Discussion Forums - Questions about PaperBackSwap Questions about PaperBackSwap

Topic: Did you start treating your books differently?

Club rule - Please, if you cannot be courteous and respectful, do not post in this forum.
  Unlock Forum posting with Annual Membership.
Subject: Did you start treating your books differently?
Date Posted: 5/6/2012 10:45 AM ET
Member Since: 1/27/2009
Posts: 46
Back To Top

I, for one, love to read in the tub. But now, just when I'm about to sink into the water with a book in my hand, I think, "If I get a single drop of water on this book I can't swap it." And so I set the book aside and read after my bath. I've become simarly conscientious about not reading while eating, and not letting my books get all banged up from being in my purse. I buy quite a few books used through Amazon, and I get so sad when there is highlighting or underlining in a book!


Since I've started swapping here, I've started treating my books better. I was never bad to them, but I'm much more aware of what I'm doing when I'm reading and what kind of condition my books are in. Has this happened to anyone else?

Date Posted: 5/6/2012 11:15 AM ET
Member Since: 8/30/2008
Posts: 2,207
Back To Top

I've always been very careful with books so my reading habit haven't changed, although one day at work I sneezed while I was reading at lunch and did think to myself 'uh, oh, can't post this one' but it was more of a reaction to the situation since the book was an old used RC that I was rereading and there was no way the book could have been posted.

I'm probably overly obsessive about keeping bought-new books in like-new condition. Not a good thing to be that obsessive.


Date Posted: 5/6/2012 11:30 AM ET
Member Since: 5/30/2008
Posts: 146
Back To Top

I usually have something to drink next to me and I hate it when I spill and get it on the book. Then if it is only a litle on a corner I wonder if I should post it or not. You would think I would learn.

Date Posted: 5/6/2012 12:13 PM ET
Member Since: 12/31/2009
Posts: 3,995
Back To Top

Yes, but it seems now that I'm trying to be extra careful, I'm actually getting more clumsy. If there is a way to splash a drink on a book I'll manage it, even if the book is across the room. I am also an expert small puddle finder. If there is a tiny, near-invisible, wet spot on a surface where a drink recently sat, I will put a book down on top of it 100% of the time. I don't know why I bother trying. crying

Date Posted: 5/6/2012 12:19 PM ET
Member Since: 2/26/2009
Posts: 38,082
Back To Top

Yes.  I now use a bookcover on the paperback I carry in my purse to keep it in good condition.

Date Posted: 5/6/2012 12:53 PM ET
Member Since: 3/13/2009
Posts: 8,022
Back To Top

No.  I've always kept my books in pretty good condition.  I read while eating or read in the tub, but I've been doing it for years, so I know how to do it without dirtying the book.

Last Edited on: 5/6/12 4:49 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 5/6/2012 2:44 PM ET
Member Since: 1/22/2011
Posts: 2,413
Back To Top

I also have become hyper aware of treating books with extra care! That is so funny; I thought it was just me.  Do you find yourself riffling through the pages of any book you come across, turning it over, mentally checking condition?

Date Posted: 5/6/2012 3:05 PM ET
Member Since: 8/26/2006
Posts: 9,365
Back To Top

I think twice about which book I'm going to take to the beach.  It has to already be unpostable.

Date Posted: 5/6/2012 4:22 PM ET
Member Since: 1/27/2009
Posts: 46
Back To Top

I went to post some more books today, and found myself scanning through the pages, worrying about remainder marks on the outside of the book and scuffs on covers... I'm glad I'm not the only one who ended up consciously changing my habits!

I usually don't get books wet from reading in the tub, since I have a method for holding a book with one hand and turning pages with my thumb, but my hair is getting longer and dripping on things. I buy books used, and usually that means really really used, but I've gotten such nice books through here I feel I need to keep the quality up.

Date Posted: 5/6/2012 4:40 PM ET
Member Since: 7/19/2008
Posts: 15,485
Back To Top
I was being careful. But I gave up. I now carefully review the books before posting. Much nicer than a bath without a book. I have enough credit cushion to cover it.

I also have a stack of beach books, ones that are unpostable to take to the beach or pool.

Date Posted: 5/6/2012 4:50 PM ET
Member Since: 9/14/2008
Posts: 379
Back To Top

I am more carefully now. I have a cover and use a bookmark now.

Date Posted: 5/6/2012 5:11 PM ET
Member Since: 10/13/2010
Posts: 4,337
Back To Top

I try to stay pretty careful with them.  The main thing I've noticed is when I get books from thrift stores or yard sales, I tend to look them over to see if anyone wrote in them or highlighted in them.  It never bothered me before I joined this site, but nowadays I notice those things!

Date Posted: 5/6/2012 5:46 PM ET
Member Since: 1/17/2009
Posts: 10,282
Back To Top

I look at books more carefully before I buy them used. But I am not particularly more careful with books. I still stick them in my purse, for example. And sometimes they do get beat up. I still post them (as long as they are still postable).

The only thing that I don't do anymore that I used to do all the time, is bend back the spine. I used to like to loosen the spines up to make the books easier to read, and I stopped doing that. Now, I am much more careful with the spine.

And, I still dog ear them. Not a lot, since I usually read large chunks of books at a single sitting, anyway. But ... it doesn't bother me to do it.

Date Posted: 5/6/2012 7:57 PM ET
Member Since: 4/7/2008
Posts: 15,690
Back To Top

Yes, I got more careful with books. I starting using bookcovers (which have a built-in bookmark) and I'm careful while reading if I'm drinking or eating. I read a lot in the subway so when it rains, I don't take out the book but listen to my iPod (people come all wet and drip on you so I don't want the books to get water damage.)

Date Posted: 5/6/2012 8:38 PM ET
Member Since: 2/5/2007
Posts: 30,805
Back To Top

No - can't say that I do.  I am not crushed if I can't post every book I read.  Normally my books are fine to post.  But I enjoy my books while eating and at other times and one credit won't change that.  I am careful to NOT post books that I have marred in any way.

Date Posted: 5/6/2012 11:15 PM ET
Member Since: 5/25/2010
Posts: 262
Back To Top

I love all the responses about reading in the tub. I do that too, and it drives my husband crazy. But it's very rare that I mess up a book that way - the very occasional splash of a drop, and once or twice in more than three decades of this I've fallen asleep and dropped the book. (I've fallen asleep more times than that, but I usually catch myself before the book hits the water....)

And yes, I'm very careful about checking my books. I also hate that one drop on the counter!

But being on PBS doesn't change my habits. I have hundreds of books and most of them won't ever see my PBS bookshelf. In fact, I keep thinking that I'll have to stop sending out PBS books because I've already given up all the books that I care to part with. Of course, I've been thinking that for a year now and I still find books to add to my shelf about as fast as I request them, so it probably isn't true, but in any case the PBS requirements never affect my treatment of a book since I never intend to post any of them—until I do.

Date Posted: 5/7/2012 12:05 AM ET
Member Since: 12/11/2008
Posts: 42
Back To Top

I do look over my books more carefully when I buy them secondhand to see if they are postable or not.

But I still read in the tub...quite a lot.  In fact, PBS has facilitated that quite a bit.  I won't take a library book into the tub, but I will take a swapped book into the tub.  Because if I drop it (and this does happen several times per year) or turn pages with wet fingers, well I just can't repost that book.  That isn't a big deal.  But I still remember the day in elementary school when I dropped my library book in the rain the day it was due and had to (tearfully) tell the librarian about it.

Date Posted: 5/7/2012 2:22 PM ET
Member Since: 10/26/2008
Posts: 9,884
Back To Top

I took a WL book to the beach (I had JUST bought the stupid thing).  DH kindly moved the chairs closer to the shoreline so that we could keep a better eye on our stuff.  His hands were wet when he grabbed my book and closed it (he was careful to keep my spot, though...so he wasn't entirely thoughtless).  The edge of the book, the page I was reading, and the paperback cover are now all rippled.  I can't even say "But...but...but I got it that way!"

Last Edited on: 5/7/12 2:23 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 5/7/2012 2:32 PM ET
Member Since: 6/19/2008
Posts: 5,773
Back To Top

I've always been really good to my books , but more aware of it now. 

Lori . B.   its funny that you mention checking book conditions .I was recently at a UBS and seen a book I wanted and it looked like someone spilled water on it, I took it to the counter and said to the lady " This book has water damage"...LOL   I never would have thought that untill I mecame a member of PBS .

Date Posted: 5/7/2012 2:36 PM ET
Member Since: 4/5/2008
Posts: 1,869
Back To Top

Nope, I've always been way too careful with books.  Probably from when I was a child and I had to reread books often because I didn't have many!  Hubby has completely changed.  He used to be so careful that he wouldn't bend spines or anything.  Now, he will crease it open a bit more because he just can't see as well and it's easier on his hands so I guess he's gone in the wrong direction!  Plus, he'll drop a book a time or two when he falls asleep reading in his chair. I have to go over his books for damage before posting.  I need to think about a cover because I tend to toss one in my purse for appts. and they get more damaged on the edges.  I usually use an older book for those occasions.  I guess I never thought of a cover....hmmmm.  Food damage is more my problem.  If there is a messy food to get on a finger and miss before it gets on the page, that's me.  I also have to check for pieces of paper that I've stuck in a book as a marker.  I have a whole bunch of bookmarks, but I will stick paper in there to mark a quote or something and have to riffle the book to get out the random pieces of paper confetti that I leave in them!

Last Edited on: 5/7/12 2:36 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 5/7/2012 5:26 PM ET
Member Since: 10/21/2010
Posts: 758
Back To Top

I was probably just as careful before I joined PBS, but I do put more effort into examing used books before I buy them to make sure that they're in postable condition.

And I get very cranky when I lend books out to friends and they come back to me with water damage or food stains, as happened to me last week. I'm not hurting for credits, I just hate that I can't post a book that has 500+ people wishing for it!

Date Posted: 5/8/2012 8:40 AM ET
Member Since: 2/2/2010
Posts: 1,208
Back To Top

Yes!  And I hate that I worry so much about it now!  With summer and pool time here I will hesitate to read my WL books near the water.  No matter how careful I am something often happens, like the kids end up going in my pool bag dripping wet.  I end up with a "pool or beach" book and a bedside table book going at the same time.  Last year when we went to the beach for a month I took a whole box of books, but I limited myself to books that had too many copies in the system, that I knew I wouldn’t repost anyway, and then I was able to just leave them at the beach cottage too.  It was a good way to get some Nicholas Sparks, Chick Lit, etc. off my TBR, but I hate that I felt like I didn’t read anything great that whole trip! 

But I am glad to know that I am not alone!

Date Posted: 5/8/2012 8:53 AM ET
Member Since: 8/10/2005
Posts: 4,603
Back To Top

I don't do anything differently, although I have always treated my books with a certain amount of care, so I don't feel that I *need* to do anything differently.