On Frugality

This week’s RTW over at YA Highway asks:  Where do you buy most of your books?

While I’d love to say that I stick with indie booksellers and never step foot into box stores and the like, I have to admit that I buy most of my books at Barnes & Noble.  We have a membership there, and my husband is always clamoring to peruse their tech book section, so I end up browsing (and inevitably buying) from their vast selection.

That being said, I do try to purchase from indie shops and used book stores when possible.  Over the past year, I bought a bunch of books from Powell’s in Portland, our library sale, The Secret Garden in Seattle (which I used to live right around the corner from, but now I get their newsletter and it depresses me because I’m all the way across the country :(), and of course the Borders closing sale because goddamn those books got cheap.

And to be honest, I check out a lot of books from the library.  Because that’s free, and there is nothing cheaper than free.

I feel like, with the amount of books I end up buying and the fact that I grew up in a very frugal household, it’s tough for me to give up on finding good deals.  OK, it’s nearly impossible.

Where do you buy your books?

Share My Wisdom:


  1. Colin says:

    I’m with you on finding deals, Crystal. Having a family and being on a tight budget kinda forces you into it. I, too, wish I could do more to give back to the local stores and the publishing industry. But at the moment, if I don’t buy where it’s cheapest (B&N, Amazon, Amazon Marketplace, other used), I won’t buy at all… and that’s just not going to happen. 🙂

    • Crystal says:

      Cheap box store books are far better than no books! The way I see it is that if I were ever published, of course I’d prefer that readers bought from places that supported authors and publishers–but I’d much rather just see people reading and enjoying the book, no matter where they got it.

  2. Jaime says:

    I buy books where I can get a good deal mostly (like you). I’m not even sure that we have indie bookstores where I live. I suppose I should check sometime. I do like the selection that larger store have, though, also.

    • Crystal says:

      I hear you. Selection really is important, and it sucks that indie stores can’t carry as many books as the giant retailers. Sometimes the books I want just aren’t on the shelves at smaller stores.

  3. commutinggirl says:

    Hubby also always goes to the tech section in bookstores. However, since he knows how I love to simply stand there and read one blurb after the other before deciding, he usually lets me go by myself. The downside: I usually by more alone than with him 🙂

    • Crystal says:

      That’s funny, because I usually buy far more when I’m shopping with my husband! He’s somewhat of a spendthrift and helps me assuage my buyers-guilt 😉

    • Crystal says:

      Good–I think, unfortunately, there aren’t enough of us. For a while, I could only afford to get books at the library so I got kind of used to it 🙂 It’s nice to own the books, but we move a lot and book boxes are HEAVY!

  4. Tracey Neithercott says:

    I’m all about finding a bargain, too, which is why I mostly shop on Amazon and BN.com. My local library doesn’t allow people over 18 to check out teen or children’s books (seriously) so that’s not really a money-saving option for me. (Until I can find an 18 year old who will make a fake student ID for me in exchange for one of my old 21+ IDs.)

    Anyhow, I do think I buy more online than I would at a store, mainly because I save more.

    • Crystal says:

      Your local library sounds strict, lol. That sucks. I think it might be the only responsible thing to do to trade IDs with someone for free books.

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