Debbie Beamer, owner of Mechanicsburg Mystery Bookshop in Mechanicsburg, Pennsylvania, turned a lifetime love of mystery novels into a successful business that has kept readers flipping pages for decades. Since 1990, her mystery-themed bookshop has been providing customers with the best whodunits you can find on a shelf.
I’m a sucker for a good mystery, and oftentimes the cozier the better. From the classics like Sherlock Holmes to more modern series like Louise Penny’s Inspector Gamache novels – and even the books based on the Murder, She Wrote TV show – I turn to mysteries when I want an escape. So finding this shop on my recent Pennsylvania bookshop crawl was a pleasure.
And even more of a surprise? The welcome I received when I got there. I spent quite a while chatting with the employee behind the counter and, later, even Debbie herself, who took considerable time to learn about the kinds of mysteries I like to read and to offer some hand-picked recommendations.
It’s the kind of attentiveness that makes for solid customer relationships – something the shop is obviously doing quite well. There are routine book club meetings, in-store events, and a popular newsletter. And if the vast selection of new and used books doesn’t reveal the title a customer wants, special ordering is done at no additional charge.
The shop’s décor is a fun blend of mystery-themed items, from skeletons to black cats. And, when I stopped by in the summer, there was even some “Christmas in July” themed holiday décor around the shop, creating a fun, creative, and inviting space. Beyond books, there are puzzles, games, cards, toys, and clothing items.
I left the shop feeling as though I’d made new friends and with a carefully chosen novel that I’m looking forward to diving into. I was told that if I don’t like it, I can bring it back for exchange. A nice touch! Even if mysteries aren’t your thing, one stop into the Mechanicsburg Mystery Bookshop and you may just change your mind.
Mechanicsburg Mystery Bookshop is located at 6 Clouser Road, Mechanicsburg, Pennsylvania. Open Wednesday through Saturday.