Otto Penzler and The Mysterious Bookshop

The Mysterious Bookshop

Otto Penzler, a celebrated writer and editor, a mystery fan, is the proprietor of the oldest and the largest mystery specialist bookstore in the world—The Mysterious Bookshop. Founded in Midtown Manhattan in 1975, the bookstore’s current location, which we will be visiting tomorrow, is in Tribeca. The store is renowned for primarily dealing with out-of-print, secondhand, and other hard-to-find books. Penzler himself has particular love for rare books as he claims “they have a place in [his] heart.”

[The Mysterious Bookshop Website]

Otto Penzler

Born in 1942 and graduating University of Michigan with an English degree, Otto Penzler is an  award-winning publisher and author. He was awarded the Edgar Award twice in years 1977 and 2010 for co-writing Encyclopedia of Mystery and Detection and editing The Lineup. He is the founder of The Mysterious Press, a mystery and crime fiction publishing house which he founded in 1975, sold to Warner Books in 1989, and just recently reacquired. He also founded the publishing firms Otto Penzler Books and The Armchair Detective Library, and has imprints at Houghton Mifflin Harcourt and Atlantic Books.

Few of his numerous publishing works include: The Best American Mystery Stories, The Best American Crime Writing, Christmas at the Mysterious Bookshop, The 50 Greatest Mysteries of All Time, and The Best American Noir of the Century. He served on the Board of Directors of the Mystery Writers of America for fourteen years during which he was awarded the Ellery Queen Award and a Raven. Further, his original works include: Encyclopedia of Mystery and Detection, and 101 Greatest Movies of Mystery and Suspense. He was the columnist for the New York Sun where he wrote the popular weekly mystery column The Crime Scene as well. Zombies! Zombies! Zombies! is the latest short story collection edited by Otto Penzler on sale from September 20th. [Book Info]

Finally, check out the aritcle Penzler wrote about noir fiction for Huffington Post [Article] and the video clip on Otto Penzler and The Mysterious Bookshop. [Video]


“I realized that the best mystery writers were every bit as good as the best non-genre writer.” -Otto Penzler


Emily Lee


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