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Topic: free or discounted books?  (Read 7228 times)
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« on: May 28, 2005 02:36:07 AM »

hi everybody,
i was wondering if anybody noes wad happens the books which are taken off the shelves after being put there for a long time and no body buys blabla..
do the book stores throw them away? will they sell it at a discounted price if u ask or even gif them away for free?

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« Reply #1 on: May 29, 2005 06:13:40 PM »

I believe they rip off the covers and mail them back to the publisher for a refund/credit, and discard the guts.
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« Reply #2 on: June 29, 2005 12:14:25 PM »

I don't know if you'd be interested in this, but there's a site where you can trade books for other books.  I don't know the details, but here is the link:

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« Reply #3 on: July 03, 2008 09:22:31 PM »

Generally, they get sent to bargain booksellers (there are a couple here in Orlando that I frequent), and sold for about 80% off cover price. If they still don't sell, it's usually back to the publisher they go. If anyone does know about free books, though, that would be amazing. My mom and I are both teachers, and we put in a lot of money for books, especially my mom, who teaches elementary school (class libraries tend to slowly disappear).
« Reply #4 on: August 02, 2008 01:53:49 AM »

if youre looking for free books. check the dumpsters of your library. one day i found literally over 1,000 books behind the library. i guess they were outdated or something.

and they also have a booksale on weekends (everything less than $4)

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« Reply #5 on: August 31, 2008 11:23:26 PM »

my local library always has books for sale for 25 or 50 cents.  The Sally Shop (Salvation Army) sells paperbacks for 50 cents, hardcovers for a dollar.  Garage sales usually have great books real cheap.

I've also gotten boxes of books for free from Freecycle and Craigslist.  Of course, you have to take the entire box, including a lot of uninteresting stuff, but you can offer it back up where you got it, or donate it to the library, or Salvation Army, or sell it at a garage sale...  The neverending story!

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« Reply #6 on: September 26, 2008 09:34:13 AM »

Bookstores-mass market paperbacks, the covers are ripped off and returned, books dumpstered. We can't even take them to read ourselves, or we risk being fired. Magazines are treated the same way. They've always done this. My 82 year old dad remembers the drugstore in his small town would give the stripped comic books to the kids.
Other books are returned to the publisher. Some of them from there end up on the remainder market. No, the bookstores themselves will not sell the books to you for a discount instead of stripping/returning them, because they get credit from the publisher.
The other suggestions here are great. I buy cheap books at Goodwill all the time, I am lucky enough to have good used bookstores in my area, sometimes one gets lucky at yardsales. If yardsale books are cheap enough, you could buy them to trade in at the used book store later. And I'm always seeing books offered on Craigslist/Freecycle. I'd ask friends and family, too. They may have some in the basement or attic you could take off their hands. Word to the wise about used book stores. Usually any book you bring them for trade has to be a mimimum cover price. Since they sell them for half the cover price, it makes sense they wouldn't want old, cheap ones. If you have a Half Price Books in your area(I love that chain!), that's the one exception. They will take almost anything, just to keep it out of the landfill. They're big on recycling. You won't get much for them, but a little is better than nothing.

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« Reply #7 on: October 21, 2008 06:31:50 PM »

i live in cobb county ga.  every year the libary has a used book sale.  You can bring your own box{ the last box i brought it was a big tv box} and fill it up for 10.00 the had tables and tables of books in two different huge rooms.  I would call you local libraries and ask to see if that have anything similar or like this.
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« Reply #8 on: November 17, 2008 05:15:12 PM »

I used to work for Borders and paperbacks that are under 15 bucks and generally all sci-fi, romance, fantasy, dated seasonals, etc. have the covers ripped off and sent back to their respective manufacturers as prooof of "field destroy". The coverless book is then tossed in the trash and no, it's never recycled. Sad, but true. Michael's, Barnes and Nobles, and many other book sellers do the same thing. The even sadder thing is the employees are forbidden with penalties of termination for taking naked books home. Although, if you don't mind a lil dumpster dive this is good news for you!

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« Reply #9 on: November 17, 2008 05:34:13 PM »

Hippiepunk is right. And they even lock the dumpsters now. People would fill them up with their own trash, for one-and the store pays for them to be emptied. We used to recycle at our store. Different employees would bring home metal, glass, and plastic to put in our own recycling bins. But we were made to stop-our corperate masters were afraid we'd hide merchandise in the garbage.
Yeah, you think they'd let us have the stripped books, since there's no way they could be returned for a refund, or even sold to a used book store-but if we tried, they'd fire us. And not even recycled-it's such a waste....

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« Reply #10 on: March 15, 2009 10:23:46 AM »

www.swaptree.com You can trade books and movies there so maybe that is what they do??

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« Reply #11 on: March 20, 2009 05:49:43 PM »

www.bookcrossing.com is pretty cool.
« Reply #12 on: March 22, 2009 12:02:03 PM »

I also used to work for Borders.  The thing that no one has mentioned is that taking those cover-less books out of the dumpster is illegal.  It is considered theft.  It is stupid and senseless, but it is the truth.  Because the book store is getting credited from the publisher, the book has not been paid for.  That's why book store dumpsters are usually locked behind 8 foot fences.  Just know that diving these dumpsters is decidedly more risky.

I worked in the cafe, when we were slow they would put me on strip-the-magazine duty and I HATED it.  I felt like I was killing the Earth with every rip and tear.


On the upside, when they remodeled the store, they threw out some nice bookshelves and let the employees take them on a first come, first serve basis.  Somehow, I single-handedly fit three of them into the back of my hatchback.  They were the perfect size for storing CDs, DVDs or paperbacks.

If you know a store is remodeling, watch the dumpsters closely.

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« Reply #13 on: March 31, 2009 07:13:48 PM »

Our local Habitat for Humanity Re-Store has a monthly book sale - $2.00 per bag, they are regular plastic grocery bags, but I can easily fit about 10 books in them.  Cheaper than Goodwill or even garage sales, where books are at least 25 cents each!
« Reply #14 on: April 03, 2009 11:26:43 AM »

In L.A., there is a small chain of $1 bookstores - I think they buy books (used and remainders) from auctioneers/wholesalers for pennies per pound.

Reading some of the posts about throwing away the books - ridiculous. No wonder we have such a problem with waste in this country.
« Reply #15 on: December 05, 2010 10:44:38 AM »

I can't believe book stores throw the books away.  I get that the book hasn't been paid for, meaning that the author and publisher lose out if someone takes it instead of buying it, but you'd think that they would at least recycle the paper!  It makes this English major sad. I mean, I want to make some cool projects from books, but I can't even bring myself to tear up a volume for that purpose.  Books are a wonderful thing and should not be tossed so wastefully.
« Reply #16 on: December 17, 2010 01:54:02 PM »

I love books and I hope they would at least recycle the ones that did not sell.

But, I can also understand why they would sequester the ones that were pulled and not make them available to the public - if we all knew that a book would be public domain if it did not sell, we could all just wait out the selling period and get it for free.

Eventually the profitability of book selling would make people question why they were doing it in the first place and we would lose future writers that sought other avenues of revenue.

But I really hope that some good does come from tearing a cover off and I hope that in the end it finds a recycling plant that can repurpose the book and not just be a total waste.

« Reply #17 on: March 03, 2011 11:04:12 PM »

In response to the books having the covers ripped off and thrown in the dumpster: Does anyone know if there has every been a petition started for this practice to be change? If there hasn't been one we should try to start one. I have no clue who we would need to get involved (as far as companies, organizations, etc.), but I think it is worth a shot. I am a book lover and this makes me really sad, especially since there are children in other countries that don't know how to read because they can't go to school and can't even afford to have books in their homes. I get so mad when people throw things away, but the throwing away of books is the like the ultimate unforgivable act in my mind. My mom recently saved a book for me out of a dumpster at the elementary school that she works at, she said that the dumpster was half full with brand new text books but she didn't dig them out because they were covered in food (from the cafeteria, that's where my mom works) and all wet and nasty. This is not the first time my mom has seen this, she has worked at two different schools in the past ten or so years and numerous times she has found boxes full of text books in the dumpsters. She digs them out when she can, but most of the time they are already ruined from garbage that has been thrown on top of them.
And also I just saw a notice at my local library that said that California might close lots of library branches due to lack of funding. This is another thing that is extremely tragic.
Okay I really need to stop now because I am about to burst from anger.

Ugh! To have less free time would be so awesome!
« Reply #18 on: July 22, 2013 11:23:09 PM »

I think they either send back to the publishers, distributors; or they sell those old and wear & tear books in sale with heavy discounts. In my point of view we should not buy such books as they do not look good and other point is that the pages of such books get pale so it put heavy strain on our eyes when we read. Better to buy new books.

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« Reply #19 on: July 23, 2013 01:36:35 AM »

I love finding local used book stores.  Bring in books you don't want anymore, and get credit towards new-used books! 

Random book thought, when did paperbacks get so flippin' expensive?!  What happened to putting them out as Trade Paperbacks (that fit better for carrying to work and what not) rather than the $14.99 big fancy-pants paperbacks.  No matter how much I have wanted a new book, now I wait until I can snag it used.  Sorry authors, $10+ per book is far too much for me to shell out, considering I usually read at least 2 per week.

Also, there are some great free or cheep (LEGAL!) e-book websites out there.  http://www.pixelofink.com/
Both feature deals for free or cheep downloads.  You can also browse Amazon in the free kindle section. 

Looking to de-stash cross stitch magazines, particularly Cross Stitch Gold or New Stitches?  Please drop me a line!  I'd love to swap or buy some missing from my library!
« Reply #20 on: February 26, 2014 06:29:38 PM »

Our Friends of the Library has sales several times a year, and the last hour of the sale is a bag of books for $5. You can fit a lot of books in for $5. So check out your library.

We have a county library in our city and they take all the old damaged books to the county main office for paper recycling, so no dumpsters here.

I got two boxes of crafting magazines from the newspaper in the free give away section, so keep an eagle eye on your paper too.

My husband is in publishing and they are currently switching their business model to reach 80% ebooks and 20% printed. Have you heard about the library that opened in San Antonio - not a book in the place - it's full of computers and ereaders!

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