Author Topic: No library near me. How do I get cheap books?  (Read 5069 times)

forummm

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No library near me. How do I get cheap books?
« on: May 02, 2014, 02:18:08 PM »
There are no good libraries anywhere near my house. Any good mustachian ideas to get cheap books? I'm happy to wait a few years until they are being cast off by others. Sometimes I can find big bundles of mega authors (like James Patterson) for about $1 a book when you buy 40 books. But what about authors that have only 1 book you want. Even if it's on Amazon for a penny, you still have to pay $4 for shipping.

missundecided

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Re: No library near me. How do I get cheap books?
« Reply #1 on: May 02, 2014, 02:20:50 PM »
Check out paperbackswap.com if you're in the US. Or bookmooch if you're not.

Worsted Skeins

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Re: No library near me. How do I get cheap books?
« Reply #2 on: May 02, 2014, 02:23:39 PM »
Are there charity shops near you?  Granted, choices are limited but I often buy my airplane books (mysteries) from them.

rebel100

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Re: No library near me. How do I get cheap books?
« Reply #3 on: May 02, 2014, 02:27:20 PM »
Probably not much help, but I always check Amazon followed by Abe-Books, followed by Ebay.  It surprises me how much the price can differ among the three.  Locally stores like goodwill often have big book collections for rock bottom prices.

seattlecyclone

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Re: No library near me. How do I get cheap books?
« Reply #4 on: May 02, 2014, 02:27:31 PM »
I have had decent luck with paperbackswap.com. The way it works is that you can list a bunch of old books that you don't want anymore. If someone else on the site wants one of them, you mail it to them, and you will receive a credit that you can redeem for someone else's unwanted book in the future. It's not free (because you have to pay to mail books to others), but it's cheaper than Amazon's $4 minimum shipping cost.

ZiziPB

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Re: No library near me. How do I get cheap books?
« Reply #5 on: May 02, 2014, 02:30:37 PM »
Are there any libraries you can get to?  Most I know will do interlibrary loans easily - where I live you can get any book from any other library in the state.

Noodle

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Re: No library near me. How do I get cheap books?
« Reply #6 on: May 02, 2014, 02:43:27 PM »
Interlibrary loans are often limited as to the number allowed (a librarian friend told me they are quite expensive for the library, so I tend to save them for things I can't find for a penny + $4 shipping on Amazon) but many libraries are part of a county or regional system so you can get books from a lot of different branches. Most of the branches I have lived near in the last couple of moves have been quite small so I almost always do requests.

Do you have a tablet or e-reader? I ask because, along with the library's e-books, (and sometimes you can borrow from other libraries' ebook collections, depending on state or regional agreements), Amazon and Barnes and Noble have a lot of cheap e-books. Amazon usually has 4-5 on sale for .99-2.99 as a Daily Deal, plus a monthly sale on another 100 or so titles, plus sometimes they will do an extra sale (they usually have a huge Black Friday sale). B&N gives away a free Nook book every Friday. SOme of them are dumb, but some are quite good! Those tend to be cheaper than anything I can find used, other than yard sales or the clearance rack at the local used book store. At this point, e-readers have been around long enough that you could probably pick up an older model pretty cheaply or a lot of people probably have them in the back of a closet if you ask around.

Lans Holman

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Re: No library near me. How do I get cheap books?
« Reply #7 on: May 02, 2014, 03:21:35 PM »
Daedalusbooks.com has some good deals, I used to order stuff from them a lot when I didn't have access to a library.

Catbert

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Re: No library near me. How do I get cheap books?
« Reply #8 on: May 02, 2014, 03:56:08 PM »
Garage sales (obviously pretty hit and miss).  Or see if there is a paperback exchange bookstore close by.  The one near me sells/trades used paperbacks for 50% of the list price and credits you 25% for paperbacks you bring in.  So bring in 6 paperbacks and bring 3 home for free.  Not sure how common these shops are.

teen persuasion

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Re: No library near me. How do I get cheap books?
« Reply #9 on: May 02, 2014, 04:28:28 PM »
Interlibrary loans are often limited as to the number allowed (a librarian friend told me they are quite expensive for the library, so I tend to save them for things I can't find for a penny + $4 shipping on Amazon) but many libraries are part of a county or regional system so you can get books from a lot of different branches. Most of the branches I have lived near in the last couple of moves have been quite small so I almost always do requests.

Do you have a tablet or e-reader? I ask because, along with the library's e-books, (and sometimes you can borrow from other libraries' ebook collections, depending on state or regional agreements), Amazon and Barnes and Noble have a lot of cheap e-books. Amazon usually has 4-5 on sale for .99-2.99 as a Daily Deal, plus a monthly sale on another 100 or so titles, plus sometimes they will do an extra sale (they usually have a huge Black Friday sale). B&N gives away a free Nook book every Friday. SOme of them are dumb, but some are quite good! Those tend to be cheaper than anything I can find used, other than yard sales or the clearance rack at the local used book store. At this point, e-readers have been around long enough that you could probably pick up an older model pretty cheaply or a lot of people probably have them in the back of a closet if you ask around.

ILL is encouraged at my library (I work there);  We have a regular delivery guy who make the rounds of our 3 county system, larger libraries daily, and smaller ones like mine 3x a week.  The delivery also returns books to their owning library, since patrons can return books to any library, so it is no extra expense, and we always want to be the ones to checkout a book to you, rather than sending you to some other library.  Circs are everything!

There are lots of sources for free ebooks and audio books, especially for classics that are out of copyright.  Project Gutenberg is good for those classics.  I always scan Amazon's 100 free list; some are short term listings, so I check every day or so.  If you have Amazon prime, you can borrow select books for free; you can also lend/borrow ebooks with other people.  If you don't have an ereader, you can download kindle for pc to your computer for free.

galliver

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Re: No library near me. How do I get cheap books?
« Reply #10 on: May 02, 2014, 06:49:44 PM »
www.oysterbooks.com was laughed at here a while back but might work for your situation...up to you to decide whether the selection and price works out better than other options.

Gimesalot

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Re: No library near me. How do I get cheap books?
« Reply #11 on: May 02, 2014, 06:57:12 PM »
If you are willing to read e-books, here are a few options:

Check if the closes library has e-books.  Several libraries have collections that you can check out and download for free.

If you want to read classics, project gutenberg is amazing.  There are thousands of free e-books.

If you want to buy, I use www.dealoz.com.  You put in the title and it searches about 50 book sites to find you the best price.  Also, they let you know if there are coupon codes.  In addition, a lot of the sellers are affiliated with bigcrumbs so you can get cash back.

bogart

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Re: No library near me. How do I get cheap books?
« Reply #12 on: May 02, 2014, 07:23:35 PM »
My town library subscribes to an e-books system, you can check out up to 4 at a time, put holds on others you want (if they're not available when you want them) and check them out from anywhere in the world.  It's not the best selection in the world (neither is their bricks and mortar collection), but I do pretty well through it, for light reading.

I know if you get a Prime membership, that makes a lot of books' Kindle editions free.  But I don't have any idea how good the selection is.

dodojojo

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Re: No library near me. How do I get cheap books?
« Reply #13 on: May 02, 2014, 08:48:24 PM »
I'm a member of three great library systems, so I'm not lacking choices. Even so...like it's been mentioned, check out the e-collections.  Nearly all the books I borrow are e-audio (preference) and e-books.

Librovox is the e-audio version of the Gutenberg Project.

If your library system doesn't have an e-collection option, see if you can sign up at another system.  Many libraries have reciprocal relationships.  So it's not just an intra-loan system, you can actually sign up for a library card at multiple library systems.  I'm in the DC area and have cards with DC, Montgomery and Arlington counties.  There are also libraries that allow for membership for a fee.