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10 Hideaways for Book Lovers in DFW

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Kristi Rowe, NewsCastic

Bookstores are hard to come by these days, but we’ve found a few hidden treasures in DFW where book lovers can lose themselves for a few hours.

The stores themselves are delightful, and we think readers will easily find a worthy indulgence or two in virtually any interest category. We’ve dropped a few pearls for our readers here too; you might recognize a few of these famous first lines from notable authors.


It was love at first sight.


Taschen is a German art book company, but you can purchase some of their finest offerings right in downtown Dallas. They fit right in at the eclectic Joule Hotel with its neo-Gothic architecture, mid-century modern art collection, and trendy retail boutiques. Browsing is welcome, so stay a while and soak it all in.

First line from Catch-22 by Joseph Heller (1961)


It was the best of times, it was the worst of times…

Another feast for the eyes, the Kimbell Art Museum in Fort Worth offers a selection of noteworthy books in its gift shop. While some are simply visually stunning, others offer an in-depth exploration of art and architecture. We like Friendship and Loss in the Victorian Portrait whose cover features May Sartoris (by Frederic Leighton.)

First line from A Tale of Two Cities by Charles Dickens (1859)


Ships at a distance have every man’s wish on board.


Book signings, speakers and lectures, poetry slams, family book nights, and oh yes, of course, books! You’ll find all of these at The Dock Bookshop in Fort Worth. The Dock will also sponsor an African American author panel – Men With a Message – at the Dallas Book Festival on April 30th.

First line from Their Eyes Were Watching God by Zora Neale Hurston (1937)


All this happened, more or less.


Coming soon to Deep Ellum, Deep Vellum Bookstore is now open for scheduled special events with a Grand Opening for bookstore hours coming in April. Deep Vellum Publishing is a not-for-profit organization on a mission to cultivate and foster DFW’s growing literary community.

First line from Slaughterhouse Five by Kurt Vonnegut (1969)


He was an old man who fished alone in a skiff in the Gulf Stream…


A book lovers’ hideaway in every sense of the word, we found Serj Books when a trolley tour of downtown Dallas drove past it. Outside signage boasts of books, barbecue, and ice cream, and we wondered if they could possibly fit any more good things inside. Turns out they can. The delicious food is locally sourced, right down to the tea and coffee as well as the water and milk used to make them. Midday music and open mics make it even greater. There’s so much good stuff in here, it’s spilling over into a second location, reportedly in the Mosaic Dallas. Visit the St. Paul location during the week and stay tuned for more news about the second store.

First line from The Old Man and the Sea by Ernest Hemingway (1952)


If I am out of my mind, it’s all right with me, thought Moses Herzog.

Since 1983, Recycled Books, Records, and CDs has been a must-see place in Denton. Housed in the old Wright Opera House space on the square in historic downtown Denton, this mammoth store stocks about half a million books. Literally!

First line from Herzog by Saul Bellow (1964)


There was no possibility of taking a walk that day.

Find plenty of books, plus DVDs, videos, music, and magazines in the downtown Mesquite store, Paperbacks Plus. You may feel like you’ve traveled back in time, especially when you see the bookshelf of free books and magazines in the front of the store.

First line from Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte (1847)


In my younger and more vulnerable years my father gave me some advice…


With stores in the Oak Cliff and Lochwood neighborhoods in Dallas, Lucky Dog Bookstores are part of the family-owned business that also runs Paperbacks Plus. They love for readers to recycle their treasures, offering trade credit for used books, movies, and music.

First line from The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald (1925)


The cold passed reluctantly from the earth, and the retiring fogs revealed an army stretched out on the hills, resting.

Late nights and booze? At a bookstore? Well, only if it’s a wild bookstore – The Wild Detectives, that is. It’s a place where you can read morning, noon and night. Because you probably already do. But here you can do it aided and abetted by your drink of choice, great conversations, and special events. Come be inspired as you meet admirers and creators of some of the best new books, records, shows, plays, and ideas.

First line from The Red Badge of Courage by Stephen Crane (1895)


All children, except one, grow up.


It’s not exactly a hideaway, and since there are more than 16 stores in DFW alone (and even more in 16 states!) Half-Price Books doesn’t have quite the same flavor as the other stores we’ve shared here. But it’s flavor is delicious. You simply can’t talk about books in DFW without mentioning Half Price Books.

A childhood memory for many, visits to their suburban stores make you feel right at home, with just enough differences for each store tp establish its own flavor. And speaking of flavor, try a tasty treat at Black Forest Cafe at the Flagship store on Northwest Highway if you haven’t already. The grown up memories you make might be even better than those from childhood.

First line from Peter Pan by J.M. Barrie (1911)


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