Tuesday, September 02, 2008

Bargain books are da bomb

My recent stash from Book Sale and Books for Less:

Druids, Dudes and Beauty Queens: The Changing Face of Irish Theater, Dermot Bolger (editor), P10
Hurlyburly, David Rabe, 15
The Theater Mania Guide to Musical Theater Recordings, P25
The Purple Decades: A Reader, Tom Wolfe, 35
Without Feathers, Woody Allen, P40
Sound of the City: The Rise of Rock and Roll, Charlie Gillett, P40
Light and Shadows: A History of Motion Pictures, Bohn, Stromgen & Johnson, P40
Roger Ebert's Movie Home Companion 1989, P40
Margot Fonteyn, Alastair Macaulay, P60
The Powers That Be, David Halberstam, P70 (hardbound)
Russell Baker's Book of American Humor, P70
Show and Tell, John Lahr, P70
Seeing and Believing: How the Telescope Opened Our Eyes and Minds to the Heavens, Richard Panek, P70
John Gielgud: The Authorized Biography, Sheridan Morley, P99 (hardbound)
The Skeptic: A Life of H.L. Mencken, Terry Teachout, P99
Dazzler: The Life and Times of Moss Hart, Steven Bach, P99
Taking It All In, Pauline Kael, P140
Shakespeare Into Film, Welsh, Vela & Tibbetts, P220

Now the question: Where do I find the time to read them?

The Book Sale branch is in Makati Cinema Square, which has more interesting titles (at least from where I sit) than the sea of blandness at the much bigger Mall of Asia branch. The Books for Less outlet is in Robinsons Place Ermita; it sells books in nearly-mint condition at a uniform price of P99 (I know, awesome!).

I only buy at National Bookstore and Powerbooks during their cut-price season. I've never bought anything at Fully Booked; too expensive, and while it has a wider range of titles, I'd rather wait a few months for the bargain copies. (Example: George Packer's The Assassins' Gate: America in Iraq was selling there for P800-plus, I think. I found a slightly frayed hardbound edition at Book Sale for P160.)

As you can see, I'm into non-fiction works these days. They're harder to find, too, so there's nothing like the high of unearthing a good title at a low, low price.

The mini-library I've amassed over the years remains largely unread, especially the fiction titles--no thanks to the time I've slavishly devoted to newer pursuits like DVDs, blogging and the gym, and to perennial crowders like work, travel, sex and going to church (okay, I made up the last two).

I hardly have time to read, but I'm compelled to buy new books not only because the topics interest me, but also whenever a marked-down price taunts my ever-insecure purchasing power. "P35 na lang di ka pa makabili!" sneers the sticker on the book cover. I cave in, lug the books home, peruse them once or twice while waiting for a slow blog to load, then off they go to join the unread heap.

But before that, they're trotted out in this blog for purposes of gloating. Heh.

What cool bargain books have you found lately? And from where?


Keitaro Hanazawa said...

Batang book sale ka rin pala, ha!:)
Eto pa lang nabibili ko sa Book Sale sa Megamall so far.:)

The World Still Melting
The Woman Who Gave Birth To Rabbits

Two hardbound fiction books for P20 each. Can you believe it?:)

I'm almost done with the first book. Sana matapos ko rin yung isa pa. hehe.:)

May books for less ba sa Galleria?

Eevie said...

Hi Gibbs :) Couldn't resist making a post on your entry ( I secretly subscribe to your blog heehee) because as it so happens, I just came from a bargain book sale from G4 and got a really great hardbound copy of The Making of Aida and The Complete Works of Ibsen :) So happy. :) Just sharing! So yes, just like you, I just love those stores. Especially also since its just about the only place that I am sure to find copies of books in Spanish and French. Heart!

gibbs cadiz said...

KEITARO, as in P20, hardbound? sarap ng feeling no, hehe. wala ako nakikita books for less sa galleria. sana meron, haha. :)

EEVIE, the making of aida the musical or the opera? either way, wow! and the complete works of ibsen! where is this book sale in g4 at nang makapunta din ako at makihalungkat? :)

Eevie said...

Aida the Broadway Musical. :) There are a couple of other Broadway musical books there (mostly on the history of broadway)but since you have to pay cash, I couldn't buy all of them. :( Its conveniently located on the aisle right in front of The Face Shop ( I think its the side facing Landmark). Good luck! :)

Henry O. said...

How about Margaret Mitchell's Gone With the Wind, Ayn Rand's The Fountainhead, Alexandr Solzhenitsyn's One Day in the Life of Ivan Denisovich, Vivian Leigh's biography, etc? All for one peso each. Yes, one peso. At National Bookstore. Not too long ago. And they're not second-hand.

gibbs cadiz said...

EEVIE, i'll try to look for that book stall, thanks for the tip! :)

HENRY, one peso each? wow, you must've gone home with a basketload. :)

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