4 Reasons to Buy Used Books

I’ve touched previously on the struggles low-income families and students face when trying to access reading materials, and have emphasized buying used books as a viable alternative to paying high cover prices. I realize, however, that my reasoning  has heretofore failed to include those who could buy used but don’t have to. Here, then, for your reading pleasure is a list of four simple facts to compel anyone, regardless of socioeconomic status, to buy used books. Continue reading

A Quick and Easy Guide to Buying Textbooks as an Undergrad

With my last semester at USC Upstate beginning next week, now seemed like a good time to publish this bit of advice for undergrads. In the almost eight years I’ve spent working on my BA, I’ve learned a thing or two about how to avoid buyer’s remorse. With the economy still in recovery, and textbook inflation since 1978 nearing 900%,* it is now more important than ever that students save money when and where they can. The following post contains my three-step book-buying process, plus a handy collection of related tips. Continue reading

7 Great Websites for Buying Used Books

I’ve said before that a reading habit, for individuals and families with far-stretched budgets, can be both expensive and difficult to maintain. In that post, I did not address the all-too-common predicament of low-income college students, who must, when their financial aid runs out, choose between exorbitant out-of-pocket spending and the risk of academic failure. For those individuals who want to read for pleasure, but cannot because of economic situations, the limitations of income are mere inconveniences.  To the already indebted college student pursuing a degree, however, a lack of book funds constitutes dire straits. Neither of these problems is new, but both are persistent. Continue reading

Birthday Books: Start a New Family Tradition Today

A verbal Wunderkind, I began reading at age three. I don’t chalk that up to my own sheer brilliance, because no part of my literary progress would ever have occurred, were it not for my mother. Thanks to her, books and reading have always comprised a huge part of my life. As a child, I went to sleep every night only after she had read something, anything to me. I became friends with Laura Ingalls Wilder and learned all the Uncle Remus tales by heart. I devoured books. Sometimes I got in over my head, like the time I tried to read The Shining at age 10.* Overall, though, my experiences with books have been positive. Continue reading