- About Us
- Staff Picks
- Book of the Month
- Local Authors
- Book Clubs
- Glen Arbor
In 1985 Mollie Weeks, wife of George Weeks, history writer and political columnist, first opened The Cottage Book Shop as a used bookstore in a cottage behind the Glen Arbor Bed and Breakfast. Friends helped by donating books. After relocating between Ken Scott Photography and Ruth Conklin's gallery, she sold ten years later to Barbara Siepker who relocated the shop to the historic Arbor Light Building where Glen Arbor Artists Gallery is located on Lake Street
Barbara's daughter Brita was a high school junior in 1995. After attending the University of Illinois, Brita has outgrown the confines of Glen Arbor, studying in Buenos Aires, receiving her law degree from Colombia University and now works for Debevoise and Plimpton doing international finance work in New York City. Reading and writing remain creative outlets, while running and sailing keep her active. During her year in Tokyo she ran the marathon. We welcome Brita's visits, and thank her for the many years of work in the shop, photographing, editing of all publications and creator of our original webpage.
In 1998, Barbara located a summer log cabin for the home of The Cottage Book Shop. It was a mile away on Glen Lake and had been build in the early 1920s by D.D. Day's nephew, Larry Day. It was moved intact including the bark on the cedar logs, and flowers in the flower boxes to its location across the street. It has been restored and winterized with original rooms and enclosed porches providing cozy natural locations for its book selections of regional, children, fiction, architectural, history and indie commerce bestsellers. The loft serves as office and storage.
In 2000, a semi-annual personal, customer-friendly newsletter with recommendations of staff and customers was begun. In 2006, a monthly email newsletter was added to highlight Book of the Month Club selections (more information under Book of the Month tab). We have participated from the beginning in the American Book Association's Indie Commerce (originally named Book Sense) program of recommended books by independent book stores. We report our weekly sales to them which are counted in their weekly bestseller's lists which we post.
Barbara continues selecting all of the books our year-round, second home owners and visiting customers love to find in stock. She relies on reviews by customer, independent bookstore owners and publishers. We support non-partisan artistic, community, and environmental causes. Barbara was a founder and past president of the Glen Arbor Art Association and on the Boards of the Leelanau Conservancy, Glen Lake Association and Glen Lake Chamber of Commerce. With her husband Frank founded the non-profit publishing company, Leelanau Press (see Leelanau Press tab). Barbara's particular love is local history and is always looking for family history and photographs of the area. She has reconstituted the Glen Arbor History Group which works closely with Dave Taghon at Empire's History Museum. Additional members are Grace Dickinson, John Tris, Laurel Jeris and Barb Kelly. We are always looking for people willing to participate in and help transcribe interviews.