Sunday, January 25, 2009

Sunday Salon: Weird Economics

I haven't had a whole lot of time to read this past week so I'm still reading Miss Smilla's Feeling for Snow by Peter Høeg. It's a little slow going but only because the prose is a little dense in places, in a well-written, thoughtful, good kind of way. It's very readable though and I'm thoroughly enjoying it. However I did make some progress on it today as we went into Tokyo this afternoon and I had some time to read it on the train. I don't have to commute too much for work anymore, which is great, but I admit that when I did, the extra reading time was nice.

Anyway, one of our stops today was checking out a used bookstore that we'd heard had a fair selection of English books. They did indeed have a reasonable selection but they were quite expensive. Most of the trade paperbacks were 1000 yen (with the current exchange rate it works out to approx. US$11.25 or GBP 8.25!!). They did have a clearance area of books for 200 yen which is of course where I mostly browsed. I only found one book though, and it's actually one I've already read and have my own copy of, but it was a nice clean copy and I plan to give it away. So a little disappointing. Not that I need any more books but you know what I mean. It seems quite bizarre and wrong somehow that especially given the current exchange rate (strong yen, weak pound) and the fact that The Book Depository has free worldwide shipping, that I can order completely new books, shipped to me from halfway around the world for cheaper than I can buy the same here used! Ah well, thank goodness for the internet!

On that note, I think it's time to curl up with a kitty and get back to my book. I keep thinking about it when I'm not reading it and can't wait to find out how it all turns out. Always a good sign.
Have a great week and happy reading!

Week in Review:
Sunday Salon: Reading Retrospective
Weekend Snapshot: The cat who lost his meow
It's Tuesday... and I've been lazy (memes)
Review: Rashomon and other stories by Ryunosuke Akutagawa
Japanese Literature Challenge 2 completed

9 comments:

  1. It must be frustrating to have such difficulties finding inexpensively priced books. If mailing rates hadn't gone up so much last summer, I'd be happy to mail you some books. I bought sixty yesterday for 25 cents and 10 cents.

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  2. Hi Nat :)
    Sorry about your search for english language books, we never have enough books, right? and yes the internet is great for shopping :P

    Glad you enjoy SMILLA'S.......i liked it a lot.

    Have a nice week

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  3. It's the same for me...it's much cheaper to order a book through The Book Depository than to buy it at a local bookstore. I don't know what I'd do without them :P

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  4. I knew the pound was down but not that much! I'll have to hit up the book depository.

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  5. I didn't have much time to spend reading this past week either, Nat. I am glad you were able to fit in some reading time today though.

    The Book Depository does come in handy, doesn't it?

    Have a great week!

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  6. Ola! Wow...used books in Japan are expensive, aren't they? I watched the movie version of the book some years ago and like the book, it was very slow but beautifully filmed. There are days when I do feel like slowing down with a book that unwinds slowly. Your winter pixs, by the way, are gorgeous!

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  7. debnance - I like to complain about it but in a way it's probably a good thing. I know I wouldn't be able to resist such cheap books and I already have no more space to put the ones I do have! :P
    Thanks for thinking of me though. I don't know why the US mailing rates are so high!

    Sylvie - It's ok, I buy most of my books online so I wasn't really expecting to find many at the used book store. I was a little surprised at just how expensive they were though.

    Nymeth - Yes, I hope they can withstand any economic downturn. I'd certainly buy less books if they weren't around!

    Chris - Yup, it's a good time to shop in British pounds from another currency! Have fun deciding what to get. :P

    Wendy - It was so nice to sit and read for awhile, mostly uninterrupted. I hope you have a good week too, and manage to fit in some more reading time this week.

    indigo - That's why I rarely end up buying used here. I'd much rather have a new book for a couple dollars more than a dirty, beat up one. Or in this case when the new ones are sometimes even cheaper. LOL.
    I'm definitely going to have to see if I can watch the film after I'm done the book. And thanks. :)

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  8. Ooh I hate it when a trip to the bookstore is disappointing. Even if I already have tons of books.

    So did you end up doing a bit of Book Depository shopping? :)

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  9. Iliana - LOL. I had ordered a couple of books before we went but I think I'm going to order a couple more this weekend. I'm hopeless! :P

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