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The Five Best Independently Owned Bookstores in Houston


Houston is a vibrant and colourful city that fosters a wide variety of entertainment options for every possible human interest. For the avid bibliophiles and casual readers, the city is home to some of the best curated independently owned bookstores in the country.

When you feel the need to slow down and take in a good book, why not check out these friendly neighbourhood establishments and find something that may make you want to curl up in a corner and just read.

Blue Willow Bookshop

The staff at the Blue Willow Bookshop call themselves “a merry band of booksellers with opinionated advice.” No kidding there, it’s actually on their website.  They are knowledgeable about all the book titles they carry and are always on hand to help out any curious customer.

They also have an active reader engagement program that includes book signings and readings by the authors, as well as activities for young readers and tweens. The bookstore is also home to several active book clubs and has a student-referral program for teachers to encourage actual visits to the store.

Blue Willow Bookshop is located on 14532 Memorial Drive, Houston TX and is open Mondays to Saturdays.

Kaboom Books

This is not your typical used book store. Co-owner John Dillman says he only accepts books that he has some knowledge of and he means it. They carry a plethora of titles ranging from current editions to out-of-print titles in genres  that include fiction, art, history, and the social and physical sciences.

Prepare to spend hours browsing through the floor-to-ceiling shelves crammed with books organized into 83 sections with over 72,000 titles in stock. It’s a booklovers’ haven and a neighborhood treasure.

Kaboom Books is at 3116 Houston Avenue, Houston TX and is open Mondays to Saturdays, 12:00 – 8:00pm.

Brazos Bookstore

The staff at Brazos Bookstore is proud to say that they have read everything they sell and are happy to help you with suggestions and recommendations. The bookstore probably has the most highly curated selection of books in the city. You can tell that these people love reading books and are happy to share their best finds: the week’s top titles are always prominently displayed.

Their website is proud to say that they are “a hub for the most creative, intelligent and engaged readers in Houston” and they have a calendar chock-full of literary events for nearly every day of the week. These include book signings, book clubs, kids’ programs, and storytelling sessions.

You can find Brazos Bookstore at 2421 Bissonnet Street, Houston TX.

Murder by the Book

If you love a good mystery, then this is definitely the bookstore for you. They are the biggest purveyor of crime fiction in the US. Your inner sleuth can fill up on a wide selection of books on espionage, mystery, and crime thrillers that are stacked high on their shelves.

Not sure what to choose? Little handwritten notes inserted between the books tip you off to personal favorites recommended by the store’s staff.

The bookstore also hosts frequent book signings, author readings, and themed monthly discussion groups

Murder by the Book is located at 2342 Bissonnet Street, Houston TX and is open Mondays to Saturdays (9:00 a.m.- 6:00 p.m.) and Sundays (11:00 a.m.-5:00 p.m.).

Becker’s Books

Becker’s Books houses a collection of used, rare, and out-of-print titles in a beautifully renovated building that was once a private home. Walking into the store, you can easily get lost in the endless stacks of books that cover the shelves of nearly every wall.

Books are piled on chairs and atop boxes all over the house. And nestled amidst the books are cozy chairs in corner nooks that you can huddle into as you bury your nose in gently loved books that have that old book paper scent. Becker’s Books is definitely a haven for avid collectors and the everyday book lover.

Becker’s Books can be found at 7405 Westview Drive, Houston TX.

For more useful information about living in or exploring Houston, call HUNTER REAL ESTATE GROUP at 713-572-0824 or email us at We’re happy to help!

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