about us:


Many thanks from everyone at Joseph Fox Bookshop to our loyal customers and the many new visitors who have supported us during this crisis. By order of the Governor of Pennsylvania we are closed to the public until further notice. As a result, we will not be able to process orders in store or provide a pickup option currently. However, we are able to fulfill online orders, shipped directly from our distributor. Please use the "Shop our Store" link in the upper right.

We have received a number of inquiries about purchasing gift certificates for use when we reopen. This is available online at https://www.foxbookshop.com/joseph-fox-gift-certificate and as an option in the "Shop Our Store" menu. Also for lovers of indie bookstores, we recommend this site: https://saveyourbookstore.com/

Please, everyone remain safe—we are looking forward to seeing you when we are permitted to reopen. 


Pulitzer Prize 2020 Winners (links below to purchase):

"The Nickel Boys" by Colson Whitehead 

"Sweet Taste of Liberty: A True Story of Slavery and Restitution in America" by W. Caleb McDaniel 

"Sontag: Her Life and Work" by Benjamin Moser 

"The Tradition" by Jericho Brown 

General Nonfiction
"The Undying: Pain, Vulnerability, Mortality, Medicine, Art, Time, Dreams, Data, Exhaustion, Cancer, and Care" by Anne Boyer 
"The End of the Myth: From the Frontier to the Border Wall in the Mind of America" by Greg Grandin                                     

Joseph Fox Bookshop was established in 1951 as a family-owned and -operated retailer of fine architecture books. Since then, we have expanded our purview to include all genres - with an emphasis on trade fiction and nonfiction, architecture, art, small press, and international literature. We proudly provide books for the Free Library of Philadelphia's Author Events series, which brings some of the biggest names in literature, academia, and politics to the city of brotherly love.

It has been our joy to bring books to Philadelphia for the past sixty years. We hope to see you in our store sometime soon!

1724 Sansom Street - Philadelphia, PA 19103

Monday-Saturday 10:00-6:00 - Wednesdays until 7:00

215.563.4184        //       jfox1724@gmail.com

Joseph Fox, pictured above, founded the bookshop in 1951.

Why shop Indie?

When you shop at an independently owned business, your entire community benefits:

The Economy

Spend $100 at a local-owned business and $52 of that stays in the community

• Local businesses create higher-paying jobs for the community

The Environment

• Buying local means less transportation and a smaller carbon footprint

The Community

• Local retailers are your friends and neighbors—we support eachother

• More independents means more choice, more diversity, and a truly unique community


KWY recently produced this lovely piece about our shop! Listen to the podcast here and read more about the series it was part of — Bookin' It Indie — below !

For the book bound at heart and on foot, Bookin’ It Indie is touring Philly's independent bookshops with KYW Newsradio’s Brianna Bonds. Listen to the mini-series on hearPHILLY, KYW Newsradio and Visit Philly’s HD digital radio channel about what’s going on in the city. hearPHILLY can be found on WTDY-FM 96.5 HD3 and podcast


customer reviews:

"What a special place! Intimate, knowledgeable, friendly ... A rainy day kind of bookstore that is available everyday! But beware - you may lose yourself in their stacks!"

"Awesome little bookstore nestled in Downtown Philadelphia. The space is funky and fun and the selection is astonishingly good for its size. But what really stands out is the staff. Whoever was working on Oct 14 really deserves kudos (although it seemed like they were performing at the norm for this cool little shop). And by “whoever” I do indeed mean everyone, since I think everyone working there helped us at one time or another during our brief, 10 minute visit. I came in to pick up a single Lloyd Alexander book for my kid (which they had in two separate editions!) and left with four books, including one awesome recommendation for Daniel Pinkwater (spot on), directions to a great Philly cheesesteak around the corner, and all-around great vibe. THIS is why small independent bookstores need to be supported. Brilliant experience all around."

"Best bookstore in Philadelphia. Staff actually knows books."

"I recently moved to Philadelphia and have been on the hunt for a great bookstore. I stopped in here yesterday and was blown away by the quality of their selection. The store is small, but the owners clearly put a lot of thought into which books and authors they stock. You can tell when a bookstore is run by book lovers, and this is one of the best I've ever found. I was also impressed by how knowledgeable the staff was. I talked to one member of the staff about a literary critic's book I wanted that wasn't in stock and she told me about another one of his books that she loved. She convinced me to buy it, which is the first time I've bought a book on a seller's recommendation." 

"What a beautifully curated children's section! So many wonderful favorites and new ones too. You guys are a quiet slice of heaven in the city. I can't wait to come back for our next book selections."

"Truly a gem, unique among independent bookstores. Beautiful curated choices and always find something unique. Every time I'm in town it's a must visit for me...worth a stop if you're a voracious reader or just seeking something unique."

"Can’t believe I lived in Philly for six months before I happened across this gem in Center City."

"A lovely old-fashioned little bookstore, a place to browse and pick books that I'd never come across shopping  in a chain store or online. Being able to take a book from a shelf and read a few pages is so much better. Also the people who work there are very knowledgeable and helpful and ready to suggest a book. So much nicer than a chain store."

"Artfully chosen selection of books. I always find something appealing. The staff is knowledgeable and friendly, too."