Monday, December 23, 2013

Wordcraft -- Cowtown's independent book sellers

Looking for that last minute gift for a special someone? Or for yourself? It’s not too late to pick up something unique from Fort Worth’s several independent book sellers. Cowtown is loaded with culture, from its world class museums to a small but fascinating group of bookstores that maintain physical as well as virtual presences.

Back Door Book Shop -- 901 ½ Throckmorton (a block from the Fort Worth Star-Telegram offices), Brian and Larue Perkins’s shop has operated out of this early twentieth century building since the 1960’s. Despite what Perkins says was his and his wife’s retirement in 1995, he estimates they still have fifty thousand books in inventory, most of which they sell through the internet. However, for in-store purchases, Back Door accepts only cash or checks.

The shop’s normal operating hours are 11 a.m. - 3 p.m. Monday through Friday, although they will close Christmas Day and probably by about 2 p.m. Christmas Eve. Wide-ranging inventory includes a selection of art and collectibles. Numerous paid parking lots in the neighborhood or bring some quarters for metered parking. For information and contact information,

Baxter's Treehouse Books and Antiques -- operating inside the Montgomery Street Antique Mall, 2601 Montgomery Street (corner of Montgomery and I-30), near Fort Worth’s Cultural District. Owner Gina Baxter has something for everyone, with stock ranging from children’s books to antiquarian and first editions, including several decades’ worth of magazines. Her booth at the antique mall includes chairs and reading lamps to welcome browsers.

There is extensive parking available on the Montgomery side of the mall. The mall’s hours are 10 a.m. - 6 p.m. Monday through Saturday, noon - 6 p.m. Sunday. It will close at 4 p.m. Christmas Eve and remain closed for Christmas Day. For information about Baxter’s shop, see

Kimbell Art Museum -- 3333 Camp Bowie Boulevard in the Fort Worth Cultural District. Yes, it’s an art museum, but the gift shop specializes in art books and art-related collectibles, supplies, and accessories, including a variety of items for children. And while you’re there, take a free look at the permanent collections in the main museum and the newly-completed adjacent pavilion. Free parking at the rear of the museum and in adjacent lots. Open Tuesday - Thursday and Saturday, 10 a.m. - 5 p.m., Friday noon - 8 p.m., Sunday noon -5 p.m. Closed Mondays, and also on Christmas Day and New Year’s Day. For information about the museum and its works, see

Texas Star Books -- Also within the Montgomery Street Antiques Mall is Sue Fox’s shop, with an array of Texana ranging from the state’s best barbecue joints, to volumes of local history to the late Texas journalist A.C. Green’s 50 + Best Books on Texas (as well as a variety of those fifty best). The book booth also specializes in U.S. and military history, including an array of original World War II posters. The booth observes the antique mall’s hours. For more information, see

The Dock Bookshop -- 6637 Meadowbrook Drive near Loop 820. Housed in a modest strip shopping mall, The Dock specializes in contemporary African-American books, including an extensive selection for children, accessories and collectibles. In business for the past five years, according to co-owner Dominique, it hosts a variety of community events, including meetings for the Shabaka History Society, reading groups, and author signings. Ample parking. Open Monday through Saturday, 11 a.m. - 8 p.m., Sunday noon - 5 p.m., but closing for Christmas Day. For information and a calendar of events, see

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