Do’s and Don’ts of Bookshopping

Book-shopping is like Church to a book lover. It’s an essential ritual that when performed correctly, can prove a profound experience. When done wrong, it can be an anxiety inducing nightmare. Fear not! The folks at Bookstr have accumulated some skills in the department. 

DO: Go to a used book store

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If you don’t have a specific title in mind, and are in the mood to peruse and lollygag, then a used bookstore is the way to go. You can walk outta there with 6 books in hand for a fair price if you’re smart. Used bookstores are also a great place to discover obscure titles and authors that aren’t in the bestseller pile. 

DON’T: Go to a big bookstore with no game plan

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Perusing a Barnes and Noble is a lot harder than perusing a used bookstore. For one, you can’t rack up more than three books without spending over 30 dollars, so its best to have a title in mind. Big book stores are best for very intentional trips. That being said, it’s also much easier to disappear into a corner of a big bookstore and just shack up and read for a good 40 mins. Sometimes I’ll set up camp in a discrete area with three or four books in hand, and read a good 10 pages of each. It’s relaxing, and very economical. I walk out knowing I made a good choice. 

DO: Take your time

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As I said earlier, book-shopping is a quasi-religious experience for any book lover, so half the fun is just basking in the glory of a room filled with thousands of books. So don’t rush the trip. Take your time. Breath in the irresistible scent of human wisdom. Pick out a random book, look at its cover, say ‘that’s pretty cool’, and move along. Run your finger along the countless spines, imagine all the adventures that await you. Then choose a book, lest you look like a werido. 

DON’T: Go with a friend

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I know it sounds tremendously anti-social, but I think book shopping is just as intensely personal as reading. For starters, you don’t wanna feel rushed, and the chances of the two of you being on the same schedule are slim. You’re also not likely to spend more than 5 minutes in the same section, so you might as well be alone. And I don’t know about you guys, but I always feel bad walking out with 3 books after an hour in a bookstore, and realizing that my friend had no such luck. 

DO: Fall in love

It’s an advanced move, but if you can do it, don’t be afraid to find your soul mate at a book store.

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DON’T: Do it too often

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The book lover’s trap is biting off more than you can chew. So combine the serotonin of making a purchase with the prospect of an unforgettable reading experience, and it’s not hard to see why one might get totally addicted to the buying, and lose sight of the reading. So try and read half of your books before revisiting your local shop.  


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