Participate In A Swap Meet, Without Actually Meeting

Though I don’t make much time to read anymore (shame on me!), I think I might have to change that up a bit. Part of the reason I got out of the habit is our book availability situation. We don’t (and haven’t for the last 14 years we’ve lived here) have access to our town’s library, because we live in an unincorporated area. (well, we can get INTO the library and use the facility, but we cannot borrow books) There is an option for families like ours: pony up some extra cash to “buy” a library card. No dice. It has always been cheaper for us to have the kids use their school libraries and Jim and I just buy books (mostly on sale, of course!) when we want to read them. Buying books off and on throughout the year is still cheaper than a family library card.

If we have an “emergency research situation” whereby we need a large amount of books (thank goodness THAT doesn’t happen often, thanks to the internet!), Julesie will check out some books from us, from her town’s library.

That’s been the situation for years. Until now. Books just got cheaper for us, because of PaperBackSwap.com. My NYCGirl Patty brought this site to my attention and I thought I’d share it with you (By the way, I’m not being compensated in any way to write about it; it’s just another Public Service Announcement from Yours Truly!).

Here’s how it works: you go to that website and sign up for a free account. You list a bunch of your books (they must be in good condition), and when another member orders one from you, you ship it to them. You pay for the shipping. (And you can use Media Mail, which costs an average of $2 per book.)

After you ship it and they receive it, you get a book swap credit. Each credit you get equals one book that YOU can order. That’s how the website ensures that everyone plays fairly: if you’re out of credits, no books for you.

Currently they are offering two book credits when you list your first ten books. Jim and I did that last night and we’ve already got requests for four of them, which I will ship this week.

Now, if you have easy access to a library, this may not be for you. But if you don’t, or if you like to have no time limits on the books you read (once you get a book in the mail, it’s actually considered to be yours forever: unless you list it for a re-swap, which is sort of the idea!), then I think you should give this a shot! (and then let me know if you do!)

5 Comments

  • Michelle

    Wait, her library has a coffee shop with sweet pastries? Yikes! Although it does make me feel better about voting down the $49mm referendum last fall 🙂

    My mom is in the same boat you are… and I check out books for her. Her fee is $700 per year I think? I can't imagine how they justify that!

    And me? I just got back from the library we are SOMEhow actually a part of (on the VERY edge, and we aren't part of the park district) with five new books to read.

  • Heather

    I love our library (it's at the corner of our street!) but I can NEVER remember to return books in time, especially since I can't do a time constraint on books during school times cause I'm reading other boring stuff. (i.e. biochemistry, kill me now!)

    I think I'll give this a shot, but it will probably be later on in the week when I have a second to go through ALL of my books 🙂

  • Mrs4444

    This is a great idea! I have a TON of NEW books that I received recently in two giveaways.I'll be happy to send them your way if I ever get the time to read them! Right now, I'm actually reading Rage Against the M… I love it! I won't send that one to you, since I'm sure you own it. I'm looking forward to sharing around here–no one has heard of it at school…

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