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Half-Price Books





georgeodowd
Half-Price Books is a chain of pretty nifty bookstores with amazing deals and (at least where I always go) a really great selection of bestsellers and really obscure stuff. Do you have a Half-Price where you live? If so, have you ever gone? What's the best thing you ever found there? What's your favourite part of the store?
georgeodowd
To break the ice, I shall answer my own questions:
I have to drive 80 miles to the nearest Half-Price Books, but I usually make several trips a year to the one in downtown Berkeley. My favourite part of the store is probably the young adult section. I collect the Harry Potter series in all its published incarnations, and I always seem to find imports or translations at HPB. The most exciting thing I ever found, though, was where they have been hiding the Wodehouse from me all these years. I thought it odd that in all my visits, I had never found a single thing by the man, until just the other day when I found not one, but four volumes of his hiding in the minuscule Mystery Anthology section.
blk3
In my country we have a store called BookSale, real cheap 2nd hand books. And almost all malls has one. So its real convenient.
crimson_aria
^ Yah, BookSale is very convenient. I take a look inside whenever I see one. They're 2nd hand but you can find really good ones. and the books are really cheap. I go there to look for books I want to try, then I decide if I want a new copy of it when I finish. My favorite parts of the store are the mystery/suspense section, the hardbound section, and the pile of books which haven't been arranged yet (I like to see if there are good books which others haven't seen).
georgeodowd
I suspect the US needs more second-hand bookstores. Not necessarily chain stores, since I'm all for independent booksellers, but... it just seems like there are slim pickings in smaller towns. I have ethical issues with buying new books, unless it's something I absolutely can't get used.
carlospro7
There are three Half-Price Books stores near where I live (that I know of). It's an amazing store. One of my favorite places to go to when I just feel like looking for something to read. All at half-price or less. I go to the other book stores (Barnes & Noble, Borders) after I've checked out Half-Price Books. Smile
Nameless
A few of the shopping centres near where I live have similiar second hand book stores. I support them in theory, but I pretty much always just borrow books from the library or (lately) read online books/webcomics/etc. instead. My local newsagents has something I've dubbed the Reject Rack that's always full of cheap books too, and it is my goal to one day have a novel of my own shoved amongst them. Laughing
georgeodowd
carlospro7 wrote:
There are three Half-Price Books stores near where I live (that I know of). It's an amazing store. One of my favorite places to go to when I just feel like looking for something to read. All at half-price or less. I go to the other book stores (Barnes & Noble, Borders) after I've checked out Half-Price Books. Smile


Three! Good Lord, ship one my way! The closest one since I moved is about 80 miles away. It's rather depressing.
georgeodowd
Nameless wrote:
A few of the shopping centres near where I live have similiar second hand book stores. I support them in theory, but I pretty much always just borrow books from the library or (lately) read online books/webcomics/etc. instead. My local newsagents has something I've dubbed the Reject Rack that's always full of cheap books too, and it is my goal to one day have a novel of my own shoved amongst them. Laughing


That's quite an ambition. Where I used to live, there was a friends of the library bookstore with a 'free book trolley' out front. I actually found some pretty neat things there. They also had a couple thousand books inside, all for a dollar or less.
ddukki
The best thing I ever found at Half-Price was actually not a book. It was a pack of three Book Lamps. I was looking for stand lamps that my Praise band could use to read music in the dark, and I found three strong LED lamps for around $10 USD.

The books there are cheap, but sometimes it's hard to find what you want / you really can't know what they have. My half-price is about three-quarters of the size of the Barnes & Nobles and has about half the selection variety.

But at the price they sell books [around $1 for a paperback if you're lucky ... which usually, you will be], it's almost not a problem.
georgeodowd
ddukki wrote:


The books there are cheap, but sometimes it's hard to find what you want / you really can't know what they have. My half-price is about three-quarters of the size of the Barnes & Nobles and has about half the selection variety.


Yeah, I usually go there with a big long wishlist and treat it as a treasure hunt (since most of what I'm looking for is somewhat obscure...). If I needed a specific book and it wasn't very common, I'd probably try to get it online.
dawndibear
Half Price Books is a great alternative to buying a brand-new book at one of the huge chain stores. But don't take your old books there hoping to cash in and walk out with a pocket full of money. They really offer you chump change for them.
ddukki
dawndibear wrote:
Half Price Books is a great alternative to buying a brand-new book at one of the huge chain stores. But don't take your old books there hoping to cash in and walk out with a pocket full of money. They really offer you chump change for them.
I second this. Today, I "sold" - if you can call it that - them my 4 textbooks [which were bought for over $50 on average] for $5.00. That's about $1.25 per book. A little part of me died today ...
georgeodowd
ddukki wrote:
dawndibear wrote:
Half Price Books is a great alternative to buying a brand-new book at one of the huge chain stores. But don't take your old books there hoping to cash in and walk out with a pocket full of money. They really offer you chump change for them.
I second this. Today, I "sold" - if you can call it that - them my 4 textbooks [which were bought for over $50 on average] for $5.00. That's about $1.25 per book. A little part of me died today ...


Yeah, I had the same experience the one time I sold to them. I brought in about 50 books, and ended up with $9 in store credit. It bought me a book and a half from their shelves...
kutekitten
I don't actually live in the states, I'm a canadian Smile but I love second-hand shops, I'll pop into one every once and a while if I have a bit of money to spend, and I usually leave with an armful of books I'd never heard of before and an empty wallet... I've found a lot of great books that way... Another way I get books, if I really want new books, is cosco, my mom has a card for there (I'm not about to spend money so I can shop there, but as long as someone I know has a card, I'm all for it) and I'll still leave with an armful of books, usually the ones that become really popular... For example, I got the entire Twilight series, hardcover, and brand new right when it was getting really popular for $40, and that was crazy low when they were getting popular over here, you couldn't get them all for under $80...
Radar
Down here in Australia, I don't think so. I could be wrong, but I do suppose that it would have to be a bit more than just a large chain to cross continents.
georgeodowd
Radar wrote:
Down here in Australia, I don't think so. I could be wrong, but I do suppose that it would have to be a bit more than just a large chain to cross continents.


Yeah, looking at their website, they seem to only have US locations. However, they're no replacement for the independent, quirky, hole-in-the-wall shops that all cities seem to have. That's where the real treasures are found. Smile
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