Chicks On Lit discussion

where do you get your books?

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message 1: by Cathie (new)

Cathie (countrygarden) | 95 comments i was wondering if you mostly buy your books, visit the library, hunt garage sales, trade and why? i LOVE the library and most of the time don't read a book twice so i check a lot of mine out. i love to hunt garage sales and used book stores for the great bargain, 5 gently used books for the price of a new one is great. and then there is the fun of browsing the bookstore and finding that book of short stories i just have to have and i will read now and then. how about you?

message 2: by Kristen (new)

Kristen (kristen120378) I typically got mine from the library (lack of space and I'm cheap), but I recently started and now I do most of my "book getting" on there. This way I own the books and I'm getting rid of ones I've read.

message 3: by Brittany (new)

Brittany (missbrittany) | 336 comments Those I buy come from Borders, but I have decided to only buy those by my favorite authors, or those I have read before and would like a copy of. The rest are usually from the county library or the hospital library.

message 4: by LinBee (new)

LinBee I work in the library, so I get mine mostly from there. Also, when people donate books to us, we usually sell them for $.50 to $1.00, so I get them from there too. Also, I by from Amazon if there is something that I HAVE to have.

message 5: by Cathie (new)

Cathie (countrygarden) | 95 comments kristen, i will have to check out bookmooch, have never seen that site - (tried to get in this morning but my computer is pokey for some reason- lost patience. linda- i bet working for the library is great, i volunteered at the library for a bit before i moved and it was fun. i'd love to work at a book store. love being around books...

message 6: by Holli (new)

Holli The only books I buy and keep are the ones from my favorite authors and I'm lucky to have my mom buy all of my James Patterson and Danielle Steel books for me. The rest of the books I read I get them from the library....and if I find one I absolutely have to have I ask for them as gifts or I get them from Amazon.

message 7: by Spencer (new)

Spencer (spencerafreeman) | 143 comments I get my books mostly from Borders. I have a thing about owning books... I love collecting them and being able to flip through pages and reread favorite parts. Plus, they have awesome coupons if you become a member (which is free). I also sometimes get books from amazon, which can be pretty cheap ($0.01).

message 8: by Nancy (new)

Nancy | 1274 comments Oh!! I too have an obsession about owning books. I do weed out and borrow some things. But there are so many that I consider real classics, even of modern literature. I am happy to loan etc. I have to admit that I get most of my books from Borders or Amazon (used is fine). Usually with a coupons or buy-one-get-one-half price. My work schedule is so intense that the public library is not long enough lending time. And then I read too many books at once... *sigh*

message 9: by Spencer (new)

Spencer (spencerafreeman) | 143 comments I feel you, Nancy.. :) gotta love buy-one-get-one-half price, three-for-two, but-three-get-one-free, or any other coupon deal!

message 10: by Lori (new)

Lori I'm with everyone on Borders! Their free membership makes is hard to ignore those little coupons and discounts that come out almost every week! I have a thing about filling up my bookshelves--they make great decorations. :) Anything I buy comes from there; otherwise, I look to borrowing my my reader friends or the library.

message 11: by Lori (new)

Lori Cathie wrote: "i was wondering if you mostly buy your books, visit the library, hunt garage sales, trade and why? i LOVE the library and most of the time don't read a book twice so i check a lot of mine out. i ..."

Cathie someone told me through the grapewine that Borders lets their employees borrow books as long as they keep them intact--nice employee benefits huh?

message 12: by Cathie (new)

Cathie (countrygarden) | 95 comments Lori wrote: "Cathie wrote: "i was wondering if you mostly buy your books, visit the library, hunt garage sales, trade and why? i LOVE the library and most of the time don't read a book twice so i check a lot o..." very nice benefits! i haven't heard of the borders membership, coupons and all that good stuff. is that online? i usually go into my local borders, but must have missed that.

message 13: by Samantha (new)

Samantha (samaranthine) | 10 comments I heart Borders too!!! I almost got a job working for them but they would have paid way too low. I do love books but not enough to live on rice and beans!

In Texas we have the most amazing thing ever... it's called Half Price Books. It is the... most... wonderful... used book store EVER. I am there almost twice a week and if I can't find something there then I will try again another night, then if I really can't find it i'll break down and buy it full price. I love libraries but the ones here are so underfunded it's tragic. They only have beat up Danielle Steels and old textbooks, it's horrible. Plus I think it's important to make your own library to pass down to your children which is why i love hardbacks most.

message 14: by Jackie (last edited Jan 29, 2009 03:00PM) (new)

Jackie (findingjackie) | 214 comments There are no good used book stores here and no library close to me, so I buy new (mostly). Every once in a while, I'll find good buys at yard sales or Good Will but not often.

We have a book store chain in the SE called Books A Million. You can go into the store or buy from their website. It's where I get most of my books. They are usually cheaper than Amazon online, especially with their discount card.

I also use I'm just addicted to that site.

message 15: by Sheila , Supporting Chick (new)

Sheila  | 3485 comments Mod
I live in a rural area, and the local library branch is only open 2 days a week (Tues & Thurs) from 10AM to 6PM, so I don't get a lot there. Plus, it is impossible to get new (or even newer) releases, since to try to reserve there are alway 100 people with their name on the list ahead of you.
If there is a brand new release I really want I will usually buy from Amazon. I also buy a lot of books from, and get a lot of great deals that way. If you wait a month or so after a book is released you can often get is or half price there. I also started selling some of my newer books on Sold 8 books this month for a total of $76! I also just recently signed up for paperbackswap after it was mentioned here. Looks like that will be a great place to get older books. I've mailed 3 books in 2 weeks, and ordered some back. But it doesn't look like it is easy to get new releases there.

message 16: by Courtney (new)

Courtney (chamilton12) I mostly get my books from BookMooch. I am addicted to that site. I rarely read a book more than once and have started reading books that my Mom & SIL (who I trade with) don't want to read.

I also love Target's book selections. I like to go in there and write down titles of books that I want and then come home and add them to my BookMooch wish list!

message 17: by Lori (new)

Lori Cathie wrote: "Lori wrote: "Cathie wrote: "i was wondering if you mostly buy your books, visit the library, hunt garage sales, trade and why? i LOVE the library and most of the time don't read a book twice so i ..."

Oh yea, it's great. Go to for information. They sent coupons all the time, and all new releases are's the only way i can afford all of them!

message 18: by Holli (new)

Holli Samantha...we have Half Priced book stores here in Columbus OH too! Aren't they great?? I loved discovering that place and now I hit it up alot just to see what's there......

message 19: by Brittany (new)

Brittany (missbrittany) | 336 comments Jackie- I used to shop at BAM, too, but Borders' discounts beat BAM's by far. No membership fee, coupons 25-40% every week, and secret members-only sales once in a while. I'll never switch back!

message 20: by Tahleen (new)

Tahleen Aw, I love B&N! But I also work there... You can still get some pretty good coupons even if you're not a member. I don't like Borders haha.

message 21: by Jackie (new)

Jackie (findingjackie) | 214 comments Brittany,

There aren't any Borders or Waldensbooks stores near me. Waldens used to be my fave by far by they closed the only store they had in the area a few years ago. Borders is at least 1 1/2 away and the closest Waldens is an hour. /sadface

message 22: by Lori (new)

Lori Walker I usually buy from Borders (especially if I get a good coupon) or Amazon (I love the free shipping and how most of their books are marked down anyway). I'm not much of a library person because I really like owning my books, for some reason. But it's a habit I need to break because I spent so much money on books last year! There's also a used book store in my home town that's huge, so I'll attack it from time to time with a huge list. The only problem is that there are at least 3 places that many fictions books could be (classics, literature, and fiction) so it usually takes a long time and there's no guarantee they'll have anything on my list. Next time I hear of a library sale, I'm definitely hitting it up.

message 23: by Lisa Julianna (new)

Lisa Julianna (lisajulianna) | 80 comments I buy most of mine at Borders, Barnes and Noble, Amazon and the library when they have their book sales.

message 24: by Jenna (new)

Jenna | 4 comments I'm totally a Borders girl! I also get a lot of my books at Half Price Books - one is less than a mile from my house!

message 25: by Katie (new)

Katie (katieisallbooked) | 319 comments I have an insane amount of books right now, most of which came from BookCrossing. A friend and I also go to 2 or 3 big library book sales every year and bring home boxes full of books. As far as stores go I like Borders and Half Price Books, but neither of them are very close to me. That's probably a good thing. :)

message 26: by Elli (new)

Elli | 1 comments We do have some good book stores, but if I want to have my kind of book (fantasy, thriller, horror) I have to buy them via amazon. It is also much cheaper then in a German book store.
And unfortunately I do not have the time to go to the library.

message 27: by Brenda (new)

Brenda (gardengal) | 16 comments I have to admit I love to own my books. I don't even re-read books. I will lend them out but always make sure I get them back. I am not like this with other possessions, just my books. I live in Canada and tend to order books from Chapters, I also order from, they sell books and the prices are GREAT.

message 28: by Brianna (new)

Brianna | 5 comments Hello everyone. I just had to participate in this. I feel a little frustrated with this conversation...or a lot. There are many goodreads participants who work in the industry, own or work at independent bookstores, who politely refrain from hammering everyone with shameless self-promotion. We are here because we love books and love to talk about them, and it is completely depressing to hear your goodreads friends constantly talking about how loyal they are to the huge corporate chains that are playing such a pivotal role in the demise of the independents. Let's talk about books, not about our habits as consumers-what does amazon or borders have have to do with literature anyway? Nothing.

message 29: by Cathie (new)

Cathie (countrygarden) | 95 comments Lori wrote: "Cathie wrote: "Lori wrote: "Cathie wrote: "i was wondering if you mostly buy your books, visit the library, hunt garage sales, trade and why? i LOVE the library and most of the time don't read a b..." thanks lori! great weekend to you!

message 30: by Cathie (new)

Cathie (countrygarden) | 95 comments this is very fun learning all the places you can get books! i have a list of online sites to check out now. heard on the news that amazon was one who could actually say they made profits in the last quarter, several million in sales! yay for readers - who i am sure made up a good percentage of the sales. i think i placed three orders with them over the holidays (love the free shipping too)

message 31: by Brianna (last edited Jan 30, 2009 08:39AM) (new)

Brianna | 5 comments I don't think it's very fun. Amazon and Borders are not the only bookstores in the country. Many independents that are online also offer discounts and free shipping. Maybe you should check them out.

message 32: by Kristen (new)

Kristen (kristen120378) I, for one, think it's interesting to see where everyone shops. It gives me ideas of other ways to get my hands on a book I want. So what if people like B&N, Amazon and Borders. We shop other places too, they just aren't as ready-available as the big places.

Brianna, why don't you list places you like to get books so we can all go there and maybe change our places we buy books?

message 33: by Brianna (last edited Jan 30, 2009 08:57AM) (new)

Brianna | 5 comments Amazon, B&N and Borders use the same distribution system as every other independent. Brick and mortors are limited by their space. Online independents offer the same selection as the biggy's and, often times, at a better price.

So, as far as price, selection, and customer service are concerened independents win. Independents cannot compete with corporate America's advertising dollars.

Why don't I list the places I like to get books? I feel that self-promotion doesn't follow the spirit of this place--and I recognize that I've probably upset a few people. What would that be....anti-advertising? Maybe I have something there!

message 34: by Cathie (new)

Cathie (countrygarden) | 95 comments this was just meant to be a fun thread, i was curious to see where people got their books, no advertising or self promotion intended. i like to find new places.

message 35: by Lori (new)

Lori Brianna wrote: "I don't think it's very fun. Amazon and Borders are not the only bookstores in the country. Many independents that are online also offer discounts and free shipping. Maybe you should check them out."

I Brianna--what places do you shop? I love the local places in my town for used and privately owned new bookshops; however, I can't necessary recommend them to people outside my area because they're only where I live.

I'd love to hear any other suggestions you have for finding books, secret local treasures are just as fun! :)

message 36: by Tahleen (new)

Tahleen There are a bunch of cool second-hand bookstores in Ithaca, where I'm going to school. I really like Autumn Leaves, and there is one all the way up Rte. 13 called Pheonix Books that is in what used to be a barn. I love that place.

message 37: by Justine (new)

Justine (paperbackheart) I do most of my book shopping at Borders (love those coupons and we don't have Barnes and Noble here) or Amazon. Every once in a while I'll check out or the like and stock up. I have a pretty steady flow of books in and out due to paperbackswap and I just started going to the library again.

message 38: by Brianna (new)

Brianna | 5 comments Cathie wrote: "this was just meant to be a fun thread, i was curious to see where people got their books, no advertising or self promotion intended. i like to find new places. "

Hi Cathie. I totally understand and apologize for the rant. As the part owner of an independent online bookstore I am very keyed into the market. I see the announcements everyday of independents closing their doors, independents that offered deep discounts (better than any of the biggy's, including amazon), great selection, and answered their phones when people called. So why are they closing? Because very few people look for alternatives. How important is it for everyone to have a varied retail landscape, to support the companies that employ the people that they live near, to let your $$'s benefit the local community? How important is it for there to be choices for online shopping? Independents work hard, sink their own $ into their companies and want to service customers on a personal level.

message 39: by Tahleen (new)

Tahleen Brianna, I'd love to know other sites out there, especially if they have great discounts! If you don't feel comfortable giving out links here, where could I find information on them?

message 40: by Sheila , Supporting Chick (new)

Sheila  | 3485 comments Mod
Hi Brianna,
I can understand your frustration. But I will tell you the reason why I personally shop at Amazon for new release books, and not at local independent book stores.
Money. I want the best deal. I have yet to find an independent local bookstore that carries the books I want at a price as good as or better than I can get from amazon.
If you can tell me the name and website of an online independent that offers the same selection at a better price I will happily use them. But I haven't found it yet.
And as for going into a local independent bookstore, the closest independent bookstore is a 30 minute drive from my house. That is a lot of gas money. Then I go in looking for a book. I have some strange tastes in books I look for sometimes, so usually the independent will not have the book. Yes, they can order it for me, special order, full cost, come back in a week. That is another drive (more gas $) and I end up paying list price or close to it. I almost always find what I want, in stock, at amazon for big % off list price, with free shipping. It takes me just a minute to order it, and costs no gas money, not to mention several hours of my time driving back and forth to the book store.

I think in this day and age, with the availablility of books on the internet for great prices, it is just going to be hard for independents unless they come up with something great, some wonderful new idea, that is a huge advantage to the book buyer over shopping online.

message 41: by Brittany (new)

Brittany (missbrittany) | 336 comments I don't know how this thread turned into all this. I LOVE Borders because I get a discount on my books, they have a huge selection to chose from, and I have in-store or internet options for buying books and other items. Does my local independent bookstore offer any of that? No. They don't come close. Would I be more likely to shop there if they did? Maybe, maybe not- they are not as convenient a location. I'm sorry that the economy and big corporations' advertising have hindered your business, but your posts are not likely to convert anyone. If you don't like the discussion of "habits as consumers", you don't have to participate in the discussion. I agree with Sheila on this one.

message 42: by Cyndi (new)

Cyndi (chill77) Kristen wrote: "I, for one, think it's interesting to see where everyone shops. It gives me ideas of other ways to get my hands on a book I want. So what if people like B&N, Amazon and Borders. We shop other pl..."
I agree with Kristen. I don't think we're downing any of the independent bookstores. And the fact that we shop at the bigger stores doesn't make us bad people. Or the fact that we like to know where others shop.
I don't think there was any stress about where we should shop.

message 43: by Brianna (new)

Brianna | 5 comments Truce

message 44: by Suze (new)

Suze (suzed) | 68 comments Wow, I'm almost afraid to comment, but here goes: I buy almost all of my books *used* from Amazon. I read 3 books a week (usually), and that could get expensive! So, I have a huge wishlist on Amazon - I add books I want to read and wait till they come way down in price (like one penny, plus shipping), then buy a few. I do like to keep the books from my favorite authors, so those I buy new from bookstores or online from B&N or Amazon.

Bloomin’Chick (Jo) aka The Eclectic Spoonie (bloominchick) Kelly Jo, I couldn't have said it better myself.

I bought exclusively though independents until there were none left in this area (the one that is is very pricery and the staff is rude and therefore, I don't shop there) and I love Barnes & Noble. I order more from them online now because of the discounted prices and their coupons. I'm a B&N member. (I'm also disabled and not always able to get out like I'd like to and saving every little bit helps as does the online ordering/free shipping).

I try to use the library as much as possible to save money. I also pick up books for sale at the library now & again too. They're priced much like thrift shops. I donate books I don't keep either back to the library or to the senior apt house. (Or by giving them away here!)

message 46: by Tera, First Chick (new)

Tera | 2563 comments Mod
Im a library junkie

message 47: by Sheri (new)

Sheri | 4 comments I get them from the library and then, if I like one enough, I'll buy myself a special edition of it - and add it to my collection.

message 48: by Holli (last edited Jan 30, 2009 03:46PM) (new)

Holli I'm going to have to agree with Kristen and others up there when they say it was interesting to see where others buy books (chain, independent, or otherwise) and I didn't take it as anyone being down on independent stores. Its obviously a sore subject with you Brianna and I'm sorry that you don't want to self-promote your online bookstore. I would love to check it out...I see nothing wrong with else will we know about your store and what you offer? So please...feel free to share it with us....I'm sure others would like to check it out also!


message 49: by Jennifer W (new)

Jennifer W | 2175 comments Tera, I too am addicted to the local library. It's the biggest one I've ever had access to, and it's gorgeous and inviting. It also has a *huge* used book sale every spring and fall and I stock up like crazy at that.

Tahleen, I haven't had a chance to go to Autumn Leaves (shame on me, I know), and I've never had any luck at Pheonix Books, so I've stopped going. Perhaps I was looking in the wrong spot? I've never been able to find anything I've even heard of up there.

message 50: by Gwen (new)

Gwen | 2 comments I work at an large and really wonderful county library, so I get my books there. When I see something I want to read, I check it out, put my name on a waiting list, or if it is too "hot" right now, I'll wait until later. There is so much to read that I don't mind waiting until the book is not new. Although I do own a few books, it's not my thing to collect them. I would rather spend my money elsewhere and just borrow!

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