There are organized containers of books, spines out for easy browsing, that sit in rows on well-spaced tables. There are signs that mark the genres (fiction, travel, nature, self-help, romance, etc) for targeted shopping. I notice there is a lovely older woman who shadows me anxiously; she is trying to take my heavy load of books to a table for “lay-away” so that I can shop easier. I smile politely and refuse her help; I don’t want to belabor the point that my bags weigh as much as she does. She seemed disappointed. As I looked back I considered that perhaps I had been mistaken; her biceps were very defined! Yes, tidiness and a cadre of very fit efficient elders ready to provide assistance are the hallmarks of the Friends of the New Milford Library Book Sale in New Milford, Connecticut.
The sale is held in the New Milford High School on Route 7, and the hours for 2013 are:
Thursday, July 11th –
Early Bird, $5.00 – 9am-10am
Doors open @ 9am – 7pm close
Friday, July 12th: 10am – 7pm
Saturday, July 13th:10am – 5pm
Sunday, July 14th – HALF PRICE DAY!: 10am – 3pm
In 20 minutes, I had two bags (totaling $31) filled with books used at different grade levels. Note the three copies of Mark Haddon’s The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Nighttime (photo) which retails at Amazon for $12.41. Three new copies of this book would retail for $37.23. I got these three lightly used copies and all of the other books pictured in the photo for $6.31 LESS than the cost of the three new copies. The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Nighttime is in our Grade 10 World Literature course, and our students enjoy the narration by the autistic boy who uses Sherlock Holmes’s deductive reasoning to solve a mystery.
Other big finds that are in the photo included copies of Tim O’Brien’s The Things They Carried, a copy of Stephen King’s On Writing, and Nancy Fisher’s The House of the Scorpion. There are many other “finds” in the bag next to the neat stack of books.
When I shop at these local sales, I think about how each town’s book sale is a small sociological study. If one could speculate about the interests of the people of New Milford, one would conclude:
- There are some serious, diehard James Patterson fans;
- There is a dedicated interest in nature, animals, and travel (althought this is the first year I did not find a single copy of Bill Bryson’s A Walk in the Woods);
- The entire back half of the area illustrates that children have access to books at all levels.
Finally, I feel it is worthy to note, but rather awkward to say, that there were at least 10 cartons of the Books for Dummies series. I am not saying anything about New Milfordites here…. I’m just sayin’.
Check out was a breeze; receipts for teachers were pre-prepared, and I made a beeline for the door so that lovely elderly woman wouldn’t try to help me carry my bags back to my car. Her energy was making me look bad!