Books are one of those products that can go around and around and around and assuming some bumhead doesn’t tear a page out somewhere, its relative worth does not change. A rollicking-good-read is still a rollicking-good-read no matter how pristine or tatty the pages are.
It’s for this reason that I head to my local second-hand bookshop whenever I’m looking for a new book.
By choosing to buy second-hand, I’m happy in the knowledge that I’m not unnecessarily adding to the demand for more stuff.
These days however I generally have Master Mayhem and Miss Logical in tow so I don’t always have the time (or patience) to stroll along the aisles of my favourite bookshops.
So, while I will always advocate shopping at your local bookstore first, it’s comforting to know that there are many great online options for buying second-hand books.
Here are my top 3 online second-hand bookstores in order of preference.
Range: They have a huge range of books and had several copies of the particular book I searched for.
Shipping: Free shipping (allow 10-21 days).
Sales: ‘Bargain Bin’ section where you can purchase 7 books for $35.
Returns: Returns accepted if shipped back within 60 days of the purchase date.
Bonus: Each time you purchase a book from Better World Books, a book is donated to someone in need. The books donated go through Better World Books non-profit partners, Books for Africa and Feed the Children. For more information on the good people of Better World Books, head here.
Added Bonus: While Better World Books is based in America, to offset international buyers concerns about their carbon footprint, every order shipped is carbon balanced with Green-e Climate certified offsets.
Range: While they didn’t have the particular book I was looking for, I would definitely use this site again for it’s easy to use ‘browse’ categories.
Shipping: Orders of 1 or 2 books are charged $6.00 per order (allow 5-7 days).
Sales: Recently offered free freight for orders of three or more books so it pays to check if there are any current promotions running.
Returns: No returns option available.
Bonus: Brotherhood Books reinvest 100% of their profits to the Brotherhood of St Laurence’s work in helping disadvantaged people build better lives.
Donate: Books can be donated in the white bins provided at any Brotherhood of St Laurence community stores located around Victoria.
Note: This site is different in that the website acts as a middleman between buyer and seller. When you place your order, Bookon informs the seller that their book has been purchased and the seller must send it within three days.
Range: They did have the book I was looking for.
Shipping: Ranges from $6.60 to $17.70 depending on speed and weight of parcel. All books are shipped within three days of order.
Returns: Does offer returns but you must contact the seller direct and a fourteen day time frame is encouraged.
Bonus: You can sell your own books through this website.
Other online book sellers worth mentioning were:
* Reading Habit
* Special mention to Reading Habit because they offer a gift voucher option
What gems have you uncovered while trawling through secondhand book stores?