in front door of Gallery Bookshop with her daughter.Gallery Bookshop's extraordinary customer service is provided by a dedicated, book-loving staff of readers. Some of the current staff have worked at the bookshop for decades, some for a much shorter time, but all have a passion for books and for the people who read them.

For more than 25 years visitors to Gallery Bookshop were greeted by the store’s feline mascot, first Leander, and then Collette, a friendly, longhaired charmer born in the courtyard behind the shop. Draped gracefully across a shelf of best-selling novels or promenading elegantly through the store each morning, Collette purred her greeting to our many visitors for 20 years. Collette passed away in 2004, but lives on in our memories.

Gallery Bookshop features one of the most spectacular views of any bookstore, anywhere (Check out the webcam view on our Homepage). From the cushioned widow seats at the front of our store, customers can observe the annual gray whale migrations, listen to the foghorns warning stray fishing boats off the rocky, fog-shrouded headlands, or head out for a hike on the many trails of the Mendocino Headlands State Park. Take a good book to read, and picnic on the edge of the continent, located just a short walk away.

Although Mendocino is well off the beaten path, Gallery Bookshop and Bookwinkle's Children's Books attracts devoted customers from around the world. Granted, part of the attraction is the picturesque setting. However, the store's outstanding selection of books and its knowledgeable and caring staff are what make Gallery Bookshop a five-star attraction on your list of places to visit. We hope to see you soon.

Photo of a child reading a book in a window seat at Gallery Bookshop


East Wing Expansion

In 2018, our long time neighboring shop, "The Kitchen Store" decided to retire, and Gallery Bookshop expanded into their space. 
Take a tour of the East Wing space with Rob Hawthorne and Catsby