Sunday, June 9, 2013

Book Buying


Going into a bookstore is like entering a new world, one scented with ink and paper, coffee and tea, dust and wood. I could browse the literary and young-adult sections forever but at the end of the day, I could never purchase any of them. The trip usually results in me buying something from the clearance or the bargain bin. However, I have gone into a Barnes & Nobles or a Books-A-Million and walked out feeling angry about the prices. For all who buy books, we know that at the end of the day it all comes down to money. How much are we willing to spend on a book when we can buy it elsewhere for a better price?

Below, I have ranked the order in which I purchase my books as well as the sites and stores I frequently visit or find the best deals:

You can find free books at your local library and online through give-a-way sites and e-books:

Free Book Friday- It is site that gives you the option to enter a “raffle” to win a free book in any of the four categories.

Get Free Books- It is a site that allows you to legally download free books.

Online Alternatives

You can find a multitude of discounted books! I use this to find a majority of my books (I almost never use any e-book format but I do own a kindle for schooling purposes). I would consider these the best options for those who like to have a physical copy of the book:

Best Bargain Books- It is a site that guarantee’s each book to start out at 60-80 percent off its original price. The fault is that books are almost always out of stock and you do pay around $3’s in shipping.

Better World Books- It is an organization dedicated to improving literacy world-wide. It has a “bargain bin” where you can find a majority of popular titles and authors for under $3’s per book. For every book you do buy, the organization gives a book to a child or adult in a foreign country. Shipping is free!

Trick-or-Treat Sellers

Barnes & Noble- It is probably the best known bookstore. However, it’s prices can be drastically lowered if you are willing to look around and price elsewhere. I would recommend checking their website for bargain-buys but shelf buying should be prohibited.

Books-A-Million- It is a smaller bookstore but a great place to find bargains. Here, you will find popular titles in each genre for under $5’s on clearance. No shelf buying unless you have a membership and even then, it can cheaper through online alternatives.

Half-Price Books- It sells and buys used books. It is a great place to shop the bargain boxes and clearance shelves. I would recommend browsing the shelves for hidden bargains which cost about the same as a book and its shipping online.

I know that finding a good bookstore is often hard simply because of prices. It is tragic that the publishers and owners must sell at a high rate to make their own profit. Over this past year, Border’s went out of business and I was heart-broken;. However, I never bought books except from the bargain table. It is the sad reality of books; it all comes down to price, quality, and format.


Matthew Benton