I spent most of Easter Monday indoors reading and sorting out my books; and re-listing some old books for sale on www.greenmetropolis.com – the second-hand paperback book site where there’s a standard selling price of £3 and usually no extra for postage and no commission charged. And also on the second-hand section of www.amazon.co.uk where you can see how many copies of the same edition are being offered for sale and prices can be as low as 1p, but there’s a standard £2.75 for postage, and commission is charged.
I tend to put the low weight paperbacks on Greenmetropolis, so there will be little postage to pay when I sell them; and the hardbacks and heavier paperbacks on Amazon.
It’s a bit dispiriting to see hardback novels by prize-winning authors, like Nadine Gordamer, going for 1p. I’ve also listed a lot of old “Christian” paperback classics like Choose Freedom by Michael Green, or Knowing God by Jim Packer. There’s little chance they will sell – but this is their biblical second chance. After this they go for pulping. You, Me and Jesus by Cliff Richard (in full colour) has probably been snapped up by all the fans who really need it – judging by the fact there’s 50 copies already on Amazon available for 1p each!
On the other hand if you want a hardback copy of the late Cardinal Basil Hume’s spiritual classic Searching for God – which I have just listed – you will need to shell out £39. These are scarce it seems – still nourishing its many first-time owners with its pearls of wisdom. Alternatively you could borrow it from your local library (..do people still do that these days?).
I guess I don’t need Amazon second-hand book prices to indicate for me which brand of spirituality, that of Cliff, or that of Basil has the more enduring appeal; but both have played their part and offered their different books for diffferent types of reader.