If you’re an avid reader, you will know the pull of every bookstore that you have ever come across. It is virtually impossible for me to pass a bookstore without going in. I love browsing the shelves of my local Dymocks, seeing what’s new and picking up books I’ve heard good things about but not yet read. I love the crispness of the covers, the unblemished pages and unmarked spines of new books. With four rugrats I rarely get to experience the pleasure of going to a bookstore on my own, which kind of shatters the leisurely perusal of the shelves that I would like. So in recent years I have started buying more and more books online, from places like Book Depository and Dymocks Online. It’s a somewhat more sterile way to buy, but I still love searching through the various categories and booklists, and I can shop at any time of the day or night, such as when all my kids are asleep!
As nice as new books are, I have always loved secondhand or pre-loved bookstores the most. Books stacked haphazardly from floor to ceiling, piles of books everywhere, the wonderful smell that only used books have, and the delight of finding a real gem among the stacks or grabbing a bargain on a book I’ve wanted for ages. I love that I’m giving these books a new life, another reading, a new home, and a chance to share them with my family. I could spend hours wandering the aisles and perusing the shelves…. except I have children. Children who knock stacks over, pull books from shelves, and run through the narrow aisles disturbing the peace.
So I had a conundrum, wanting to buy used books, but having the inability to get to a used bookstore during daylight hours by myself. Then a couple of years ago I discovered the most amazing online store, a store that allows me to shop at all hours, any day of the week without the “help” of my kids, but still allows me to buy secondhand and used books. As a bonus it has a search function for when I’m looking for something in particular, not as much fun as physically searching stacks and shelves of books, but it does save time!
This wonderful store is called Better World Books. A truly unique online book store, they not only have thousands and thousands of used books in a searchable database, they have free shipping to most parts of the world, and they have plenty of sales and deals throughout the year. A browse in the bargain bin is an absolute must! Each book is listed with a description, including the condition, such as used good or used acceptable. And the best bit? I know, it’s hard to imagine it getting any better, but it does! For every book that they sell they donate a book to a person in need, and each sale supports literacy and libraries around the world. Any books they can’t use are recycled. How totally awesome is that!
Make a difference when you buy books in the year ahead, and give Better World Books a go.