Wednesdays at OFB with Steph

Another installment of "Wednesdays at OFB" courtesy of bookseller Steph. If you have not paid a visit to our sister store, you should!

The Smell of Books

When I open the back door in the morning and step into the shop, I always pause to inhale. I see customers do the same thing – walk through the door, pause and take a deep breath, then visibly relax. Ah, the smell of books. Used books, which smell different – more calming – than brand new ones.  

One hundred percent of the books at Once & Future Books are used, all from our greater Treasure Valley community.  People bring them in for store credit, which can be redeemed at this store as well as at Rediscovered Books in both Boise and Caldwell.

We are often asked what kind of books we buy, and the answer is “Whatever we know we can sell.”  We do require that the books we buy be in good condition. No tears, broken spines, water damage, mold, highlighting or underlining.  Our top sellers are contemporary fiction, classics, mystery/suspense, and fantasy/science fiction, so those are usually a safe bet to bring in. So are manga and graphic novels. We generally don’t take hardbacks unless they are so new that the paperback has not been released.  The exceptions are classics, Stephen King, and anything by Anthony Doerr. Right now, we buy back and sell a volume of All the Light We Cannot See or Cloud Cuckoo Land almost every day.  Today I put a nice edition of Steinbeck’s East of Eden on the shelf and not five minutes later, someone picked it up and carried it around the store for half an hour gathering other books and then bought it. No doubt, it was because of the smell.