Friday, October 22, 2010

All About Books - Filipino Friday

This weeks question is simple: Where do you buy your books?

So todays post will be dedicated to the book stores where I buy my books. :) In the Philippines, there are basically 3 big names when it comes to bookstores. Fully Booked, Powerbooks and National bookstore. That is if your pertaining to brand new books. Every store offer a vast array of books and I am thankful for that since I tend to "hoard" when it comes to books. As long as I like the cover (my dirty little secret) I'll buy it. I admit, I do judge a book by it's cover. Don't we all?

Anyway, of all the three bookstores I favor Powerbooks more than the two other stores judge because most of their stores offer a wider range and it is much easier to find your books. And when it comes to sales, they give you big discounts and I love em!

I also discovered that I love buying second hand books. Not the torn pages, poorly beaten books, but good conditioned books. I invest a lot of time sitting and scouting the store just to find a better print of a particular book if they happen to offer more than one copy. And where do most Filipinos buy their second hand books? You can find it in every mall. Every corner. Yup! You guess it right, Booksale. Don't you just love all the cheap books??? I even remember this one time when I bought around 20 books from Bookstore and until now, I haven't finished reading them all. I was just sucked dry. Lol. That totally broke my bank.

But I discovered recently online shopping. What I love about online shopping is the option and the convenience of doing it. To think about it, it's more expensive buying your books outside the country but there are certain exemptions to that. Like for example Harry Potter books. I know a lot of people collect the series with different covers. Why? Because it's priceless. I mean, it's passion. I also do this sometimes. Buy a certain book with different cover. So there are three online stores where I buy these books. Amazon, Book Depository and Barnes and Noble. Just last week I spent around $100 buying books. That ain't cheap when converted to Peso just to be spent on books but what can I say I love spending money on books. I don't shop clothes, shoes or bags. I shop books.

I favor Barnes & Noble over Amazon because it's cheaper. Or that's how I think. I haven't tried Book Depository yet but I am seriously thinking since they offer free shipping worldwide. It usually takes months for these books to be delivered here but the wait it worth it especially when you buy books that aren't available in the Philippine market. When you do international online shopping though, don't just dedicate it to books since it's impractical for us(Filipinos) to do that. Combine your books buying with clothes shopping or gadget shopping since I know some of us do that.

But my best advice for Filipino shoppers that don't have a lot of dough to shed, buy books in eBay, Quiapo and booksale. eBay sellers offer a lot of books but weigh your options since a lot of these books you can buy cheaper when you go to booksale. If your really adventurous and don't mind the walking, go to Quiapo. I swear there are a  lot of books that you can find there. Filipinos know this trade since some of us buy used textbooks there. You can make great bargains if you really concentrate on your bargaining skills.

What I wish though is that Philippines would have different bookstores like in the US and UK that offer bookworms like me options. I envy people who can go to different bookstores. Sometimes it's irritating to have limited or no options.

Share your stories, so I'll know additional tricks! :)


  1. I just did my first Book Depository Purchase-I ordered on Oct 9 and the book was here Oct 24-well within the delivery estimate-delivered to your door not the post office like Amazon-a good bit faster than Amazon-I compared costs-the book was USA $13.00 on Book Depository with free shipping-on Amazon it was $11.00 but shipping was $9.00 to $15.00 depending on speed of delivery

  2. I live in South Africa and we have a few more options with the amount of book stores but the variety is not there. I used to buy books from Aphrohost (also free shipping) but since buying my KINDLE, I buy eBooks online and from a variety of places.

    BTW, thank you so much for your help with recovering some of my blog posts that was deleted. I wasn't able to find all but at least a few :)

  3. I love Recto, but I haven't been there in a while. I heard that the bookstalls got raided and there are now fewer books for sale. Hope the area's book business has recovered since then.

  4. I love BookSale. I used to go the branch near my place, almost everyday, just to look around for books I might found.

  5. I used to be a fan of Powerbooks until I got converted to Fully Booked. The selection is a lot better in Fully Booked, most of the books that I get there are not available in Powerbooks. I don't know why but books in Powerbooks are also more expensive.

    If you don't mind getting used books and you like online shopping, you should check out Better World Books. They sell ex-library copies of books and international shipping is $3.97 per book, not that bad.

  6. Here are some specific comparisons of cost of books from versus The Book Depository-

    I ordered two books recently (among others) from The Book Depository-Lynton Strachey by Michael Holyrood and Elizabeth Bowen by Victoria Glendinging-The total costs was $34.38-I ordered on Oct 9 and they came on October 28-they are delivered to your door in Manila, not the post office like Amazon. The same books on Amazon is $53.81.


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