Monday, April 19, 2010

Tales From The Used Book Store

Hello! I'm at Otter Creek Used Books again today, holding down the fort until Barbara returns from vacation. I've had some interesting encounters today--all very useful research for my WIP.

I promised you a funny book cover, and I make good on my promises.

But first, a public service announcement (and I feel like I can be honest here, because I don't speak for Barbara or Otter Creek Used Books. These are my own opinions.)

Yes, used book stores can sometimes benefit from your old books. Sometimes people even make donations of their books and expect nothing in return. It's a nice concept.

However, it's not always nice in practice.

In my short time at the used book store, I've developed a fairly jaded perspective on these so called "donations." Sometimes they're really great, like when a professor retires and decides to donate all the lovely, interesting books he's collected in his office over the years. Wonderful!

But more often than not, these donations are actually extremely noxious, mildewed paperbacks that have been sitting in someone (or someone's aging parent's) basement--a basement that no doubt flooded several times over the years. Come on, does the person bringing in these books REALLY and truly believe that someone is going to buy them?

No, I think not.

What the person is actually thinking is that dropping by these disgusting books to the local used book store is a helluva lot easier than bringing them to the dump or solid waste where they belong. Gee, thanks.

Used book stores are not dumping grounds. And if people enjoy roaming around the store on a rainy afternoon, or letting their book-loving daughter splurge on thirty books about horses because they're only a dollar each, then they should do their part to help keep these places in business, not using them as a shortcut for their spring cleaning.

And now, laughs.

I discovered this book on the stacks the other day and stopped dead:

[Insert joke about how I inspire feverish passion in men here]

Too bad the book is actually about older men who leave their wives for younger women. The younger woman is called "Jennifer" for the entire book and what's even more disconcerting, the author will refer to the younger woman as "a Jennifer."

The wives are called the "Janets." Janets and Jennifers of the world, can't we all just get a long--and agree not to steal each other's husbands? All joking aside, I couldn't help reading some of the book and it was really interesting, if also fairly depressing.

You just never know what you're going to find in a used book store!


  1. I laughed out loud when I saw that book title. And considering how young you look, it has another level of entertainment... Luckily you're not in the business of stealing husbands, as that would just be weird. Thanks for providing a little amusement at the end of a long Monday!

  2. Haha so true. Glad you liked it.

    On a side note, The Business of Stealing Husbands sounds like a cute chick lit series.