Finding a Great Bookstore Is a Treat in Metro Des Moines

July 24, 17

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People who love to read might say there is no faster form of travel than books. Whether print or digital, books can take you from Australia to Zanzibar and back to Des Moines all in a day. Books let you chill on a hot summer afternoon by reading about Antarctica or warm up during a winter snowstorm in Waukee by taking you to the tropics.

As devoted as you may be to checking out good reads from your local library, sometimes you want to own books and wander the aisles of bookstores. Which ones are best in Des Moines?

Discovering Des Moines Bookstores

Beaverdale Books, 2629 Beaver Avenue, is one of the metro area's premier choices for a wide range of reading, children's story times, author appearances and even personal events including baby showers and weddings. It's also a popular venue for book clubs.

Call the store at (515) 279-5400 to inquire about upcoming author visits and other special events.

Iowa is known worldwide for its writer workshops. According to The Des Moines Register, Beaverdale includes the works of more than 400 Iowa writers on its shelves.

Author visits are also popular at Plain Talk Books & Coffee, 602 Grand Avenue, which serves bakery goods, BL&T sandwiches and coffee as well as book chat. You can reach Plain Talk on Facebook or by calling (515) 243-0815.

Going Half Price in Clive

North of Des Moines in Clive, you'll find a branch of the Texas-based chain Half Price Books, 10201 University Avenue. It's the nation's largest family-owned retailer of new and used books.

Company owners, Ken Gjemre and Pat Anderson, founded Half Price Books in 1972 and now have 120 stores. They describe their company as buying and selling "everything ever printed or recorded (except yesterday's newspaper)."

Half Price's merchandise includes signed first editions as well as DVDs of movies and television shows, music and textbooks. Want to know what they have in stock? Aside from searching the company website, call (515) 224-4429.

Bookin' It to West Des Moines

If you're looking for things to do in West Des Moines, the city has two malls each of which has a Barnes and Noble bookstore for browsing and relaxing.

On a hot summer day, enjoy more than a cool story and air conditioning at the Shoppes at Three Fountains B&N, 4550 University Avenue, (505) 221-9171. The cafe serves a number of cool drinks, including whip-cream topped Frappuccino®.

Children's story times at the Three Fountains store are held every Saturday and focus on favorite books such as Peterrific (the little brother of Pinkalicious) and How to Get Your Teacher Ready (for school, that is).

In addition to Friday story times for children, the Jordan Creek B&N store, 101 South Jordan Creek Parkway, hosts a regular writers' group.  It's also the place to get "pop-cultured," because special events include cosplay gatherings for which adults and children are invited to dress like characters from favorite books, movies and video games. Afterward, stop for lunch at the store's café. Menu items include Philly cheesesteak sandwiches and vegetarian farmer's wraps.  Call (515) 453-2980 for more information.

Enjoying a Book by the Pool

A well-stocked bookstore equipped with comfortable places to sit and read is like a luxurious living room away from home. But all good shopping trips must come to an end. That's when you want to go home to luxury.

When it's time to consider a new residence near all the many shops and activities in the metro area, consider Spring Apartments. You can lounge with a book by the resort-style pools at our West Des Moines and Waukee apartment communities. Please contact us today for more information.

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