You all know that my favorite website is Amazon.com. You also probably know that nothing makes me happier than spending a Saturday afternoon browsing the aisles of my neighborhood Barnes & Nobles. I love the excitement that comes with purchasing a new book. The new smell, as I flip through the book, is something the book nerd in me loves.
As much as I love a new book, used books have always held a special place in my heart. In college, I know I wasn’t the only student that preferred to buy the used textbook, if for no other reason than it was more cost-effective.
Used books, to me, have so much character. You can tell a lot about the previous owner with used books. Are the pages marked up, what passages are highlighted? Is the dust cover missing, is the spine still intact? A well-worn but sturdy book is always a good sign. I like to know that a book has been well cared for but that it was also read a few times.
It can be a little hard to find great used books online nowadays. I have bought my fair share on Amazon through independent sellers and have been somewhat satisfied. However, they don’t have everything and it can be hit or miss on other sites. A website that I love is Thriftbooks.com which I was introduced to after seeing Read In Colour tweet about the site. I vividly remember going on the site shortly thereafter and bought 15 books for under $50.00 – talk about a great deal!
When looking for older books, buying used is a great option. Sometimes I want the first edition with the original cover. If that means that I need to search a little harder for the book then so be it.
Let’s also be honest here: used books are great for those of us on a tight budget. There are times when we can’t spend $10 or $20 on a book and that is where our local used bookstore or online reseller comes in handy. Building a vast book collection doesn’t always mean spending tons of money. Sometimes you can spend less and still read more.
If you don’t trust the online retailers for used books, I’m sure there is at least one bookstore in your area that has used books. Let Google be your best friend; peek inside and peruse their selection in person.
While I will never stop pre-ordering books or going into my local bookstores to pick up a new book, used books hold a special place in my heart.