Monday, March 30, 2015


Most of the time, I hate disorder in a big way. My desk at work, backed up to my colleague's is a hilarious study in Neat Freak vs. OMG Where'd I Put That. I'm the Neat Freak. I have folders, binders, bins, labels...yeah, I'm that person.

So stepping into Almost Perfect Used Books in Roseville can either be hugely rewarding, or hugely frustrating, depending on my mood and/or how much time I have. I love a good book store, and this one has something like a gazillion books. 

Don't believe me?

This is the kid's/young adult section, two years ago. Now
it's even MORE crowded with books on the floor.

The books are pleasingly organized into sections--contemporary romance sits apart from historical romance...but they're in completely different parts of the store. The only problem is, that's where the organization stops. They've run out of shelf space.

So again, it all depends on my mood. Most of my visits are simple in-and-out visits to drop off a bag of books to add to my trade account. When I have the time and patience, however, I like to dig out my mining gear and do some digging.

Of course they carry this poorly-written nonsense...which
was a staple of my preteen years.

Not just "plays" or "poetry," but a whole section devoted
to the Bard himself.

I find this whole "let's fanfic the hell out of Mr. Darcy"
thing slightly overdone.

They have so many books they sell random ones in paper bags.

With trade credit, I usually walk out of there with a nice stack of books, and I spend under $2 because I'm only obligated to pay tax. Today I left with six books, one of which was "cash no trade," so I spent $16 for one hardback and five paperbacks (one of which I could buy for my Kindle for $6, but essentially got for next to nothing today).

Unless I'm dropping off books and leaving immediately, I never expect my trip through Almost Perfect to be quick. For starters, there are simply so many books to peruse. And secondly, when I do get tired of digging, the line for the one register is usually a few people deep...though "register" isn't the right word for it. See, nothing in Almost Perfect is computerized. 

You read that right.

They use a calculator and a tablet of receipts. 

Credit is kept track on about 10 Rolodexes that are crammed full (and yes, perfectly alphabetized). They take cash and check, but no cards of any kind. 

This is the "pending" stack of books to be processed into

And somehow, no one minds. Maybe we put up with the slow line and the slightly-harried husband who runs the cash box because there's something rather comforting about being in a place where you have an actual conversation during the transaction, rather than staring at a card-reading machine. Maybe it's the ambiance of being surrounded by the smell of books, or knowing that the woman who runs the whole operation knows exactly where to find any book you might want. 

You just wait in line with your ridiculously large stack of books, and happily wait for your turn, knowing you're going home with far more books than you'd dare buy in one trip to Barnes and Noble. 

As for what I bought today:

The Birth of Venus by Sarah Dunant

The Places In Between by Rory Stewart

Tell Me Something True by Leila Cobo

Let's Pretend This Never Happened by Jenny Lawson (The Bloggess)

The House at Tyneford by Natasha Solomons 

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