Friday, October 29, 2010

Book Trading

I love to read.  I mean, I LOVE to read.   Most years I'll read something like 100 books.  Of course, this can be expensive, because if I purchased them all new, at only $10 each, that would be $1,000.

I've been a member of Paperbackswap.com for almost five years now.  I love it.  You list books you no longer want and are willing to mail to others.  When one is requested, you mail it (at your expense.  This is the only cost of the site until you want to purchase postage on the site or buy delivery confirmation.)  When the person who requested the book receives it, they mark it received and you get one "credit" to be able to spend on another book that's on the site.

An example of savings that can be had is my Wednesday night group at church is doing what is called a "Kingdom Challenge".  If we REALLY can't afford books, they will buy them for us, but I asked if I could be responsible for getting my own since I knew I had one book already and I have an Amazon certificate I won last year. (I won a $200 certificate, and figured since I had about $50 left, I'd rather use that than shell out $41 for books.)  First thing I did before Amazon , though, was check at Paperbackswap.  They had two of the books I needed.  Then I decided to put the third on my wish list. 

The wishlist is a great feature.  Basically you "stand in line" for a book you want.  I have been 1 of 1 for dozens of books for a long time.  Usually these are hard to find books, such as some of the books on balloon scuplture I have wishlisted.  I mean, it's not uncommon for a book about religion or a fiction book to be posted, but not as many people would even want books on animal balloons, and those who do would usually keep them for reference.  That said, I *have* received harder to find books (including balloon scupture ones) from Paperbackswap.

Additionally, contrary to its name Paperbackswap is not just for paperbacks.  I've gotten spiral bound cookbooks, hardcovers, and even booklets.

Sure, occasionally a book gets lost in the mail or someone mails a book that doesn't meet guidelines (no writing, no water damage, etc.)  but you can mark it damaged. 

I've had great success and totally love this site!

As for the books I needed for church?  The one I put on a wishlist has already come up and has been mailed, so I was able to get all three from Paperbackswap  (actually all four since the one I already had came from there some time back.)  My total cost?  Mailing out four books.  (Or at $2.38 media mail rate, a cost of $9.52.)  That's sure better than the $41 to buy the books new (even at a discout) through my church.  And really, I'm not sure I could have afforded the extra $40 right now, so Paperbackswap saved the day!  (Although I was planning on getting the books with the gift certificate I won, but since I had credits and the books were available, I was able to not have to use the gift certificate at all!)

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