Turtle Island Book Shop

Flooded with light and spilling over with books, pamphlets, letters and prints, this tiny little bookshop is huge on charm. Located in the green and pleasant Elmwood section of Berkeley, Turtle Island Book Shop carries an incredibly discerning selection of art, literature and history in all kinds of forms. It's also a pocket-sized museum of mid-century California counter-culture, with original manuscript letters by Jack Kerouac, a wide-ranging collection of ephemera printed by Zephyrus Image, and old hippie magazines galore. But lest any would-be visitor think they'll be walking into incense-vapor and sitar music, note that Turtle Island is a light and airy shop whose selection seems primarily informed by three criteria: beauty, rarity, and an ability to fascinate.

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