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Off Topic > The joy of the second hand book shop!

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message 1: by Jo (new)

Jo Weston (joster) | 1697 comments Mod
I have to share a real bookshop lovers moment!

We have a gorgeous little second hand book shop in our town. Yesterday, I went in with the children just for a browse and for just over ten quid, we came out with The Magic Faraway Tree Collection for my daughter, a fabulous hard back book about Submarines for my son Submarines: War Beneath The Waves and not one, but TWO of my challenge reading books in paperback for me - The Fault in Our Stars and The Death Instinct.

Seriously made my day...


message 2: by A.L. (new)

A.L. Butcher (alb2012) | 62 comments Second hand book shops are great:) Last time I went in one I came out with an empty purse but a full bag:)


message 3: by Elizabeth (new)

Elizabeth (cramptonhodnet) I love browsing in second hand bookshops, so much so that when I got married we had our honeymoon in Hay On Wye!!!


message 4: by Paul (new)

Paul (halfmanhalfbook) | 5458 comments Mod
Perfect place for a honeymoon! There is a great one in Bridport, called Wild and Homeless Books.


message 5: by Elizabeth (new)

Elizabeth (cramptonhodnet) I must check that one out Paul next time I'm in Bridport.


message 6: by Moore (new)

Moore | 19 comments I'm a huge fan of Oxfam books, wherever they may be you always find something. I often spend my lunch hour in the one on Strutton Ground in Victoria!


message 7: by Paul (last edited Mar 12, 2014 06:12AM) (new)

Paul (halfmanhalfbook) | 5458 comments Mod
Swanage has an oxfam book shop. Normally a good selection of books in there


message 8: by Moore (new)

Moore | 19 comments We bought the kids books in there on holiday two years ago Paul. One had a fire brigade siren sound on it, that went off in the luggage all the way home in the car ... Never again!!!


message 9: by Paul (new)

Paul (halfmanhalfbook) | 5458 comments Mod
Have you not tried the 'oh dear the batteries have run out', shortly after removing them? Do you live in Dorset too?


message 10: by Moore (new)

Moore | 19 comments No, London me. Love camping in Swanage though! But yes, learnt my lesson bout the batteries, have also deployed the 'oh dear can't seem to find it' distraction technique....


message 11: by Elizabeth (new)

Elizabeth (cramptonhodnet) My mother in law lives in Swanage so perhaps I'll go and investigate that one next time we visit. She's an avid book reader too so probably knows it.


message 12: by Paul (new)

Paul (halfmanhalfbook) | 5458 comments Mod
Another I frequent is the Dorset Book Exchange, now in West Moors. He will accept any book that you take in and give you credit for it. You then get 50% off the books on the shelves. This is an old link:

http://www.thisisdorset.co.uk/Phoenix...


message 13: by Nicola (new)

Nicola (nicola1) | 61 comments I'm on my way to Barter Books in Alnwick tonight :D :D


message 14: by Anna (new)

Anna (justanna) | 145 comments was at a summer fete on Saturday, ginormous book stall (had it's own hall!) at the end the were 10 for €5. Oh the joy.


message 15: by Jen (new)

Jen (jefnerf) | 369 comments Mod
I still haven't been to Barter Books! However I do frequent our local St Oswald's charity shop as they do 3 for £2 on paperbacks!


message 16: by Sophie (new)

Sophie There are good Oxfam and Weldmar Hospice book shops in Dorchester.


message 17: by Elizabeth (new)

Elizabeth (cramptonhodnet) I've picked up as some gems from the charity shops around Gillingham, but the prices in BHF in Shaftesbury are ridiculously high.


message 18: by A.L. (new)

A.L. Butcher (alb2012) | 62 comments I used to work in a bargain book shop. We got first dibs on books and a discount.... bad, very very bad;)

I got this wonderful art book (Ok I know nothing about art but I do like to look at it). It was huge, must have been a foot across with all these wonderful prints. Anyway the spine was bent so it was a bit of a funny shape and we could't really sell it for a halfway decent price, I think I ended up paying about 50p.

Talking of annoying toys the very irritating Elvis Santa display model had a nasty accident come January. It ....fell into a mallet. Really people who design these things are sadists!


message 19: by Elizabeth (new)

Elizabeth (cramptonhodnet) I'm feeling very pleased with myself today for getting Strange Meeting Strange Meeting by Susan Hill by Susan Hill from a charity shop for £1.00.

Sadly it's going to have to wait a little while until I've read some more of my challenge books, but can't wait!


message 20: by Nicola (new)

Nicola (nicola1) | 61 comments Jen wrote: "I still haven't been to Barter Books! However I do frequent our local St Oswald's charity shop as they do 3 for £2 on paperbacks!"

you will love Barter Books! Go there right now!!


message 21: by [deleted user] (new)

I used to have an ambition to own a second hand bookshop with a café attached; there used to be just such a shop in Holmfirth near to where I live. We used to go regularly when I was a teenager.

I think that I was unduly influenced by a TV drama years ago when a character worked in a second hand bookshop and she said that she spent all day reading, occasionally pausing to serve a customer or feed the cat!

I fear that was not a very realistic picture of running a bookshop ;)

Despite several holidays in Northumberland, I've never been to Barter Books. I must get myself there.


message 22: by Franciszek (new)

Franciszek It was a second hand bookshop that got me into reading and running. As i managed to pick up a really good copy off Born To Run for 25p. Best 25p i have ever spent.


message 23: by Elizabeth (new)

Elizabeth (cramptonhodnet) Katherine wrote: "I used to have an ambition to own a second hand bookshop with a café attached; there used to be just such a shop in Holmfirth near to where I live. We used to go regularly when I was a teenager.

I..."


That sounds like my idea of the perfect job :) I always wanted to have a second hand book shop too! With cafe attached would be even better.


message 24: by Sam H (new)

Sam H  Arnold (samharnold) I love second hand book shops but as these have started dwindling in our area I have started using websites for second hand book swapping.


message 25: by [deleted user] (new)

Although I recognise the convenience of the internet for book buying, I can't help feeling a little sad about the demise of so many book shops especially second hand ones.

There is no enjoyment like browsing amongst actual book shelves with the hope that you might unearth an absolute gem.


message 26: by Hailie (new)

Hailie | 4 comments I love second hand bookshops! I get the books I want for half the price of what Barnes and Noble charge!


message 27: by Jojobean (new)

Jojobean I love second hand book shops but sadly where I live in New York there are virtually none. There is 1 that I go to but they don't have a big selection of the kind of book I read. :( I usually shop for second hand books on Amazon.com and buy new books at Barnes and Noble. I live about 20 minutes away from Manhattan which I'm sure has second hand book shops somewhere but I haven't been able to look around with work and all.


message 28: by Mack (new)

Mack Can't even explain the feeling I get when I've been looking for a book forever or when the only way I could have the book was to order it from a site that is super expensive and I happen to walk by a second han shop and find the book I've been looking for, for a really good price!


message 29: by Bobbi Jo (new)

Bobbi Jo (moon_petal) | 34 comments I love going into second hand book shops. Unfortunately there aren't any close to me anymore.


message 30: by Liz (new)

Liz Brown | 13 comments THERE IS HALF-PRICE BOOK STORE NEAR ME. I FOUND A BOOK I HAVE BEEN LOOKING FOR ,THE PLAQUE OF DOVES BY LOUISE ERDERICH AND WAS THRILLED, IT DIDN,T COST MUCH AND THAT IS WHY I LOVE USED BOOK STORES. I CAN USUALLY FIND A BOOK I HAVE BEEN LOOKING FOR.


message 31: by Jo (new)

Jo Weston (joster) | 1697 comments Mod
And I went in the same shop again today, and came out with Any Human Heart by William Boyd PLUS The Lifeboat by Charlotte Rogan . So pleased!

I was actually looking for The Colour Purple as I had a last minute (late!) urge to read it for the readalong but sadly, they did not have it.


message 32: by Elizabeth (new)

Elizabeth (cramptonhodnet) I've read The Lifeboat - it's very good. Hope you enjoy it.

I'm determined to hang onto my copy of The Color Purple this time (I lost a previous copy - loaned to a friend), otherwise I'd offer to forward it on to you. I wonder if there's anyone else on here who is willing to let you have their copy?


message 33: by Jen (new)

Jen (jefnerf) | 369 comments Mod
I only have an ebook copy if that's any use to any one?


message 34: by Jo (new)

Jo Weston (joster) | 1697 comments Mod
Thank you ladies. I am actually ordering a used copy on Amazon or Ebay for a couple of quid.... may not get to read it straight away but keen to keep vaguely up with our lovely Group Reads!


message 35: by John (new)

John  Ashtone (johnashtone) | 8 comments I too looked at starting and running a 2nd Hand bookshop, I was under no illusion about how much work is involved, having worked for W.H. Smiths and also run a market stall selling books.

However it was not to be, it was only late on I found that the trick was to sell to the trade, so advertised prices were only a guide, and then you discounted, to the trade, so your mark up had to reflect this.

I also use Oxfam, there is one in Headingley, and another over at Ilkely, however alas and alack I fear it is Oxfam who have led to the death of other 2nd hand bookshops, especially the independent.

How do you compete against a company that gets its stock free, and pays reduced Council Rates, and has staff who work for expenses?

Mind you the paid staff at Oxfam are well paid, certainly more than me, but then it is a charity?


message 36: by A.L. (new)

A.L. Butcher (alb2012) | 62 comments Yes some of the Oxfam book shops are good. I used to work in a bookshop but it was one of those remainder ones. I am not sure I have it in my to running a shop like that. I doubt there is much money in it:(


message 37: by Elizabeth (new)

Elizabeth (cramptonhodnet) So many bookshops seem to be closing down these days. I heard a rumour that the bookshop in our town - Gillingham - is closing down. It's a remainder one, but quite a good one.

I hope the rumour isn't true because that will mean we have nothing (apart from charity shops) anywhere nearer than Shaftesbury.


message 38: by Kathy G. (new)

Kathy G. The used store I like the most is a Goodwill that has just books and not clothes and things. It is wonderful. The books are now 1.29 (Amer. Dollars) so I'm not sure what that would be in Eng. but it's the best deal here in U.S. I spend way too much and can't help myself.


message 39: by John (new)

John  Ashtone (johnashtone) | 8 comments Kathy G.

I spend way too much and can't help myself.

We are talking about books, that sentence doesn't make sense to me whatsoever, Books, spending too much, surely you mean you wish you earned more so that you could feed yourself or buy some clothes lol.

$1.29 works out at roughly .85p which is good value.


message 40: by Kathy G. (new)

Kathy G. Ha Ha
Yes--- well--- how can someone spend too much on books?
When they have boxes and boxes already---

I know--
It's never too much.
It's an unmitigated thrill!


message 41: by Paulfozz (last edited Aug 11, 2013 12:25AM) (new)

Paulfozz Katherine wrote: "Although I recognise the convenience of the internet for book buying, I can't help feeling a little sad about the demise of so many book shops especially second hand ones.

There is no enjoyment li..."


It certainly is a far better experience, in my opinion, wandering the shelves of a good bookshop rather than browsing a web page. I guess if you just want to 'consume' books then the Internet is a more efficient way to go about it, and I do occasionally still buy new books online, but I'd far rather spend time wandering around in secondhand bookshops - you really never know what you might find, and browsing the racks often turns up obscure books you might never find using a search on a website.

I guess it's the hunter/gatherer thing. It definitely feels more rewarding to find a book in this way - I remember the thrill of working my way through a fantastic labyrinthine bookshop in Suffolk and finding a Gerald Durrell book hidden away in a corner with a full-page inscription by Gerald and Lee - I certainly don't get that excitement when I click 'buy'!


message 42: by Bionic Jean (new)

Bionic Jean (bionicjean) Am I going to get lynched in this thread if I tell Paul that quite a few of Gerald Durrell's books have just gone down to £1.79 each on Kindle? First they were all Penguins (and we all know how overpriced Penguin ebooks are)then Bello reissued 15 of them as ebooks at £2.39, and now they're even cheaper for a while.

The downside is that I've only found one which includes the original line-drawings. And of course they're not "real" books. But I do feel there's a place for both.

I too have always loved second-hand bookshops, and am very sad when I go back to a town and find they no longer have any. Charity shops too, as I've said in another thread. It's so great when you can buy a book in a library sale, read and enjoy it, then donate it to a charity shop which promptly puts a price on up to ten times that which you paid at the library sale! I'm always doing that! And it's still usually a bargain for the purchaser as well.


message 43: by Bionic Jean (new)

Bionic Jean (bionicjean) But I've just realised that most of my "real book" purchases are also over the Internet nowadays. There's a company called "Better World" which only seems to have ex-library books and their profits go to a literacy charity. As they're world-wide the selection is vast - and I find, say, a Large Print ex-library book from Canada dropping through my letterbox. I get far more choice of the Large Print which I need this way. (But when I subsequently donate the to the charity shops the mark-up is not so great....)


message 44: by Grey (last edited Aug 11, 2013 07:46AM) (new)

Grey Wolf | 35 comments Where I live, the book shops are either charity shops with a large book section, or Oxfam Books. There is of course Waterstones, but I don't know of any other book shops, independent new books or second hand, at all. The newsagents and Smiths of course sell SOME books, and there is The Works which can be very good, but dedicated book shops, new or second hand, no longer seem to exist in the way that they used to.


message 45: by John (new)

John  Ashtone (johnashtone) | 8 comments Jean wrote "Am I going to get lynched in this thread if I tell Paul that quite a few of Gerald Durrell's books have just gone down to £1.79 each on Kindle? First they were all Penguins (and we all know how overpriced Penguin ebooks are)then Bello reissued 15 of them as ebooks at £2.39, and now they're even cheaper for a while"

Obviously I can't speak on behalf of Paul, but I suspect going by his posting you wouldn't get lynched at all, his point was that the Durrell book was signed by the author, not something you would get with an Ebook download lol.

I am just rummaging through a few old threads and getting ready to sally forth into Wakefield for my weekly exploration of the charity shops, and coming back laden with goodies.

Last week's buys were a large format biography of Leeds artist Atkinson Grimshaw and a 'B' format paperback The Time Traveller's.
Guide to Medieval England: A Handbook for Visitors to the Fourteenth Century


The Atkinson Grimshaw was well buried, but also superb, it has a lot of his stuff I had never seen.

British Heart foundation is the one that usually comes up trumps, but the others are always worth a peek.


message 46: by Grey (new)

Grey Wolf | 35 comments Passed Oxfam Books in Swansea the other day just as they were opening, and the Postman was taking lots of sacks of books OUT. Any idea where they go to? Do they get sent to other charity shops or abroad, or are they destined to be pulped?


message 47: by Bionic Jean (new)

Bionic Jean (bionicjean) John - I just meant the principle really - me recommending ebooks on a thread devoted to "the joys of the second-hand bookshop" is a bit beyond the pale really!

I envy you your Atkinson Grimshaw book. That definitely would NOT be the same on Kindle! His work is so atmospheric. I discovered him years ago (I was Sheffield born and bred.)

Grey - maybe each charity shop varies? I suppose I'd expected some of Large Print books would end up in hospitals/Homes when I've donated to a hospice shop. Or if it's a large concern like Oxfam to be distributed around the branches. I know for a fact that some of our local charity shops do "swaps" of goods with other charities, as one helper in there told me and he works in both! Then again someone on one of these threads said that she worked in a charity shop and the books just got pulped if they didn't sell.

Part of me thinks I want to know what they do so so I can choose who to donate to. Don't want to lug loads of nice books up there if they're just going to be pulped!


message 48: by Grey (new)

Grey Wolf | 35 comments True, I guess I had naiively thought that if the books were in good condition then the Oxfam Book Shop would sell them. I guess they cherry-pick the best ones, and perhaps pass on the rest to their normal charity shops, though these would be getting their own donations direct as well.


message 49: by Gail (new)

Gail | 126 comments Speaking to a charity shop volunteer about donating books and they said that there is no demand for hardback fiction. Consequently they only want paperbacks. Also there is a huge price difference between the various charity shops on pb fiction. Our local Age Concern is 90p and Oxfam is £1.99 upwards!


message 50: by Elizabeth (new)

Elizabeth (cramptonhodnet) I love the charity shops in Wadebridge - 99p each for 2 books this week.

I don't buy from our local BHF shop because they charge £2.50 upwards for a paperback which is almost the price of a new book.


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