About Us

Welcome to Dragonfly Books 
Decorah's local independent bookstore!

112 W. Water St., Decorah IA | 563-382-4275 | info@dragonflybooks.com

Hours - Location & Parking - Dragonfly Motif - Staff - In the News - About Decorah


Dragonfly Books is a family-owned general interest bookstore located on Water Street in downtown Decorah, Iowa. We specialize in local and regional books, organic gardening, sustainable living, signed first editions, Scandinavian interest, mysteries, literary fiction, poetry, children's books, young adult, cooking, and other categories. 

We also special order books for our customers, with very quick turn-around time and no shipping charges for in-store pickup. We look forward to serving your reading needs!

Please note that we are an independent bookstore in Decorah, IA, and are not a publisher.
To reach the publisher Dragonfly Books (an imprint of Penguin Random House), please call 212-782-9000.

 Monday  9:00 - 6:00
 Tuesday   9:00 - 6:00
 Wednesday   9:00 - 6:00 
 Thursday  9:00 - 7:00 
 Friday   9:00 - 6:00 
 Saturday  9:00 - 5:00 
 Sunday 12:00 - 4:00



Dragonfly Books is located at 112 W. Water St., in the heart of downtown Decorah.

Both on and off-street parking is available for Dragonfly Books. Street-side, parallel parking is available on Water Street in front of our store and on adjacent blocks.  This parking is unmetered, and availability may be limited during busy times of the day and evening.

Free, off-street parking is available behind Dragonfly Books in the parking lots off of Day Spring Lane, and can be accessed from Heivly Street between State St. and River St.  Dragonfly Books does not have a back entrance. From off-street parking, you will need to walk to get to the front entrance of Dragonfly Books on Water St.


The Dragonfly Motif

The dragonfly is a common motif in the Arts & Craft and Mission style. 
As stated by The Roycroft Copper Shop:The Dragonfly

The Dragonfly's brilliant colors, when refracted from sunlight, are symbolic of "seeing the light", a way of encouraging one to reach for their full potential in all their endeavors. It symbolizes strength, courage, happiness and renewal.

We thought this was fitting as we embarked on the new adventure of bringing a bookstore to the Decorah area.


The Staff

Kate Rattenborg: Owner / Manager
Sarah Krammen: Bookseller, Marketing Coordinator
Liz Barrett: Bookseller, Frontline Manager
Sara Stromseth-Troy: Bookseller, School & Community Outreach

See some of our favorite books in the Staff Picks section.


In the News

Decorah Newspapers: "New Bookstore in Decorah a Dream Come True" by Julie Berg-Raymond - 2/17/2011

Decorahnews.com: "Dragonfly Books opens in downtown Decorah" by Bob Felde - 2/17/2011

Publisher's Weekly:  "New Indie Opens" by Claire Kirch - 2/7/2011

Publisher's Weekly: "In the Heart of the Matter" by Claire Kirch - 2/7/2011

The Indie Bob Spot: "A Visit to Dragonfly Books, Decorah Iowa" - 2/19/2015

Inspire(d) Media: "Sum of Your Business: Kate Rattenborg / Dragonfly Books" - 1/11/2016

Atlas Obscura: "62 of the World’s Best Independent Bookstores" - 4/28/2018


About Decorah

Forbes: "America's Prettiest Towns" by John Giuffo - 8/16/2013

Smithsonian Magazine: "The 20 Best Small Towns to Visit in 2014" by Smithsonian Magazine - 4/2014

Livability: "2015 Top 100 Best Small Towns" - 2015

Des Moines Register: "Decorah Brewery Considered One of World's Best" by Matthew Leimkuehler - 1/29/2016

Midwest Living Magazine: Decorah -- "One of the Midwest's Greatest Towns" by Trevor Meers & MWL Staff - 7/2016

USA Today: "One of the Top 25 College Towns in the Nation" by Jeff Charis-Carlson - 7/14/2016

South Bend Tribune: "Decorah, Iowa: Find yourself in the town that time forgot" by Tom Weber - 10/23/2016

Midwest Living Magazine: "Decorah, Iowa: A Mountain Town Without Mountains" by Timothy Meinch with LuAnn Brandsen - 10/2017

Midwest Weekends: "A Pocket of Norway" by Beth Gauper - updated 04/2018


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