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Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Building your library

You don't know this about me, but I'm an avid bargain hunter.  I love finding ways to get the stuff I want but for less.  Oh, the joy!

I went to the library last night, and (of course) all the books I wanted were checked out.  

(Which makes me wonder, is there any centralized database that takes into account how often books are checked out? I know there are sources to track the SALE of books.  But as an author, wouldn't you be curious to see the stats on how often your book was checked out at libraries across the country?  I think this would be SO interesting. I wish I would have thought of this when I was at the library, I would have asked.)

But I digress.

As I was saying, the books I was looking for were all checked out, but my daughterling wasn't done amassing her collection, so I wandered out to the lobby where they sell books people donate or have been taken out of circulation.  A lot of them are NEW, and they use the proceeds to fund literacy programs.  The library is a great place to get relatively current books at great prices!

I also like checking out books at Goodwill.  It's harder to find current books, but it is a great place to go to build your home library at a good price!  The Goodwill stores around here sell books for 88 cents.  That's right.  88 cents.  Who cares if the books are a couple years old?

Cheap books and good causes, what's not to love?

Here are my purchases this week:

Hot Flash Club (88 cents). 

Meet Faye, Shirley, Marilyn and Alice: four women with skills, smarts, and secrets--all feeling over the hill and out of the race.  But in a moment of delicious serendipity, they meet and realize that they share more than raging hormones and lost dreams.  Now, as members of the Hot Flash Club, where the topics of motherhood, sex, and men are discussed with double servings of chocolate cake, they vow to help one another...and themselves.

The Da Vinci Code (yeah, I admit it, I've never read it...88 cents)

An ingenious code hidden in the works of Leonardo Da Vinci A desperate race through the cathedrals and castles of Europe.  An astonishing truth concealed for centuries...unveiled at last.

The Thieves of Heaven (I think I was in a spiritual conspiracy kind of mood...88 cents)
(This is an ARC!  the first I've ever seen up close and personal)

The most closely guarded treasure on Earth.  An explosive ancient secret. A breakneck journey into the heart of the Vatican.  

In a small, heavily fortified room just north of the Sistine Chapel, a master thief is about to strike. All he needs is an instant to steal the most important treasure in the Vatican museum: two antique keys--one gold, one silver--that protect the secret of salvation.

The Prodigal Project (88 cents)

On just another Sunday, a man joins a group of friends for a golf game.  A working mother, trying to balance career and home, skips weekly services.  An internet junkie scours the web looking for comforting news but finds only unrest.  Ordinary people who live their lives in an unsettled time, like most too overwhelmed by their own concenrs to register the groundswell of changes taking place everywhere--until the instant when millions around the world disappear.

Immediately, life after the Rapture becomes a chaotic battle for survival.  Into the void steps Azul Dante, the charismatic leader of the Prodigal Project. He shines a light in the darkness of the End times, his new world order representing a return to the promised land of the past.

This Body (88 cents)


eat pray love ($2...I know, it hurts once you get used to those 88 centers)
(I've been rather vocal about avoiding this book because it was so popular, but for $2 I'll add it to the library without feeling to hypocritical!)

In her early thirties, Elizabeth Gilbert had everything a modern American woman was supposed to want--husband, country home, successful career--but instead of feeling happy and fulfilled, she felt consumed by panic and confusion.  this wise and rapturous book is the story of how she left behind all these outward marks of success, and of what she found in their place. Following a divorce and a crushing depression, Gilbert set out to examine three different aspects of her nature, set against the backdrop of three different cultures: Pleasure in Italy, devotion in India, and on the Indonesian island of Bali, a balance between worldly enjoyment and divine transcendence.

Little Earthquakes ($2)

Becky is a plump, sexy chef who has a wonderful husband and baby girl, a restaurant that's received citywide acclaim--and the mother-in-law from hell.  Kelly is an event planner who's struggling to balance work and motherhood wile dealing with an unemployed husband who seems content to channel-surf for eight hours a day.  Ayinde's basketball superstar husband breaks her trust at her most vulnerable moment, putting their new family even more in the public eye.  Then there's Lia, a Philadelphia native who has left her Hollywood career behind, along with her husband, and a tragic secret to start her life all over again. 

One last note...

I will always be a bargain hunter, but lately I've been feeling a wee bit guilty about buying these used.  The poor authors aren't getting anything from the resell.  I've rationalized this a couple different ways.  

First, proceeds go to a good cause.  
Second, I think of this discount library-building as research.  I discover authors I wouldn't have found otherwise.  
Third, when I do find an author I love, I am likely to buy their next book new.  
Finally, I LIKE used books.  They seem friendlier, more inviting than a new book.  I always feel a little bad for creasing the spine on a new paperback...but with used books, it's been done for me.

How do you feel about someone buying your books second-hand?  Where do you get most of your books?


Bridge Marie said...

I used to only read new books, but then I got out of high school and had other things to pay for, heh, so I'm all about libraries now. And I don't think I could ever say no to books being resold for a good cause.

~Nicole Ducleroir~ said...

I love used books! Although, I hadn't thought about how selling used books may impact the author's/publisher's revenue. I've been swapping books with my friends and family members forever, so I guess paying a dollar for a used book doesn't seem that different to me. Plus, like you said, many of the sales benefit library literacy programs. I say: It's all good!

BTW, I've enjoyed corresponding with you by email. The problem we discussed is definitely resolved -- no red flags today!

Have a great day!

Wendy Ramer said...

If I tell you I absolutely devoured Eat, Pray, Love, you should understand so much about me after you read it yourself. Hope it touches you.

As for people recycling my books, I've gotten over it. It used to irk me to no end, but I now see the bigger picture so I'm okay with it.

Jen said...

Wow how awesome!!! I'm so jealous you got Eat, Pray, Love for $2!!! I just ordered my copy and it was $10... so now I'm hurting at the cost! Oh well I'm sure it will be worth it in the end.

Sounds like I need to go to the nearest Goodwill!

JustineDell said...

I am one of the tightest people in the world. I LOVE the library (and the little bookstore they have one the first floor). And the LOVE garage sales that have books! I got books this past weekend for 25 cents!! Woo hooo!


Jaydee Morgan said...

I buy both. If I find a used book that I love, I search out more by that author so I'm buying new as well.

I have a fondness for used books. There's something about them that pulls me more than the new ones. However, buying a brand new book is such a treat and so much fun.

Either way, build your library with books that you'll love to read over and over again :)

Stina Lindenblatt said...

I've bought used YA books ('cause that's all I read) from the library. You can't go wrong with a book for only 50 cents. But I've only bought a few. They rarely have ones that interest me.

Maribeth said...

I love used books. I will try different genres and authors for those prices.
Hardbacks for my shelves and paperbacks for my pocket!
I buy at used books store, Goodwill. Garage sales are great for new books.

Giggles and Guns

Talli Roland said...

I am a massiva library fan and I usually go there to stock up weekly. That being said, I'm conscious that what authors receive from PLR is so much less than sales, so I do try to buy books as much as my budget allows, too!

Janet Johnson said...

I love used books too. I don't have any for sale yet, but I like to think that I'll be happy it's being read and (hopefully) enjoyed. Good thoughts. And GREAT deals!

(I haven't read DaVinci Code either!)

Renae said...

I buy both, if I find a used book I like I get it, but I also buy new books by that author as well.

I just can't pass up a good bargain!

Carolyn V. said...

Whoa girl! You are a great bargin shopper! What great titles (I'm a little jealous.)

I'm totally fine buying my books second hand. I always check out the bargin books at the second hand store when I go there. I just love books. =)

Lindsay (a.k.a Isabella) said...

I do love the library and the odd used book. But I love buying books from the bookstore too. :)

Sandy Shin said...

I love new books, but sometimes, I buy them used, too, because of financial constraints. I hope to make up for it by buying lots of new books when I am actually working, with an income. :)

Lydia Kang said...

I don't buy used books, but I do go to the library. I feel guilty about not infusing the industry with my money, but I buy when I can, and it's probably more than I should!

Julie Musil said...

I love buying used books or checking them out at the library. I feel the same way you do about the authors. However, if I had a book published, I think I would be glad that someone was enjoying my story, even if I'm not getting paid.

Susan Kaye Quinn said...

I'm much more a contributor to the library book sale, than a purchaser, but I'm good with the idea of used books. It's amazing the range that you found (old vs. new)!

Stephanie Thornton said...

I keep hearing about Eat, Pray, Love, but haven't picked it up yet. It looks like you got some great bargains- I hope they're all fabulous reads!