Best Tips for Second Hand Book Shopping
Everyone should buy used books, including you, your grandmother, and your best friend. In fact, we'd go so far as to say that everyone should buy second hand books as often as possible, saving new paper books for special occasions, gifting, and those rare, wonderful occasions when you receive a gift certificate for your family's unique gifty holiday.
The arguments go beyond frugality! Everyone knows that a $30 new book is exorbitant at best and impossible at worst. Purchasing a second hand item/book entails more than just the sticker price. It expresses our humanity. It's a social and economic act of heroism. It's the way we should all look about books from now on, not only for our own shelves, but for how we see ourselves as readers, our critical thinking talents, and the future viability of our planet.
Buying and collecting used books is a rewarding and inexpensive hobby, plus, let's face it, anything that keeps books out of landfills helps you live a greener lifestyle.
Paperbacks, hardcovers, and special limited editions all find their way into well-loved libraries.
The most important factor to consider when purchasing a book is that you enjoy it, regardless of how old it is, who wrote it, or what it is about.
Decide what you like
After you've finished reading something you enjoy, take note of the author and additional titles. Search by category and seek assistance from the customer service department of the online second hand bookshop. Look at websites and use the links on those pages to find categories. Make a list!
Fantastic Fiction is a wonderful website that we suggest. It's invaluable for finding out what else an author has written, what novels are in a series, what other authors write in a similar style, and when or if the author has any new books coming out.
Examine the Condition of the Used Book
There's nothing wrong with purchasing a well-read second hand book from an online store, especially if it's a title you've been looking for a long time. If you are a serious collector or want to ensure that your used books preserve their worth, always aim for the best copy you can buy.
The state of a used book is undeniably significant; a tatty old book will always have a poor monetary value, and when it comes to collectable books, the condition is crucial. No collector wants a dog-eared, scruffy book with a torn or missing spine and ripped or missing end papers (these are the pages that are made up of a double-size sheet folded in half and pasted to the book's inside cover, with the other half serving as the first free page).
Prepare ahead of time
Keep a list with you at all times, or you'll end yourself on an online second hand bookshop like Usedbooksfactory, where your mind will go blank from the sheer number of books on display.
What to Be Aware Of
Take a look at the following examples:
Boards and Spine
Are the boards and spine attached and in good shape if the second hand book is a hardback? Is there any legible lettering on the spine?
Look through the book, has it been annotated? Nothing is more infuriating than to pick up a nice copy of a book only to get it home and find that some previous owner has profusely annotated the text in red biro! This particularly applies to use textbooks.
If the book is illustrated, look for a list of illustrations in the front (if there isn't one, ask your local bookshop to find out how many there should be) and then double-check that all of the images are present. A missing illustration devalues a book more than anything else.
Just like a missing illustration, a missing or damaged dust jacket can have a significant impact on a book's pricing. Is it possible that the dust jacket has been 'price clipped'? Keep an eye out for fake dust jackets in particular! On the second hand book market, a growing number of books with phony dust jackets are appearing. You only need to glance at eBay to see how many are now available for purchase.
These are just a few of the things to keep an eye out for; if you're unsure, ask your local second-hand bookshop for guidance.
Maintain an open mind.
Continue browsing! You might prefer fiction or history, but that doesn't mean there isn't something else out there for you. Give yourself plenty of time to go through all of the unique and interesting books available in second hand bookshops.
Take your time and focus on odd titles, check out the cover, read the blurb, and don't simply go for what your friends and family have recommended. You'll discover new authors you hadn't heard of before.
Speak with a member of the team at the Online Second hand Shop.
Do not be scared to inquire about book recommendations from a used book merchant!
You should make an effort to enjoy conversing with consumers because recommendations and information are reciprocal, and you never stop learning from others.
Make the most of the afternoon
Allow yourself plenty of time to look around. You'll miss the second-hand book you're seeking for if you rush. But if you take it slowly, you'll see that used book as well as the one next to it!
Be somewhat impulsive in your decisions.
The used book you desire will not be available tomorrow or next week, so buy it when you see it.
We get a lot of questions like, 'You had this in the window yesterday...' It's gone when it's gone!
Where to Purchase Second Hand Books
The second-hand book market has seen a boom in recent years, with a slew of new entrants, not least of whom are charity stores, who have, unsurprisingly, sought to profit from the increasing market. Because of their minimal overhead, charity shops are able to compete with Amazon and eBay for paperback sales. When it comes to selling anything other than paperback novels, the problem they've run across is their volunteer sales force's understandable lack of experience.
Buying online is another apparent option to explore. Buying used books online, like so much else in our lives, can be quick and convenient, and sites like Usedbooksfactory from India, Amazon, and eBay have a large number of used books for sale. However, a word of caution. A lot of the large sellers on these digital platforms use auto pricing algorithms to price track the same book being sold by their competitors. This can lead to some rather odd pricing, as illustrated by the recent listing of a technical book on flies for approximately $23 million!! Although this was an extreme case (we hope no one bought it for that amount!!), books that are listed for significantly more than their genuine value are frequently seen.
Nothing like visiting a good old fashioned bookshop for true book enthusiasts, where you can see and touch that long-awaited title and meet knowledgeable employees and like-minded booklovers. Online shopping may be convenient, but it is never an experience!
But don't forget about the classics.
From Austen to Zola, vintage/antiquarian volumes in good condition are far superior to what can be purchased new. They frequently make use of higher-quality materials and are designed to be read more than once. And, as long as they aren't first editions, they can be a great deal cheaper than buying a new paperback. When the medium is better, we can appreciate our favorite stories even more.
How Much Should You Spend on a Used Book?
What should you pay for that hard-to-find secondhand book? This has always been a conundrum for me. At the end of the day, a book's true value is determined by how much someone is willing to pay for it. Checking what other people are selling it for online can be a good guide, although as previously stated, there are many mispriced second used books available for sale online. If at all possible, see what a similar book in similar condition has sold for in the past. If you like a used book and are willing to pay the asking price, that's OK; nevertheless, don't be afraid to make an offer; the seller can always say "no."
Have fun looking for used books.
The books that teach you how to earn them come with an experience that no national chain can match. They don't have to be uncommon or valuable to be technically difficult to locate and valuable to you. Have a good time. Purchase used books that you must seek out.
This procedure is not only enjoyable and empowering, but it is also critical to your continued enjoyment of your quarry. It's simple to walk into a big box and make an assured purchase. Hundreds of last-season blockbusters are donated to libraries every year, according to a large number of librarians.
Your copy of Good Omens with the pre-Amazon cover, on the other hand, will be special to you for a long time since it was worth your time and work. Even if you're reselling it because you despise every word, you'll have a meaningful relationship with it after it leaves your possession.