We’re Easing Back Open — New Hours and Updated Restrictions

We are back open for limited hours and some restrictions

It feels like it’s been a looooong time since our closing for COVID back in March. Since then we’ve been keeping our customers supplied with books via shipping, home delivery and curbside pickup. About a month ago, we started opening the store to those of you who booked an appointment and if there were no appointments, we allowed walkins as long as the group were part of their “bubble family.”

I won’t lie, it’s been a tough couple of months, but we’ve survived, thanks to you! We even have a new addition: MR. BINGLEY our new bookstore cat!

I figured this was a good time to get him acclimated to the store without a lot of traffic at first. He’s adjusted well, sleeps in the front window a lot, and greets most customers when they come in (he will run to a box and meow for pets).

Starting this week, Alex has now been coming every day and we instituted new hours and eased up a little on some of our restrictions.

The New Hours and Restrictions

Without all the tourists, the hours and days we’re busy have morphed, so we’ve temporarily changed our hours of operation to:

MONDAY 11 – 6
TUESDAY 11 – 6
FRIDAY 11 – 6
SUNDAY closed

You can still come later, you just need to book an appointment to reserve the store. You can come during these hours and we’ll be here (I now have Alex helping me cover hours) and we’ll allow up to eight people in the store at a time, provided they’re wearing non-valved masks and keep six feet apart. If you don’t feel comfortable sharing the space with other customers yet, we understand: we suggest you book an appointment in that case, as appointments get the whole store to themselves. Be aware that if someone has reserved the store, we can’t allow you in until they leave, even if it’s during the hours posted above. If you want to come down without making an appointment and want to make sure it’s not reserved, you can call us.

Contactless Delivery and Pickup

We are still doing deliveries to the downtown and midtown areas, and you can also do curbside pickup. Browse and buy from our selection online and choose which option you’d like!

Let me know if you have any questions! Thank you for your continued support!

Ghost in the Shelves: Get to Know our Local Author Program

Since its beginning in 1941, The Haunted Book Shop has been a literary hub for Mobile, bringing together writers, readers, and creatives of all kinds. We continue this tradition today of being a vital community-minded asset to Downtown by hosting local author signings during the LoDa Art Walk, story times, genre chats, workshops, book clubs and more.

We also created an Author’s Program which includes a Writer-in-Residence. The goal of the program is to provide support as well as foster a symbiotic relationship between local and regional authors and the bookstore. The Writer-in-Residence program not only gives writers a place to work, but also gives them casual, organic visibility to customers.

The back half of our Writer’s Room is dedicated to the Writer-in-Residence space, featuring a desk and reference books for a writer to have a place to write. Writers have access to free Wi-Fi and a Keurig. Also available is an area for the author to set out their books and swag. Books would be rung up on our register, with the store getting the usual 40% commission. Writers in our Author’s Program may use this space for free for a limited number of hours a week in exchange for us getting this percentage of book sales and also answering any questions customers might have.

Our Writer’s Room is located on the mezzanine level. Its walls are filled with books from crafting dialogue to writing science fiction to researching time periods, and everything in between. We have shelves for author biographies and literary criticism as well as a shelf of how-to books for our young authors and illustrators too!

Are you a writer interested in our program?

Here are some of our rules and parameters:

• The space is available for those who have purchased a membership to our Author Program. Memberships are $10/year. This includes:

  1. 10% Discount on writing books located in the Writer’s Room (Mezzanine level)
  2. Use of the Writer-in-Residence space in the Writer’s Room
  3. Stock up to five (5) copies of each title of the author’s works at the bookstore in our Consignment Program at a 70/30 split instead of the standard 60/40 (70% of sale price goes to author and 30% to the bookstore)
  4. 10% Discount on writing workshops unless otherwise marked
  5. Have a copy of your book on a designated shelf in the Writer’s Room as well as in the local section of each genre

• Members must reserve the space using the reservation link
• Two time slots a day are allotted (except on ArtWalk days and holidays) and members can reserve up to two slots a week
• We have a sign up that says to customers, “If earbuds in, do not disturb writer”
• No active selling. Meaning, you can’t come and stand in your area and approach customers, trying to sell your book. Or worse, tell a customer not to buy whatever they picked up elsewhere in the store, saying it’s awful, and then pimp yours. This has happened at our store, otherwise it never would have even occurred to me someone would do this. It’s meant to be more of a passive venue–a place like Starbucks where you can write and if someone approaches YOU, great.

This isn’t ideal for every writer. If you’re someone who doesn’t typically go to coffee shops to write, or, need complete silence, it may not work for you.  But there’s something magical about hanging your Writer-in-Residence shingle outside the door. It may be just the validation you need to let the words flow free. (Though while the bookstore is open by appointment only, it is actually pretty quiet.)

Ready to sign up? We’d love to help you achieve your literary goals! https://www.thehauntedbookshopmobile.com/author-memberships

The Ghost in the Shelves: Get to Know Us Series features posts highlighting aspects of our store that might not be obvious or well-known. 

Kid’s Book Scavenger Hunt!

To continue our celebration of Children’s Book Week and the joy of reading, we’re having a scavenger hunt!

To play: Use our website to find children’s books that match each description. Write one title in each blank. Items may have multiple correct answers but a title may only be used once. Find a book that has a blue cover and a dragon on it? You can only use it as one answer so keep hunting.

Parent or legal guardian turns in by texting a picture of the completed scavenger hunt to (251) 348-7668, or emailing info@thehauntedbookshopmobile.com, subject line “Scavenger Hunt” by Sunday, May 10th. We ask for the child’s age so we can put together an age-appropriate prize pack.

Names will be placed in our Sorting Hat and drawn at random. Winner will be announced on Monday, May 11th by a text or email to the winner and on our social media.

Prize pack may either be picked up at our no contact curb, or if you want to browse the shop while you’re downtown, you’re welcome to book an appointment.

Happy hunting & reading!

The Haunted Book Shop Scavenger Hunt form: HBS Scavenger Hunt CBW


Introducing Browse by Appointment!

Miss coming into the store but don’t want to stress about maintaining distance from other shoppers? We’re going to open the store to appointments-only now as a compromise. We feel like this is a responsible/measured approach to opening our store to shoppers as it reduces the amount of cleaning supplies we’ll consume and reduces the risk of exposure to you and our staff, while still allowing you the soul-balm of browsing our shelves.

Just use our online booking system to reserve the store!


Miss Downtown? We Can Bring Downtown to You! Introducing our Quarantine Care Packages for Book Lovers!

Are you and the kids stuck at home? Want to show some love to a housebound family member or friend? The Helping Haints Quarantine Care Package is perfect for them! Send books and gifts while also helping The Haunted Book Shop and other downtown local businesses until we can re-open our sales floor to the public.

Our Wine Lovers Care Package

You can either do just a care package, which comes with books and candy/chocolate, or start with one of the care packages and choose some of the add-ons from some of your fave downtown shops like Nova Espresso, A&M Peanut Shop, OK Bicycle Shop and more! Have someone who loves books and hot boiled peanuts? We can add-on some from the Peanut Shop!

How it works is that you can choose our Curated Package and fill out a questionnaire, and we’ll pick out books for you or for the person you’re giving it to. This is great for someone who wants to be surprised (a mystery package!) or would like to give a gift to someone based on their tastes. Alternatively, you can choose our You Pick Package and fill your cart with the items you want us to put in it and control exactly what goes in it.

Both comes attractively packaged with candy and a gift tag (our logo on one side and a small space for us to write your gift message).

To order, visit our care package page on our website and choose your package, add your add-ons if so desired, and we’ll take care of the rest!

We’re Helping the Easter Bunny!

The Easter Bunny has enlisted our store to help flatten the curve! To minimize spread of the virus, we’re helping the furry friend to distribute baskets on Sunday morning, right to your front porch!

So that I can tell the Easter Bunny which households we’ll cover, just go to our website and choose the books and gifts you’d like us to put in the basket and then select which basket you want.

Step One

Shop our website and fill up your cart with books and gifts. Here’s some ideas:

Step Two

Add the Easter Basket to your Cart and choose whether you want Basic or Deluxe. The description on that page says what’s included. Please note that this does NOT dictate the SIZE of the basket–that’s dependent on how much space we’ll need for what you buy to put in it (like shopping bags). So if it’s a small book and a deck of cards, for instance, it will go in the small basket pictured, even if you order Deluxe.

Step 3

Before you hit Checkout, you’ll see that it’s defaulting to pickup. If you live in Midtown or Downtown (basically inside the circle created by I-10, I-65, I-165 and the Mobile River) and want me to deliver it Sunday morning, click on “change” next to where it gives the Pickup time and address and choose “Delivery.” If you live across the Bay or west of I-65, then you can leave it at the default for curbside pickup.


Q: What if I have more than one child?
A: No problem! Just put your whole order in the cart and choose the quantity of baskets. Then after you put in your card, but before you hit Complete Order (in the section labeled “Review and Submit Order”), there’s a Note to Seller field–use it to tell me which items go in which baskets. For example: “Basket 1 gets the Who Is book and the deck of cards and Basket 2 gets the Activity book and the other deck of cards”

Q: What does the basket cost cover?
A: Full disclosure–these are not premium brand chocolates or baskets. Basically it covers the cost of the chocolates, the basket, the fake grass, and the plastic eggs, as well as the time and labor of putting it together and delivering them Sunday morning, and the gas to deliver them. The Deluxe just has glittery eggs (and 2 more than the Basic) and a cheap, kid-friendly trinket from DollarTree.