5 Places to Buy Preloved Books For Less


I bought a LOT of preloved books this past year. Mostly out of necessity- I was repurchasing books from my youth that were long since out of print. But also out of a desire to buy less new books, and to save money. If you’re a prolific reader, you know the cost of buying new books can add up quickly.

I love the fact that behind every used book, there’s a story. Was it a gift? Did they choose this book deliberately? Why? How did it end up here? Did they even like it? It’s fun to imagine the backstory for used books, and to help keep them in circulation long past their publication date.

I’ve had great success with several retailers, and I wanted to share them with you!

World Of Books

This company has been by number one go to this year. They sell mostly on eBay and their prices are amazing. I’ve not had any issues with condition- if a book is listed as very good, then it is! Postage is included as well, bonus. Great for books that are long since out of print, particularly those that weren’t bestsellers first time around. You’ll be surprised at what you find!

Charity (Thrift) Shops

I love visiting my local charity shop- It’s about five minutes drive from my house, which as you can imagine means I go quite often! They have a really big selection of both fiction and non fiction, and I’ve been lucky enough to find a complete trilogy set I wanted, that was long since out of print. Cookbooks are another fantastic find at Charity shops- most people find they only like a couple of recipes, so they tend to donate them- as hardbacks especially take up a lot of room.

National Trust Bookshops

These aren’t at every NT location- but you can check on their website as to which locations near you do have one. I am fortunate to have one at my local NT site, and its a real treasure trove. Fair warning- you will likely have to dig around a bit, they aren’t always as organised as say, a charity shop, but you could find a real bargain if you’re willing to root around. All proceeds will go to support that NT Site-bonus!

Check here to see if there is a bookshop near you!

Local Library

My Library has forever got a little table filled with books for which they ask a very small donation. I found a barely used copy of Elizabeth Gilberts Big Magic- which was on my Amazon wishlist, and they only wanted Ā£1 for it as it was hardback. This is a great place to look if you’re after kids books as the turnover for these is high- due to both the sheer amount of new titles, and the fact that kids don’t always take the best care of books and so they have to be removed from the stock.

Local Fetes/Car Boots/Garage Sales

I’ve lumped these together as they are quite similiar in that this is a specific place you would go on say a weekend, when you see it advertised. I’ve found books at local fetes, and I know you’d definitely find them at Car Boot/Garage sales too. Again, you’ll probably have to rummage around a bit, and amongst other used goods as well, but hey- you might find something else you love too!

Other Places

  • Amazon Marketplace
  • Ebay
  • Facebook Marketplace
  • Vinted
  • Antique Book Stores (If you’re looking for something rare, first edition, or very old!)

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Where have you had success in finding used books? Do you prefer to shop used? Let me know in the comments below!

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  1. As an avid reader I love this list of the places to purchase pre-loved books. Growing up, a local church had an enormous book sale each year and I would spend hours going room to room and find tons to purchase. I like these ideas for additional options.

  2. I love picking up used books from various sources. I hit up the thrift store for books whenever I visit the city and it’s always fun to see what the selection is, as it’s vastly different every time. I will need to check out World of Books, I hadn’t heard of that place before.

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