In case you didn’t know….why book addicts love Austin

Half Price BooksHi, I’m Lindsay, and I’m a book addict. You laugh? I’m serious!  Just ask the people who had to move all the book boxes on our recent relocation. And that was after I gave away a lot of books (okay three boxes, but that’s a lot to part with!)

Being a book addict is not easy or cheap. Libraries charge fines (oh, the stories I could tell!) New books are expensive. And even when I have the money, book stores are harder and harder to find, especially in Austin. (All I’ve found are Book People and a few Barnes and Noble stores.)

So within days (hours, maybe?) of moving here I was in my bliss at Half Price Books. But I haven’t written about this discount book nirvana here on the blog because I thought everyone knew about it. I was wrong! In the past two weeks, I have met three people who have been here at least a couple of months but did not know about Half Price Books.

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First of all, they are all over the place in the Austin area. (And in other cities, too, so you can get your fix while traveling,) And they are for the most part exactly what the name implies. A place to buy books for half price or less. And it’s not thrift store stuff. They’re real bookstores, with real sections and real book lovers working inside.

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Want best sellers? Odds are they have them (worth a mention…sometimes they get in new copies of best sellers and offer them at a discount, but not half price.) Need a classic? This is where to head. Computer books, study guides, mysteries, romance? Yup. Want books for your kids? Not only do they have aisles of those, they have a clearance section where your kids can feast on books for a buck or two.

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If you’re a book lover (or are sharing a house with one) and you haven’t been into a Half Price Books, run, do not walk!  Most locations are open until 10 pm, so there’s probably time tonight!

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South Congress Books on Find it in Austin Friday

South Congress BooksAnyone who knows me, knows that I LOVE books. And bookstores.

And while the big box chain stores are fine for picking up a magazine or the newest best seller, I have a special place in my heart for small, independent bookstores. Sadly, they seem to being a dying breed. So when I find one I love, I need to share it.

Today, that’s South Congress Books. This tiny treasure is tucked in among the quirky shops and restaurants on South Congress, near places like Big Top Candy and Guero’s Taco Bar. But it’s not a spot for the party crowd.

This is the place to go for that rare book you just have to have for yourself or a gift. Or an out-of-print or vintage treasure you just cannot find in a chain bookstore.

 It’s also a place to wander through, and find yourself inspired by a beautiful image on a book cover, or magnificent illustrations or a haunting opening sentence —  and discovering that THIS is a book you cannot live without.

If you’re searching for a certain title, you can check out their online inventory to see if they have it in stock. But I prefer to just stop in, and ask. That way, I get to browse the shelves — and maybe find that the book-I-did-not-know-I-needed (but now do!) is sitting right in front of me.