Learning about anything can be an expensive exercise. Textbooks, materials, lessons, time, patience, and the time and patience of those around you. Naturally it is desirable to save some expenditure. My greatest expense has usually been books, as I love to read. Some people will say that the e-book is taking over – true, but very slowly. The kindle, ipad, ereaders, joojoos, etc are coming. But frankly there is nothing like the smell, feel and ease of use that only a real book can offer.
Which brings me to the point of this post (“finally” you think…) I have found a source of cheap, interesting used (and new) books!
BetterWorldBooks.com – “The online bookstore with a soul”
Their operation revolves aruond gathering library discards, retired books and so on, rounds them all up, indexes them into a warehouse and sells them very cheaply. For those living in the US, postage is free, and those further out – postage is only US$3.97 per book.
From their site’s about page:
Better World Books collects and sells books online to fund literacy initiatives worldwide. With more than six million new and used titles in stock, we’re a self-sustaining, triple-bottom-line company that creates social, economic and environmental value for all our stakeholders.
We were founded in 2002 by three friends from the University of Notre Dame who started selling textbooks online to earn some money, and ended up forming a pioneering social enterprise — a business with a mission to promote literacy.
We’re not a traditional company with an add-on “cause” component. Social and environmental responsibility is at thecore of our business. You could say it’s in our DNA.
We’re breaking new ground in online bookselling. We believe that education and access to books are basic human rights. That’s why books sold on BetterWorldBooks.com help fund high-impact literacy projects in the United States and around the world.
All books are available with free shipping to any location within the United States (or $3.97 worldwide). And in case you’re concerned about your eco-footprint, every order is shipped carbon neutral with offsets from Carbonfund.org.
Here’s the best part: In addition to selling new titles, Better World Books supports book drives and collects used books and textbooks through a network of over 1,800 college campuses and partnerships with over 2,000 libraries nationwide. So far, the company has converted more than 25 million donated books into $7.3 million in funding for literacy and education. In the process, we’ve also diverted more than 13,000 tons of books from landfills.
Because we believe that most every book has lasting value and the potential to help change the world, we see our job as helping to find new homes for unwanted books. Thus far, we’ve donated 1.5 million books to partner programs around the world. Our five primary literacy partners are Books for Africa, Room to Read, Worldfund, the National Center for Family Literacy, and Invisible Children. Good company, no doubt.
Every book purchased from Better World Books contributes to individual literacy throughout the world and the promise of a better life. Clearly, we can’t do this work without our customers. That’s why we’re so passionate about trying to offer the best price, selection, customer service, and overall shopping experience.
Although that does sound all ‘warm and fuzzy’ – they deliver on their promise. My last order was for “Digital Electronics – A Practical Approach” by Kleitz, 5th edition. US$10 delivered to Australia. I even found a copy of Don Lancaster’s “CMOS Cookbook” [a classic] for US$4, or “Calculus” by Anton for the same price. The selection below in total was less than US$70 – a bargain:
So before you hit Amazon or eBay, give this operation a try, I think you will be pleasantly surprised!
[Note – this article was initiated by myself personally without the aid or knowledge of the company in mention]
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