I know that this post is quite late since garage sale season is almost over, but I still feel the need to share. I was raised on garage sales. My mom loves them, and they lure her in like sirens calling to a ship full of pirates. Every time my mom comes and visits me in the spring or summer she'll say "We stopped at two rummage sales and this is what I got!" Or sometimes she'll comment on how they need to learn to price their stuff, or that she knows they have better stuff in the house and they are just holding out on her.
Sidenote: I really think that my mom should write a rummage sale book, about pricing, organization, general tips, that kind of thing. She's an expert at this stuff and I think her knowledge of second-hand clothing and housewares could solve all of our economic woes.
Anyway, my sister inherited my mom's full, unrestrained love for rummage sales, but I'm a little more hesitant about them. Doug hates when I bring home clutter, and I just don't have the patience or creative vision for some stuff. But I valiantly tried to shop rummage sales this summer and guess what I brought home: books.
My problem with rummage sales is that I feel compelled to buy something from the people, especially if there are adorable little kids running around and books seem like a harmless enough purchase. I did buy a couple books for Anthony, which are easy to ship and pretty disposable as he ages, unlike toys. But I also bought several books for myself, mainly those by Sarah Dessen and Sharon Creech.
First up, Sarah Dessen. I picked up these two books for a dollar at one rummage sale. I'd never read Sarah Dessen, but I knew she published a ton of books, and I was under the impression that she wrote cozy, innocent, small town books for teen girls. Not so much! If you read my post from Friday, you'll know that in Someone Like You, a girl has sex for the first time, her boyfriend dies the next day, and she must carry his love child in shame until she delivers on prom night. Keeping the Moon is a little less heavy handed, but the love-yourself-no-matter-what-others-say-message is pretty forced as well. Both of these books were early Sarah Dessen, and according to the Goodreads reviews, she's come a long way since. Were these two books worthy of my dollar-absolutely! I got to read an author that I'd heard a ton about, but never read before. And just because she's not my cup of vanilla soy latte doesn't mean that she's a bad author. I'd recommend her to a reader.
Next up, two Sharon Creech books purchased from my neighbors for maybe $0.50. These were in pretty bad shape, so both are destined for the trash can when I'm done reading them. They were a little water damaged and worn, but there was still one reading left in them. I'd read Walk Two Moons in grad school. Actually, I didn't like the book and didn't finish it before my lit class, but after everyone talked about it, I went back and finished it. Sharon Creech is great at the meaningful, optimistic tale. Chasing Redbird is about a young girl mourning her aunt and finding her place in the family by escaping the family for a while. In Bloomability, a young girl leaves her rather dysfunctional family to attend a boarding school in Switzerland. Both books are quick, light, and full of heartfelt hope. Plus, they both oddly connect toward the end. Even though they take place a world apart, they both have a homespun feel and the characters are simple, honest, hardworking folk. I enjoyed getting Sharon Creech for a bargain and would always take that gamble again.
I also picked up some adult books at rummage sales this summer that I'll likely never read. I grabbed Loving Frank, A Million Little Pieces, and The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, not to mention The Help, which I got at a silent auction this winter. I'll probably read The Help sometime, but the others will eventually go on my own garage sale.
Overall verdict of garage sale books, buy the children's and YA books, but skip the adult books, and beware guys that are too salesmen-y. I ended up with a bunch of golf balls that way, and my hubby was not impressed.