Making Purchasing Books Cost-Effective

Discussion in 'Community Discussion' started by MICHAELSD, Jan 17, 2016.

  1. MICHAELSD macrumors 68040


    Jul 13, 2008
    Sure, there are libraries but to be candid I'd be more likely to read more often if I didn't have to read mucked-up, dirtied pages. I would love for there to be an Apple Music for books, rather than a Netflix, but unfortunately there isn't. (If you didn't get the analogy: Apple Music has basically all music. Netflix has a limited selection of films.) Heck, it'd be fantastic if Barnes & Noble offered a physical subscription. I want to start reading voraciously, although cost is a limiting factor in that. Not that I can't afford it, but I'd prefer not to increase my spending by $1,000/year if I were to try to read 100 books a year, or even ~ $500/year if I were to read one book a week.

    Although I barely play video games these days, I make it work by buying on-sale then selling at basically the same price. It'd certainly help if I could do the same with books by getting books deeply discounted then selling afterwards.

    I do enjoy reading books on my iPhone (also great for quick research on topics) but I think there's more accountability and less room for distraction with a physical book.

    I know there are a lot of people out there reading dozens of brand new/digital books per year. How do you make it work?
  2. maflynn Moderator


    Staff Member

    May 3, 2009
    I'd assume, the same way people made it work prior to digital books.

    The kindle (I'm not sure about iBooks) offer access to Libraries and thus you are not bound to purchasing books. There's also a number of resources on the net about getting books on epub format for free or low cost.
  3. Scepticalscribe, Jan 17, 2016
    Last edited: Jan 17, 2016

    Scepticalscribe Contributor


    Jul 29, 2008
    The Far Horizon
    If public lending libraries are properly resourced, instead of being starved of funds as public spending is reduced, then there might not be quite so many books with "mucked-up dirtied" pages and libraries could afford to buy new copies of books that people might be interested in reading.

    When I was a university teacher, (in one of those ancient universities that had a right to a copy of every book published in the UK) I used the university library shamelessly - it was a fantastic resource for both fact (the stuff I taught and that which I wished to research further) and indeed, fiction.

    Having said that, it is not only libraries that are starved of resources, but the decline in the numbers of bricks-and-mortar high street booksellers has also seen the gradual withdrawal of another form of public resource: Which of us has not strolled into a large, well stocked bookstore, and spent - literally - hours browsing there? Some of my most interesting reads - ever - have come about as a result of such impulse buys.

    Without bookstores, there is a lot less likelihood of buying a book spontaneously on impulse: Indeed, when I shop online, it is usually for something that I am actually looking out for, perhaps as a result of a recommendation from a reviewer, or a colleague, or because I know the work of the author from other books and rate him or her highly and so on.

    Again, these days, fewer people have well stocked book shelves - my house has three rooms of floor to ceiling bookshelves, but that is not the norm. As a teenager and adult, I used to lend and borrow books; but fewer people are reading - and to be honest, much of that they do read holds little interest for me.

    So, OP, if you want to read books you have the old choice of: Beg, borrow or buy.
  4. heehee macrumors 68020


    Jul 31, 2006
    Same country as Santa Claus
    One drive app can let you read library books from the app. You just need to have your library card and password. See if your library offer this.
  5. smallcoffee macrumors 65816

    Oct 15, 2014
    North America
    You might be able to find lots of books on eBay. Another option is your local Goodwill or thrift store.

    I'm lucky that I live in a state where we take libraries seriously, and have some of the best in the country, but alas I am also fortunate that I have enough disposable income that I can purchase books frequently. $.01 + $3.99 shipping.... <3 Amazon.
  6. LizKat macrumors 68040


    Aug 5, 2004
    Catskill Mountains
    I live in the boondocks of upstate New York and there's a four-county library system that also has a bookmobile service (that comes once a month to a set location in each village or unincorporated hamlet that does not have a library). I have never noticed that the books on offer are in bad physical shape, and they include a fair number of recently published works as well as anything you've requested in advance.

    Not sure how you get this kind of library funding but start w/ state assemblyman if your local library says they don't get enough state money.
  7. JamesMike macrumors demi-god


    Nov 3, 2014
  8. LizKat macrumors 68040


    Aug 5, 2004
    Catskill Mountains
    Right, it's great (but I think it's called Overdrive).
  9. shinji macrumors 65816


    Mar 18, 2007

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