Used book score: Half Price Books

I usually stick to library book sales, both to support my local library and to score great deal (50 cents to a dollar for most books). But I had four boxes of books, DVDs, and VHS I was sure I’m done with, so I took them to “Half Price Books” to see if I could make enough money to buy something there. I usually never get much for my books, but I guess this time there were a few good ones because I got almost $30, and turned it quickly into:

1) a 1st ed. DMG and MM (the Monster Manual has the newer cover, not Sutherlands’ awful cartoon, and I had to reglue the hinges on it, but both are in usable shape). I passed on a MMII (never liked that one, probably the art), Oriental Adventures, and a PHB. The PHB was the same error ridden printing I had back in the day — half-orcs are given a 14 maximum Dexterity. It was not for many years that I finally saw a corrected table giving them the 17 max. (either in Unearthed Arcana or another printing of PHB), much to the chagrin of many half-orc thief and assassin PCs who never had a dexterity above 14! So I’ll hold out for a later printing.

2) Battlesystem Skirmishes rules — I guess this is a sequel to the Battlesystem mass battle rules, but I’d never heard of it. One nice feature is a mini-bestiary on the upper corner of every page, showing a nicely painted Ral Partha AD&D figure and it’s game stats.

3) Fantasy Wargaming by Bruce Galloway, book club edition. My regular edition is in terrible shape and this one seems bound just as well. Coming soon to Swords & Dorkery: Fantasy Wargaming, cover to cover! 🙂

4) The Goblins of Labyrinth, by Terry Jones & Brian Froud. I have a smaller edition of this book (Titled The Goblin handbook or Field guide to goblins or something similar but consisting of the same content, but with the drawings inked or painted) already that I’ve been meaning to give to my niece. This copy is full-sized.

5) The Silver arm by Jim Fitzpatrick. I’d never heard of him, but I guess he is most famous for the iconic black & white graphic of Che. You can see images from The Silver Arm and the book this is a sequel to at his gallery. I think it’s very colorful and psychedelic. The Silver arm just blew me away when I opened it.

The above came to just under $40, so for $10 and about 60 pounds of books… not the best deal ever but it’s nice to clear some shelf space and get some new books I read and/or use.

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Published in: on July 23, 2010 at 3:34 pm  Comments (7)  
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  1. I never pass up used book stores. There’s a small community over the mountains about 45 minutes away from here, part hippie artist commune and part Southern Baptist ultrareligious community. Last time I was there, I found a book store that also sold vinyl (to the delight of the friend with me) but I managed to find an AD&D Deities and Demigods as well as a boxed pirate-themed RPG from the early 80s.

    Most times, it’s a whiff, but then there are those moments when you don’t mind buying less in other places in order to afford something neat.

  2. I prefer to shop at locally owned stores. I worked for HPB for 5 years, and was treated like dirt the last year I was there. I quit, but still go back every now and then (I feel dirty every time I set foot in that place) when I can’t find what I’m looking for at a local store.

    Watch them when you bring your stuff in. I’ve had certain managers who try to lowball the customer, but then put out items at collectors prices. It doesn’t happen at every store, but I have seen it.

    • Yeah, I think they pretty much pay “pawn shop” rates: 1-10% of resale value. That was four office paper boxes of books — some crap from library book sales and some really nice stuff. I could have probably gotten a lot more via eBay but I see my real options as donate to the library (and claim it as a donation on my taxes) or turn in a HPB. eBay is far too time-consuming for me. HPB is at least kind of fun to hunt around in.

      I used to also sell to a university bookstore that buys many things but they also refuse about half of my stuff & I have to carry it away. There was a nice independent used book store I sold some things to but the guy actually paid too much, I thought, and as I feared he went under.

  3. This is awesome Mike! Where is this Half Priced Books located? Now that I finally have my personal library organized and tracked with my new software Im on the lookout to add to it! 🙂

    • It is in Mayfield, about 1/2 an hour to get to from the Falls. Google “Half price books Mayfield.” It is worth it if you are unloading stuff and just enjoy searching a HUGE bookstore. They had lotsand lots of 3/3.5 ed D&D, some White Wolf stuff, and a little 4e and older eds. The game stuff is always all together near the back. They also had a pile of Dragon magazines for $.50 each, but nothing I wanted.

  4. Looking forward to the Galloway bit. I always get a kick out of revisits to that book.

  5. Awesome score, chief.

    Looking forward to the FW posts…


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