Seattle Mystery Bookshop announced last week that its founder, Bill Farley, is retiring. For real this time. Farley opened the store in 1990 after having worked at Whodunnit in Philadelphia and being told by visiting author Aaron Elkins that Seattle needed a specialty mystery shop. He sold the now-famous—or is it infamous?—shop to long-time employee JB Dickey in 1999 but he never did manage to retire. “But now it really is time for him to kick back, play mah jong, see just how fast his yacht can go, finish all his carpentry projects, get that black belt, finish his PhD in ictheology, sign up for that Western line-dancing class, get his sky diving certificate AND his motorcycle license, and take that oft-postponed voyage to the Outer Planets,” Dickey writes in a blog post. “Which is just a way of saying he won’t have scheduled days any more after Labor Day.”
Farley’s name will stay on the masthead of the store’s newsletter, its bookmark and on the pebble-glassed door. He promises that you’ll still see him at the shop, after he’s had his split pea soup and pie at Bakeman’s. An official farewell party is in the works.