Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Hidden Gems

I am a member of a website called Paperback Swap.
As an author, I am all in favor of buying books new, but as a consumer and book lover I know that
A: Some months I just don't have the money to buy all the books I would wish and
B: Some books are out of print and very hard to acquire.

I do buy new books when the budget allows, particularly when an author I know has a new book coming out. (Deborah Cooke, for example has the third in her Dragon trilogy, KISS OF FATE due out on February 3rd, and I have it on pre-order at Amazon. You may also know her as Claire Cook, and Claire Delacroix.)

Paperback swap is a wonderful way to fill in the chinks in my library, go shopping for free, or to find books normally very hard to acquire.

How it works is, you sign up with them, and list some books from your shelves that you no longer need or want.
Paperback Swap spots you your first credit. You can use this credit to order any books from the roughly 2.9 million books currently available.
You can also find books not currently posted and place them on your wish list, and you will receive first chance at them when your turn comes.
When someone orders one of the books you listed, you receive a credit, either after mailing them (if you use tracking from their label printing system) or when the recipient logs the book as 'received'.

One of the first books I acquired was "1030 Stitches" by the magazine Mon Tricot. It is unavailable new, going for around $30 used, and made a terrific addition t0 my knitting reference shelf.

Many times when I am a little bit down, and want some 'retail therapy' I go to the "browse by genre" page and see what people have recently listed.
One of my favorite books found during such a session is "Straw Work and Corn Dollies" by Lettice Sandford. It's a history and instruction book of the various harvest wreaths and 'dollies' made in different parts of Great Britain. With February 1st coming up, its good to have it on hand. (here's an ARTICLE with some good info on Corn Dollies, and another on IMBOLC)

Today I am a bit nervous getting the house ready for my new modified power wheelchair, due here Thursday afternoon. Before turning to drink or drugs (just a joke, Mom) I decided to try shopping at Paperback Swap.

I found and ordered an historical anthology of women explorers that sounds pretty cool:
Unsuitable for Ladies: An Anthology of Women Travellers edited by Jane Robinson; published by Oxford University Press

Although some of the reviews state the excerpts are not very satisfying, I look forward to having it in my library, and may go on to seek out the books written by the women travelers themselves. I also learned she's edited a book called Parrot Pie For breakfast: An Anthology of Women Pioneers that I put on my wishlist at Paperback Swap

Back to browsing, who knows what treasures lurk???

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