Friday, June 28, 2013

Better World Books

Not to brag, but in some areas of life, I have great self-control. Take sleep, for instance. It doesn't matter how behind on work I am or what needs to be done. If it's time to go to bed, it's time to go to bed. I compromise my sleep for no term paper! Or money. I can go MONTHS without spending a dime on anything outside of necessities. Clothes? Accessories? Makeup? Nails? Electronics? Who cares! I might stare longingly at that Doctor Who shirt or cute pair of polka dot flats, but I don't need 'em, so why bother?

For reals, sleep and I are biffles.

Self-control, I tell you.

The one area where I have next to no self-control is books. It's baaad. Someday I hope to do a virtual tour of my bookshelves; then you all can see what a problem I have. I mean, really. I'm not even twenty-three yet and I already know I'm doomed to die with books unread. And that's something I accept. The only time I really get mad at myself is when my desire for financial self-control clashes with my lack of bookish self-control. If I let them, books would drain my bank account in no time flat.

That's why I flipped when I found out about Better World Books. If there's one thing I love better than books, it's CHEAP books. That's why I practically live at our local thrift store and wrote an entire post about the clearance section at my store. And BWB has some pretty cheap books.

For instance, thus far I have placed two different orders with BWB. My first order cost a few bucks over $20 for the following:
  • Uncommon Criminals by Ally Carter (hardcover)
  • The Winter Prince by Elizabeth Wein (hardcover)
  • Sabriel by Garth Nix (paperback)
  • Out of Sight, Out of Time by Ally Carter (hardcover)
Four books, three of them hardcover, for just over $20. The first three were $3.94 apiece, while the last one was about $7. I was still riding high from that purchase when BWB announced a sale. I went a wee bit wild and got:

  • The Quest of the Fair Unknown by Gerald Morris (hardcover)
  • Parsifal's Page by Gerald Morris (hardcover)
  • The Lioness and her Knight by Gerald Morris (hardcover)
  • Theodosia and the Serpents of Chaos by R.L. LaFevers (paperback)
  • The Disreputable History of Frankie Landau-Banks by E. Lockhart (hardcover)
  • Rampant by Diana Peterfreund (hardcover)

Six books, five of them hardcover, for a grand total of... $12. Twelve dollars. You can't beat that. And you know what's even better?

Free shipping.

I kid you not. Free shipping WORLDWIDE.

I know, turtle friend, I couldn't believe it either.
The "catch" for some people might be that the books are not new. They're donated books. Used. Some of them are old library copies with the plastic covers. But each book is described on a scale from poor quality to like-new, so you know what you're getting into. Also, in most cases, those plastic covers come right off, leaving a pristine hardcover beneath. It's AMAZING.

Even better than cheap books and free shipping, though, is where the money goes. Of course, a portion goes to buying books and paying employees. But the rest goes straight to literacy campaigns and libraries around the world. They also purchase physical books and donate them to communities and people in need. According to their FAQ, the two big charities they send books to are Books for Africa and Feed the Children. Oh, and if you're worried about the environment, there's an option to tack on money to your bill to settle against the carbon footprint of your shipment.

I'm in love with this site, guys. Sure, you can't get the freshest releases, but if you're like me, you're constantly gathering recommendations from friends that have been out a few years. This is the site to grab those recommendations. Say it with me: Cheap books! YAY!

Oh, and in case you were wondering, I'm not affiliated with BWB in any way, shape, or form. I just think that any way to buy cheap books and fund literacy in one click is worth sharing with all of you, my bookworm cohorts. Happy shopping!