I remember the day my mom told me a family friend of ours was opening up a used bookstore in our hometown.
“It’s called Shabby Pages. It’s going to sell mainly used books, and right now they’re only accepting donations, but I think later on you’ll be able to trade in for store credit.”
This information made seventh-grade Eric pretty happy. Not only could I stop begging my mom to make the 25 minute drive to Barnes and Noble, but I could also get books for hella cheap. At the same time, though, I was a little iffy on the whole thing because I had this aversion to buying used books, specifically paperbacks. If I didn’t put the creases in the spine, the book was no good. I was the only one who could damage my shit.
A couple weeks passed and we visited the store. It wasn’t too big, probably less than a quarter of the size of a typical chain store, but the walls were lined with books. Since the store was just starting out, the owner got her hands on pretty much whatever she could and sold it. As I walked around the store, I saw so many unfamiliar names that I was disappointed. Where was D.J. MacHale (my favorite author at the time, who wrote the ever-so-wonderful Pendragon series)? Dan Gutman? Eoin Colfer? Of course, the reason I didn’t know any names is because up until that point in my life I had been reading YA. That changed before I walked out of the store. Continue reading