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Topic: What's That Smell?

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Subject: What's That Smell?
Date Posted: 2/4/2014 6:38 PM ET
Member Since: 4/6/2008
Posts: 1,036
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I just received a wishlisted book.  At first glance, the book looked fine.  I started flipping through the pages, and Ewww...what a smell.  Then I noticed dark stains (droplets) throughout the book.  Of course, I marked RWAP.  In the message, I asked what the stains were that caused that smell. No answer from the member yet.   I am very insensitive to smell (I never accept RC's that have anything to do with that).  But, this was overwhelming. It smelled like gasoline, kerosene, or some kind of chemical.

 Any suggestions to what it could be?

Date Posted: 2/4/2014 11:49 PM ET
Member Since: 12/28/2006
Posts: 14,177
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Smell can be subjective so if pressed you probably want to emphasize that you RWAP'd the book for stains.

Guessing...pet urine can have a strong odor. 

Date Posted: 2/4/2014 11:58 PM ET
Member Since: 4/6/2008
Posts: 1,036
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I really don't think it was pet urine. I think that whatever the dark droplets of staining is what caused the smell.  The droplets are darker than urine, not yellowish, etc. 

Date Posted: 2/5/2014 1:46 PM ET
Member Since: 4/6/2008
Posts: 1,036
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I received a message from the member.  He said he received the book from PBS and there were no stains or chemical smell.  That it had to have happened in transit to me.  I replied that the mailer was in good condition with no damage, not torn, etc.  And that I looked inside to see if there was anything inside that could have caused it.

Date Posted: 2/5/2014 5:24 PM ET
Member Since: 4/28/2009
Posts: 9,671
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Wonder if sender sprayed it with something to cover up a smoky or musty smell?  His cover story that NOTHING was wrong with it when he mailed it obviously isn't supported by the evidence.  but sounds like YOU are losing out here. 

Date Posted: 2/5/2014 8:58 PM ET
Member Since: 9/8/2009
Posts: 619
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I don't know how far you want to pursue it, but you might want to send pictures of the stain damage.  If by some chance you have the package it was mailed in, photograph that, too. 
 

Date Posted: 2/6/2014 5:00 AM ET
Member Since: 4/6/2008
Posts: 1,036
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I don't know what is going on, but I have been getting so many unpostable books lately.  A week ago, a member told me that the book had been on their Reminder List and had not read it.  They sent me "2 credits".  And I replied that I appreciated their honesty, but was not expecting 2 credits back.  So, I guess in this case, I will be losing a credit, but some other "very nice" member ended up covering a credit lost.  The book is "readable".  But, I will try something to get rid of the terrible smell first.  

My mom was terrible with books.  She sprayed every book with Lysol and marked out every "bad word."  She would not ever been able to be a member of PBS.  But, I miss her....