The Artists and Authors bookstore and art gallery was originally established in 1984. For 19 years the bookstore was known as Much Ado Books. During that period the shop was featured in publications ranging from Victoria Magazine to The Village Voice. In addition, readers of a local newspaper have voted it Best Bookstore in Marblehead two years in a row. In September 2003, the bookstore was purchased by new ownership and the name was changed to Artists and Authors. The new name reflects the addition of a modern print gallery and rare book area that have been added to compliment the exiting inventory of general purpose old, rare, and out of print books.

Artists and Authors occupies approximately 3000 square feet of retail space and is located at 108 Washington Street in the historic seaside town of Marblehead, Massachusetts. We have roughly 30,000 books in our shop with more than 15,000 books listed on-line. We have a broad-based inventory in categories ranging from Antiques to Zoology. Our stock of general fiction is among the best you will find anywhere, with first editions for collectors and less expensive reading copies to fit any budget.

The store is well lit and well organized, with plenty of space for browsing. The shop consists of three separate areas. The first is an art gallery featuring original paintings, prints, and works on paper by noted 20th century artists. We also have an extensive inventory of vintage maps and nautical charts. The second area is our Rare Books section featuring rare first editions, signed and limited editions, and other old and hard-to-find titles. The final area is our general purpose, out-of-print book section. Encompassing close to 30,000 titles, our shop houses one of the largest used book inventories in New England.


Our town, Marblehead, offers many charms for non-bookish people, as well. The winding Colonial streets offer an array of shops and restaurants. The harbor and sea views are spectacular. We highly recommend a visit to the Lee Mansion, one of the finest Colonial-era houses your can tour, and the Marblehead Historical Society, with a marvelous display of paintings by primitive artists J.O.J. Frost. In addition, Marblehead Arts Association, housed in the beguiling Hooper Mansion, is always worth a visit.

For more information on Marblehead visit the Marblehead Chamber of commerce by clicking here.


During the spring, summer and fall, Artists and Authors is open seven days a week. Winter hours may vary so check our Web site or contact us for official winter hours. We are closed Thanksgiving, Christmas, and New Years Day.

Store hours:


10:00 AM to 5:30 PM


10:00 AM to 5:30 PM


10:00 AM to 5:30 PM


10:00 AM to 5:30 PM


10:00 AM to 5:30 PM


10:00 AM to 6:00 PM


12:00 Noon to 5:00 PM


From Boston:

Follow Route 1A North (some people take the Callahan Tunnel and pass Logan Airport; others prefer the Tobin Bridge leading to Route 16 and thence to 1A). Stay on 1A as it zips through Revere and into Lynn, crossing a humped bridge. Roughly two miles later, ignore the signs pointing to 1A, which heads left, and instead bear right toward Swampscott. Drive along the shore with the ocean on your right, until you head left at a fork in the road (with a gas station in the center of it). About 4 miles after entering Swampscott, the road will deposit you in Marblehead. Follow this road, Atlantic Avenue, as it leads you into the center of town; you’ll notice a hard dog-leg to the left at the end. A block or two later there is a short one~way section of road, at the end of which is a Talbots. Turn right onto Pleasant Street; which ends five or six blocks later. You’ll see us across the street, just a bit to the left. There is on-street parking available on both Pleasant and on Washington Street.

From points east and North:

We recommend heading towards Route 128 North. Follow this to exit 25A, depositing you on Route 114 East, winding through Peabody and Salem (watch for the signs!). Eventually, it passes into Marblehead; stay on the same road all the way through town. It becomes Pleasant Street, and at the very end it ends at Washington Street. Look slightly to the left and you’ll see us. There’s on-street parking on both streets.

Our Staff

Dust Jacket – The Store Cat

Along with close to 30,000 books, and a large assortment of prints, Artists and Authors boasts a feline presence in the form of a cat named Dust Jacket. Known more commonly as DJ, she previously lived in a bookstore in Newburyport. When that shop closed, DJ moved to Marblehead and has been here ever since.

Thom VanHorn

After a 17 year career in high-tech marketing and zero successful IPOs, Thom decided to turn his 15 years of modern first edition and 20th century print collecting into a new career. On most days you will find him in the bookstore conducting book searches, scouring auction catalogs, and in other ways assisting customers find a collectible copy of the elusive book that they are seeking.

Elaine Steblecki

Elaine a former Much Ado employee has been with the store for 10 years. If we have a book in stock, Elaine will find it. When Elaine is not assisting customers and managing the day-to day operations of the bookstore, she is a co-publisher of T.E. Notes, a subscription newsletter dedicated to the life and accomplishments of T.E. Lawrence.

Cary Chandler

Cary has been with the store for 2 years. She has a personal collection of books related to fairies and an extensive knowledge of children’s books. When not working at Artists and Authors, Cary is learning the fine art of bookbinding and book repair with an eye to a career as a professional bookbinder and restoration expert.