buying books

When my family returned to Hemet from our three-year sojourn to Barstow I was in the fourth grade. It was the very beginning of the fourth quarter. I quickly discovered a marvelous program that we didn’t have in Barstow. Every so often we got a catalog from Scholastic Books. The books listed were all paperback and very inexpensive. We brought our order sheet and our money to the teacher who consolidated everything and sent the order in. When the books arrived the teacher distributed the books and we got to take them home.

paperbackstacksBetter yet, there was a summer program where we could send in our order at the end of the school year and the books would arrive at our house for summer reading. Later, I discovered that the science fiction and fantasy paperbacks I read had order forms in the back, and I could send off for books that perhaps my local bookstore, The Hungry Eye, perhaps did not stock.

Today, of course, we have Amazon, and for those with Amazon Prime, the book arrives in two days without a shipping charge. Or for those of us who are Kindle aficionados our books arrive instantly.

It is a very different world from 1963, but the pleasure of a new book showing up, in whatever format, is undiminished.

photo credit: jvoves, Creative Commons license

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