Thursday, September 14, 2017

The "Book Buying" Tag

As I'm sure you could tell, from all the book hauls I've shared, I'm no stranger to the buying of books.  That's what I'm such a great candidate to do the Book Buying Tag, which was originally a Booktube video tag, created by Megan Olivier.  You can watch her video here.  Without further ado, let's explore my book buying...

Where do you buy your books?

I'm a bit of an omnivore when it comes to book buying.  I have a Kindle (and the Kindle app on my phone), so I buy/download many of those books directly from Amazon.  I will also, on occasion, buy books from Amazon, but I prefer to go elsewhere whenever possible.  I have a Barnes & Noble membership, and will purchase from them, especially when they send out coupons that can be used on top of whatever other discounts they have going.  I also am big into bookstore tourism, so if I'm visiting a new city I will seek out indie bookstores and (almost always) buy books from them.   However, my absolute favorite place to buy books is at my local indie, The Midtown Scholar, which you can take a little tour of here.

I also regularly buy remaindered and secondhand/used books.  The Midtown Scholar has a great assortment of used books in just about any topic you can think of.  I get remaindered books for super-cheapsies via BookOutlet, and they often have sales where you can get even more discounts.  I also keep track of when my local libraries have their book sales.  I have no qualms about buying books that way, not only because the prices are usually less than $5 per book, but also because that money goes directly to the library.  And I absolutely love my libraries!

Do you ever pre-order books?  If so, how do you do it?

It's really rare that I feel compelled to pre-order books.  Even if there's an author whose work I've loved in the past, I can't be guaranteed that I'll love her/his new releases.  Honestly, I don't find value in pre-ordering unless there's something extra in the bargain.  Barnes & Noble has a robust selection of signed books, so I will pre-order some books there.  Most recently, I pre-ordered a signed copy of David Sedaris' published diaries Theft By Finding, which was signed by the author.

In addition to signed copies, sometimes bookstore will offer extra goodies if you pre-order a book by a certain date.  This was the case with the bookstore Politics and Prose in Washington, DC.  When Zadie Smith's novel Swing Time was announced, P&P had a promotional offer that, if you pre-ordered the book by a certain date, you would also receive a matching tote bag.  Because Zadie Smith was doing an event in town right around the time of the release, the bookstore was graciously willing to have my copy of Swing Time signed and mailed to me, along with the tote bag.  This made me a very happy reader indeed!

On average, how many books do you buy per month?

This entirely depends on what I'm up to in a given month.  If there's a library book sale going on, BookOutlet is having a sale, or if I'm traveling to a place where I might visit new bookstores, then there's a good chance that I'll buy quite a few books.  Otherwise, I might buy one or even no books.

Do you use your local library?

Yes!  I use it very frequently, almost weekly.  I'm such a regular user that I have my library patron number memorized.  Because of where I live and work, I'm able to be a member of three different library systems, which opens up the possibilities of what books are available to me.  If there's a new release, or even an older book, chances are good that at least one of the three libraries will have a copy for me to request.

How many books can/do you borrow from the library at a time?

I've never checked out enough books to encounter a borrowing limit, but I think the maximum is somewhere around 15-20.

What is your opinion on library books?

I. Love. Library. Books.  I love libraries, which is why I visit mine so frequently.  The only time I don't like library books are when the book I'm looking for has been damaged or lost.  That happened to me recently - the book was listed as being on the "hold" shelf, ready for me to pick it up, but when I got there it had *poof* disappeared.  Thankfully this is a very rare happening.

How do you feel about charity shop/secondhand books?

I feel real good about them!  I'd say that my shelves are a 50/50 mixture of new books and secondhand books.  I am quite picky about the condition of books I acquire from charity shops and used bookstores, however.  I prefer them to be as close to "new" condition as possible.  That means: No or very little writing inside, intact covers and pages, no water/etc. damage.  So, many of the secondhand books on my shelves look pretty much new.

Do you keep your "read" and "TBR" piles together, separate, or otherwise?

My bookshelf space is limited, so I have all of my books on two bookcases.  That means that my read and unread books live harmoniously, side by side.

Do you plan to read all the books that you own?

I certainly plan to, but I own a lot of books.  I don't buy a book unless I plan to read it at some point.  I hope to be able to read them all in my lifetime, but who knows.

What do you do with books that you own, but don't expect to read or didn't enjoy?

As I mentioned before, my shelf space is limited.  Therefore, if I DNF a book that I own, or don't enjoy it after I've finished it, it goes in a discard pile.  We have a small lending library where I work, so I contribute my unwanted books there.  I have also, on occasion, donated and sold books that I didn't love or no longer wanted to keep. [photo]

Have you ever donated books?

My work's little lending library is the recipient of many of my donated books.  I will also donate to libraries, for them to use in their book sales.  I just have to be careful that I don't buy back my own book!

Have you ever been on a book-buying ban?


Do you feel that you buy too many books?

I don't buy too many books, because they're an investment in my mental, emotional, empathetic, and cultural life.  Books are well worth it.

And that's it for the "Book Buying" tag.  How do you acquire your books?  How are they stored in your space?  If you're interested in answering these questions, consider yourself tagged.

Librorum annis,