Domy Books, Austin, Texas

This post originally appeared on I Read Odd Books

It’s been over a year since I wrote about an independent book store, which may seem like a long lapse for the average person. But I kind of like not leaving my house often. If I’m not taking a cat to the vet, buying groceries or subject to fire evacuations, I pretty much like staying home. And since we moved to the suburbs, driving into Austin seems like Death Race 2000. So even though Domy Books is less than 20 miles from my house, I hadn’t been in three years or so.

Domy Books, 9/20/70
But Mr Oddbooks urged me to haul my carcass out of the house and off to Domy we went. Domy Books is an alternative arts and culture book store and art space. Perhaps it is a good thing I can’t go there much because when I do go, I spend unseemly amounts of money. It’s a visually appealing space.

Part of one of the art exhibits on display currently.
Domy Books, 9/20/70

I don’t know from art, however. I mostly go for the books.
Domy Books, 9/20/70

So many beautiful books.
Domy Books, 9/20/70

Domy Books, 9/20/70
It’s one of those spaces where you can never look enough. I feel like I never have enough time to get a handle on all that is on offer there. And I think I don’t look as much as I should because just a quick scan can cost me a couple hundred bucks. A deep look would likely require a bank loan.

The manager, a friendly and very knowledgeable man named Russell, turned me on to a couple of new strange writers and when I told him I maintained this site, he even offered to do a weird book tour for me if I gave him a heads up so he could organize it. I definitely plan to take him up on this offer once I have gathered sufficient money to take another Domy splurge. I guarantee you there is no way I would have the strength to go on such a tour and not, and forgive the rude parlance, blow my wad.

So Austinites, I heartily encourage you to check out Domy. It’s a place to find ‘zines, high and fringe art books, fringe graphic novels, amazing photography compendiums, vinyl collectible dolls, alt culture non-fiction and local art. Russell was laid back and let us look, while offering help or comments when needed. It’s definitely a place where long-term browsing is allowed and encouraged. So visit if you can and if you can’t, you can shop online. I’ve got more pictures of the store on my Flickr account – just click on one of the pics above and wallow in the pretty art and pretty books.

And oh yeah, here’s what I bought (and I am only linking to them on Amazon because what I purchased does not appear to be on the Domy web store):
Richard Dadd: The Artist and the Asylum by Nicholas Tromans
Encyclopaedia of Hell: An Invasion Manual for Demons Concerning the Planet Earth and the Human Race Which Infests It by Martin Olson
Burn Collector: Collected Stories from One through Nine by Al Burian
Mr. Wilson’s Cabinet Of Wonder by Lawrence Weschler
True Norwegian Black Metal by Pete Beste

Brave New Books, Austin

This post originally appeared on I Read Odd Books

Okay, I have to admit I buy the bulk of my books online. Not only do I find what I am looking for but I also don’t have to deal with disapproving glances from hipper-than-thou clerks who can barely restrain themselves from sighing as they see if they can order David Icke from the distributor. There are locally-owned book stores in Austin, Texas, but I’ve come to dislike BookPeople because they harass me to check my purse every time I go in (I could be naked and carrying a change purse and I’d be asked to check all my belongings at the front desk). Ever since FringeWare died a decade ago, I haven’t had a local store that I really like, a place where I can get my odd topics on without being subject to snerts for displaying a lack of intellectual snobbery or apparently being such a crime risk I have to leave my wallet, check book and car keys with a stranger in order to have the privilege of shopping.

So when Mr. Oddbooks discovered that Brave New Books has been operating in Austin for 4 years, I was annoyed that I had not heard of them, but I am also a hermit so it comes as little surprise. Dubious, I agreed to check the place out and am glad I did. In fact, I was so pleased that I may start trying to visit other small book stores around Texas and beyond. Or I may not. I’m a notorious flake. But you never know.

Brave New Books stocks titles that would appeal to those of us with interests in the fringe, lunatic or otherwise, as well as maintaining a nice little DVD section. The store also runs films in a back room, and hosts discussions on relatively diverse topics. On Saturday, July 24, there will be a discussion about the Templars and Christopher Columbus. Leaving my home two weekends in a row seems arduous to me because the only thing I hate worse than leaving my house is leaving my house, but I may well try to attend.
Brave New Books, Austin, Texas

I asked the owner, Harlan Dietrich, to tell me what book in the store he felt I needed to read. Because he is not the indiscriminate conspiracy nut that I am, he recommended The Creature from Jekyll Island: A Second Look at the Federal Reserve by G. Edward Griffin. I had heard some buzz around this book but am sometimes mentally lazy, preferring to read easier, more salacious sorts of books (evidenced by the ones I selected on my own and by the bulk of what I review here) and likely would not have purchased it had he not recommended it.

I also purchased:
War Against the Weak: Eugenics and America’s Campaign to Create a Master Race by Edwin Black
The Illuminati: Facts & Fiction by Mark Dice
Apocalypse Waiting To Happen, The Plagues That Threaten Us All by Dr. John Coleman
Liquid Conspiracy: JFK, LSD, the CIA, Area 51 and UFOs by George Piccard
And, best of all, the last copy of 9-11 Descent into Tyranny: The New World Order’s Dark Plans to Turn Earth into a Prison Planet by local hero, Alex Jones, whom I sometimes mock, but love nonetheless.

And though I am linking to my Amazon account via some of the above links, I only do so when the book I purchased there is not on Brave New Books’ online ordering system or if I know I got the last copy and linking to it could cause the store some hassle. So you can shop there even if you don’t live in Austin – browse the site’s selection as well as their events section. It appears that this store, unlike some of the other independent book stores in town, is contributing to the community with free lectures and a space to watch films. Though I am laughably the worst person to be encouraging community involvement since my own community mainly involves simply the two levels in my own home, I think such engagement is to be lauded and supported. There was a lively political discussion taking place around the front desk while we were there, and the whole vibe of the place just suited me. I encourage you to shop there.

Brave New Books, Austin, Texas