As any bibliophile will tell you, you can never have enough books.
Each semester, the Marriott Library opens their doors for their book sale, feeding the habits of bibliophiles across campus without breaking their banks. Open for a week, the book sale hosts a variety of genres, editions, and backgrounds to the general public. There is a presale available for students, faculty, and staff the Friday before the sale, UCards are required, but all are encouraged to come every day.
Given the wealth of resources at the Marriott, the book sale reflects a similar depth of availability. Books are categorized based on their subject matter, which makes it easy to walk directly to whatever you’re most interested in. The fiction section is most likely the largest, but there are still plenty of books on art, biology, math, languages, sociology and history. The title of book sale is also slightly misleading, since the sale also includes multimedia items available for purchase. These DVDs and CDs mostly appear to be in good condition, and include both recent and classic titles. The sale also includes art images, programs, pamphlets and playbills, which may require a little more care to examine, but are still worth it.
However, even though books may be categorized, they may not be entirely organized, especially getting later into the week. Often there are books tucked behind the stacks, or loose books simply placed on other shelves. While it’s a little tedious, it’s worth it to check every nook and cranny. It takes patience and care to go through the narrow rows of shelves, but there are some excellent gems to be had.
Even amidst crowded shelves, patrons are polite and willing to let you scoot by to check out the next shelf. Employees are similarly helpful, and are happy to aid in answering questions and finalizing your order. A list is also available for anyone interested in joining an email list for future sale events. A quiet playlist of soft pop or showtunes accompanies the sale experience, making it feel calm and peaceful.
One of the highlights of the book sale is that prices go down the entire week. Mondays, hardbacks are $2 and paperbacks are $1, and the next day prices decrease by half. On Wednesday you can fill a library bag for $6, and on Thursday you can fill a bag for $4. Any books that still remain by Friday can be picked up for free. If you can’t make it down to the book sale in person during that week, the Marriot also has an online book sale year round on Albris.com.
The book sale is a delightful event to attend for open afternoons at the library, or in the search for one particular title. Be prepared to spend some time around the titles, to ensure your visit is thorough. And, as always, you can catch the next book sale in the spring.