We love books. We sell books. But we're not book sellers. We're move managers first, adding value for our transition clients by selling some of their no longer needed things. Books might be the largest category of things our clients edit as they move forward. We donate at least half to three quarters of books from our clients, most often to More than Words, an awesome local non-profit. But we do sell some books. How do we decide what to sell?
Condition is the A number one priority. Books we sell must be free of mold or mildew, as well as free of odors such as cigarette smoke or mustiness. Those books are not donated, they are disposed of. Yes, it's hard to do. But all those things are condition deal breakers. A contaminated book will contaminate other books. A stinky book does not soon give up that stink.
Second, it must have resale value. New books, with the possible exception of really expensive texts like art books, have good resale value for non-profits, but not enough to warrant all the time on our part that goes into listing a book for sale.
Some books we gather for further research. Books we pay particular attention to are small presses, niche topics, vintage cookbooks, some textbooks, poetry, art books and craft books. Also, books with interesting titles, illustrations, quirky themes or particular beauty. If we find they have enough resale value to offset the cost of our time, they stay. If they don't, to donation they go. (Sometimes they go the the b&m shop because they are so cool we can't let go of them.)
Our clients are interesting people, and many of them have interesting libraries that match their passions and personalities. That makes for quite a wide and eclectic selection of books we offer for sale.
Our book-selling antennas are always twitching for:
- books about New England, especially from small presses
- vintage travel books, capturing times and places past
- history books, again from small presses or with incredible illustrations or rare topics
- community cookbooks (because no one ever submits a yucky recipe) and classic vintage cookbooks (because lots of people like to replace favorites) and lesser known but well written cookbooks and cookbooks with lots of signs of use and staining (because you know it was a kitchen bible)
- craft books, because the internet will never replace studying a good book, and because older craft books have crafts that have fallen from public interest but are still awesome
- art books that have either great histories to devour or beautiful illustrations to dream about
- poetry, just because
- textbooks with older copyrights that are considered seminal texts to this day
- children's picture books that aren't common but probably have special memories for adults out there
- paperbacks with midcentury graphics on their covers
- books that are quirky, on unusual niche topics or that are so cool we have no choice but to list them online.
There are lots of people who keep all their books digitally. But they still like the library style look. For those of you we offer book stacks. For a stack, we're looking for great color and titles you might actually want to read or that have a theme that adds something to your decor that says something like you. Vintage science is one of our favorite stack genres.
All of the books we have for sale are listed on our website. If you're a regular at the shop, not all of them are on the floor. Ask if there's something you want to see. And stay tuned, new titles are added frequently.