Over the weekend, we went to a book sale the kids’ school was having as fund-raiser. I’d never been to their book sale before, and was a little skeptical, but it turned out to be a good one.
The book sale was set up in the Parish Hall, a large room, much larger than the school library, where I thought he sale would be held. (After some consideration, I realized that holding a book sale in a library might be confusing, and unproductive.) All the books were donated and there were plenty of them. The books were arranged into rough sections: Sports, Fiction, Religion, Biography, History, and children’s books.
As a lifelong bibliophile, I know how to make my way through a bookstore. I’ve made my way through countless used bookstores, softening lingering for hours, but only because I enjoy the stores. I know what I am looking for and I know how to spot it quickly. Within ten minutes, I’d found five books that I wanted.
I assumed we needed to pay in cash, and Kelly said she’d brought some cash along. She picked out a book for herself, and for the baby. The kids picked out about 15 books among them. I wasn’t sure we’d have enough cash for all of the books, and I wasn’t sure we could pay with a card. But it turned out my worrying was needless. Kids books were 3 for a $1. Hardcovers and trade paperbacks were $2 each. We walked out of the book sale with 22 books and paid $14. I felt a little guilty, until I realized that the books were all donated to the school, so the entire $14 we spent was profit for the school.
What books did I pick up?
In the Sports section, I found a hardcover edition of Roger Angell’s Game Time: A Baseball Companion. I’ve read a few of Angell’s books, and this seemed like a nice addition.
I found a trade paperback of Patrick Rothfuss’s The Name of the Wind, which I also tossed on my pile. I’ve read the book twice, but both times were the audiobook version, and I wanted a paper version.
There was a hardcover edition of Stephen King’s Desperation, one of the few King books I have not yet read.
Finally, and best of all, was a two-volume biography of John Adams by Page Smith, complete with the box for the boxed set. These five books cost me $8.
It was interesting to browse the selection of books they had at the book sale. I like to think that my reading interests run to the obscure, but I saw several books for sale that I’ve read that I was surprised that other people had read (or at least purchased) as well. I saw, for instance, Bing Crosby: A Pocketful of Dreams by Gary Giddins. I would have sworn I was the only one in the world to read that book. (The sequel is coming out soon by Little Brown, according to Giddins website.)
This book sale is the kind of win-win event that makes everyone happy. We came home with 22 books, pleased we spent only $14. And the school is probably making a killing, thanks to the thousands of books donated to the cause.