FORT WORTH -- Rosemarie Clarke clung to her books on Egypt and Peru as she browsed the travel section Friday at Borders in Fort Worth's Chapel Hill shopping center on Hulen Street.
"Apart from travel, most of my money goes on books," Clarke said.
Clarke, of Weatherford, is upset that Borders is closing. She often shops there after going to Central Market and World Market. She doesn't buy books online, nor does she want a device to read digitally.
"I prefer a book," she said.
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Clarke is a book publisher's dream. But consumers like her are dwindling as they increasingly turn to the Internet to buy books or use an electronic device such as an iPad or Nook to read e-books.
Borders, which helped launch the book superstore 40 years ago in Ann Arbor, Mich., fell prey to the changing market and was forced into bankruptcy this year. It started liquidation sales Friday at its 399 remaining stores, offering items at 10 to 40 percent off, after failing to receive a bid to keep operating. Other Tarrant County stores set to close are in the Arlington Highlands shopping center and at Dallas/Fort Worth Airport. Borders stores in Colleyville, Burleson and Lewisville closed earlier this year.
Books-A-Million, based in Birmingham, Ala., is bidding to buy leases and assets of 30 Borders stores, including one in San Antonio.
Early Friday afternoon, the Chapel Hill store was busy, but checkout lines moved quickly. No one seemed to leave with large purchases, likely waiting for the discounts to grow as the sale goes on.
Bill and Janell Curtis of Fort Worth and their daughters, Crystal, 24, and Catherine, 21, shopped after lunch. Each had specific topics and authors to search for. Crystal Curtis was going to look for history-related books, but once in the store, she found several manga Japanese comic books.
Bill Curtis said he is disappointed that Borders is closing, even though he buys books for his iPad.
"Not me," Crystal Curtis said. "I like to have a solid, hard book in my hands."
Janell Curtis found hardbacks of three Clive Cussler books she didn't own. "This is more books of his than I've seen" in a store, she said.
Ralph Massey of Azle, who spent his day off at the store, and Marvin Tills of Fort Worth found a quiet spot in the back and sat on the floor to look through books they were considering buying. Both have gift cards they need to use.
"I grabbed a few books to see if they're worth the little bit of space I have left on a bookshelf," Massey said.
"I was expecting greater discounts," said Tills, who walked about a half-mile to the store. He was thinking of walking back home and ordering from the Borders website.
The article includes information from The Associated Press.
Sandra Baker, 817-390-7727