Sunday, March 25, 2012

Used books

My lovely wife and I drove to a good used book store. There doesn’t seem to be as many of them around as their used to be. I wonder of that’s the reason used book prices seem to have firmed up as of late.

Sure, it’s still possible to find used books on-line for next to nothing. Once the cost of shipping is added in, the price jumps up quite a bit. As we see transportation fuels going up in price that can only get worse.

Perhaps the remaining used bookstores recognize the changing conditions and have acted accordingly.

Of course, my observations are “statistically insignificant.” However, if my readers have noticed the same thing, maybe I’m onto something.

I’ve purchased used books on-line, a fair number of them. Those books were out of print and I felt fortunate to be able to use the power of the Internet to search them out. Price wasn’t as big a factor as just being able to locate them.

While it’s great to be able to order a specific book on-line, nothing beats wandering the shelves of a good used bookstore. That’s where you find treasures you weren’t looking for. Today I picked up some titles from authors I’ve enjoyed in the past, but wasn’t familiar with the specific titles in the store. Some had been out of print for a long time, but others might even still be available. Had I not seen them on the shelves, I would not have known to order them.

Another great thrill is discovering authors I’ve never read before, often in fields of literature I don’t usually read. Since the books are used and the price is lower than new, I’m more willing to take a chance. That’s how some of my new favorite writers are discovered. The writer’s benefit as I’m more likely to buy their new works.

My wife and I would sure hate to see any more used bookstores disappear. For the serious reader, they are like vaults of hidden treasures.



  1. So when are you gonna publish some more books so people can stumble upon your stories?

  2. Working on it Adam. No, really.

  3. Local used book stores cater to the romanance novel trade, 99% of the books are that 'stuff'. When I get into the big town, Half Price Books gets some attention - yep, prices have risen a mite. The space between the stacks have increased as well - less books.