What do you do with those extra books?

Posted: August 13, 2019 9:00:00 AM CDT

Have you ever started doing a spring or summer or fall or winter or some other time cleaning and come across books you haven’t seen or used in years? Have you ever wondered what to do with books you no longer want or need?  

Believe it or not, there are several wonderful options available for these books if they are in good condition, i.e. all the pages are there and readable, no mold or mildew, and the binding is in good shape.

closeup of moldy book cover and pages

One option involves gifting them to your friends or family. You might want to check with them first before you give them your books, but they might really enjoy having these gems.

You could hold a sale and mark them for a minimal cost such as a penny, nickel, dime or quarter. You could also have a few books that might be marked as free. Advertising such a sale on social media sites and spreading the word among your family and friends might generate more interest than what you realize. As they say, one man’s trash is another man’s treasure.

Donating these items to Good Will or the Salvation Army is another wonderful option. You can check for a location close to you. Just think of the joy you will bring someone who comes in to one of those shops and finds the title you donated. Not only are you making the shopper’s day but you are also contributing to the mission of these organizations. Everyone comes out a winner.

There is also another organization that accepts book donations. That organization is Better World Books.  You can find details about how and where to donate. This organization is another wonderful opportunity to donate books to a good cause and make a difference. 

open book with dark liguid stain on pages

What if your books are not in very good condition? Some examples might include: the binding is torn or coming loose; pages are either missing, coming out or torn; there are spots on the pages or highlighting or the print is difficult to read, mold, mildew, etc. You get the picture. There may be only one option and it’s one that is very difficult for most people. That may involve throwing away these books. Something that might help make this a little easier is knowing that if you keep these books on the shelf next to other books and these damaged books have mold or mildew that mold or mildew will end up growing on your other books. Throwing away damaged books will save the other books in your collection.

Open book marked up with lots of pink highlighter

There are so many different ways to share the joy of your books. I hope this will spark your creativity and generosity as you carefully consider what to do with these special items.

By: Michele Hall

Category: Books & More, Library Hacks