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Getting Ahold of Books When You're Broke

     
     When a girl begins to run low on bat mitzvah money or retirement savings, what's the first thing she worries about?  Not how she is going to pay the mortgage or finance her online shopping, no; she wonders where her books are going to be coming from.
      And with good reason, too.  Ninety-five percent of bookworms perish miserably within 48 hours of finishing their last book and being unable to afford another.  How can we end these senseless deaths and avoid meeting the same fate ourselves?  By sourcing reading material from the venues listed below, of course.
          1.  Second-Hand Stores: It may take a while to dig past the crappy mysteries and romance novels slightly creepy covers, but once you do, you may find some really great books, some for under a dollar each!
          2.  Library Sales: A library sale is when a library wants to get rid of its old books, so it decides to sell them all for really cheap.  I go to one every year in upstate New York that lets you take as many as can fit in your bag for $5.  Awesome.
          3.  Outside People's Houses:  This is like dumpster-diving for books, except without the dirt and dumpsters, and it works especially well if you live in a house-type-neighborhood with lots of foot traffic.  I have neighbors who leave stacks of old books on their front porch for anyone to take.  I've picked up The Lord of the Rings as well as some books by Jane Austen that I didn't even know existed this way.
          4.  Your Friends: I have lent and borrowed more books than I can count, and - guess what? - it's always free!
          5. The Library: This may seem like an obvious choice to most people, and I guess it is.  My one problem with libraries is that you have to return the books, without mucking them up, and within a specific time frame.  The same goes for option #4, come to think of it.
          6.  Teachers: Your English teacher will be so pleasantly surprised you like reading that she will probably supply you with as many books as you want for the rest of the year.  And they actually give really good book suggestions.  They went to college for a reason, guys! ; )
          7. The E-Reader: I suggest this only as a last resort, because I am convinced e-readers were sent from Hell to obliterate my paper-bound babies from this blessed Earth.  If you are utterly broke, you have my permission to read on your friends' or family members' Kindles, because it is better to do that than to not read at all.
(If you have a Nook but no money to buy books, sell your damn Nook and use that money to buy books!)
                      -Carly

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