The largest of the season for our area was held this past weekend. Each book sale has it’s own personality, and this particular one largely consists of the culled books from the city’s related libraries. Often times when a new book comes out, they will order multiple copies because of the large amount of people who frequent the libraries. But over time, what was once the newest books aren’t so new anymore and the shelves need edited to make room for the latest popular books. Solution? Hold a HUGE book bash sale!! One of the nice things about this is that there are sometimes multiple copies of the same book at the sale, so you can pick which cover condition is the best. Another thing is that I rarely saw a book predating 2000 (both a pro and con).
This was the Book Bash’s 3rd annual sale. I attended the first year they had it, missed the 2nd, but could see a marked improvement in this third. For one thing, it was much more organized and easily wheelchair accessible. The first year had boxes of books strewn around tables of books, and it became so difficult to stoop up, down, around, not to mention the handicapped had a hard time getting near to tables and through the aisles. I overheard two women talking about last year, and they said all the books were on tables, but only in stacks and no one could read the spines. I’m sort of glad I missed that one after all! This year, all books were in boxes on the tables, but with their spines readable.
Another thing they did differently this year was hold an educator’s day on Friday, where educators of any kind could come in early for first dibbs. Last year they had a good turn-out of teachers, so this year they opened up the early day to include homeschoolers. I have mixed feelings about this early Friday first-dibbs. At first it seems like a great idea. And if you’re going to give educators special treatment, it should include both public and private educators. Yet. I know homeschoolers (I was one.) I’ve been to the homeschool fairs. Homeschoolers are characteristically self-educated, therefore they read a lot. They will come from far and wide for the chance at a great book or curriculum sale. This is not a bad thing. But the rest of us like to read, too! I heard that Friday was PACKED. And I noticed that by the time Sunday afternoon’s bag sale day came around, things looked substantially picked over. There was literally no classics section left, no children’s books, and very little non-fiction. A tad disappointing. I mean, they might as well call the whole thing a Homeschool Convention and call it a weekend before they ever get to Saturday.
I’m sure I wasn’t the only one who felt that way. Now: what’s to stop people from become wiser next year and show up on Day 1, saying “I’m a homeschooler!” (because there’s no way to prove that you’re not), and droves of people wiping the sale out just to get in on first pickings? It’s a little unfair in my opinion. (I’m allowed to criticize my own kind! 🙂
Today was bag sale day, and even though it had been picked over, there were still lots and lots of fun to be had. I went in with a prioritized plan: 1) Classics – because they usually get wiped out pretty quickly. Unfortunately, by the time I got there they had disappeared completely. 2) Inspirational – Fellow Christian fiction lovers will pig out on these by the bag full, so I wanted to get there quickly. This section was not as large as the 1st year I went, probably largely due to the fact that the majority of homeschoolers are Christians. Still a good selection, though and I made good. 3) Non fiction – hoping to find some of the titles I have on goodreads account. No such luck. Very picked over. 4) General fiction – I’m trying to broaden my horizons beyond the inspirational genre. Still 9 tables of this section left to peruse!
I don’t generally go into a sale with a particular book or author in mind to find. If I do that, I won’t find what I’m looking for! Rather, it just helps to know my books and authors, take along my To-Read notebooks as reference if need be, and skim through the boxes for titles and names I recognize.
The cost per bag went up from $5 to $6 this year. At first I was a little disgruntled, but then I saw that the size of the bags got bigger as well! Oh boy! Poor Mom followed behind me as I kept handing her books to put in. Both she and I shared a bag and in the end we got 27 items, which comes out to about .22 cents an item. My mom got a lot of audiobooks, some of which were read by Lynn Redgrave, Katherine Kellgren, and Scott Brick (some of my favorite narrators).
And last but not least, here is my own haul from the day!: