Books & More Books for Summer Reading!
Friday, June 27, 2008
I am a voracious reader (that is, I read a LOT) and am always running out of books. I have to have a stack on hand so that I know I always have reading material, because I go a bit buggy without it.
Now, I am a great fan of public libraries myself, and have used them since I was a little girl and there was a library around the corner from my elementary school. But nowadays in L.A., there are no branches directly in my path, and - alas! I discover that whenever I take out books, I seem to incur hefty library fines.
So I prefer to have my own stacks of books. I have outlets to get them - various 2nd hand book stores and library sales, where I stock up - and some thrift shops which I comb for mysteries and the like (I found a 3 volume set of the essays of the French philosopher Montaigne at my old ladies thrift shop this time, along with the pulp fiction, for my more elevated reading.)
But I am always hunting for new outlets. I had a pile of mysteries I was trying to recycle, and I saw that there was a book exchange at the Santa Monica Emeritus College office, where I have my scene class. So this time I brought 2 bags of paperbacks, and didn't feel guilty when I took a stack in exchange. Some nice British mysteries there - someone has the same taste as me!
I also just ran across a new source of online books at http://onlinebooks.library.upenn.edu which seems to be at the University of Pennsylvania library. It has a collection of curiosities which tickle my fancy - including a collection of women's biography and literature - all the queer old books I look for in 2nd hand book stores. But here they are online - GRATIS!
Trouble is, I have a problem reading books from my computer terminal - so I decided to try to download a book to a CD and read it on my husband's laptop. (I like the idea of the handheld devices - but whew! $300??) I copied the book, the Memoires of Mme. Figee-LeBrun (a female French painter, who did portraits of Marie Antoinette) to a text file, and then saved it in Word on my hard drive.
THEN with a little help from my husband (actually he did it), and with the software to burn DATA cds, we burned a CD - which THEN I put on his laptop and started to read propped up on the bed. I could even enlarge the print to make it easier to read! Voila! a 250+ page book for the cost of a cd - almost gratis!
We have another old Apple laptop which my husband uses for games for his pupils - and we will try to find some WORD for that so I can use that as a computer reader, too! (And I won't have to worry about my husband's laptop from work.)
Now I am looking forward to reading through the collection at the U. of Penn online. They even have a group of old etiquette books, and I always find those fascinating! Not so good for the beach, perhaps - but maybe for the beach HOUSE? And I can't read on the beach anyway! Too much glare. Give me a porch. Happy reading!
3 Comments | Post Feedback
Too many books? Impossible!
Sunday, July 06, 2008 | By Bttrfly
There are 2 websites where you can trade books. One is www.bookins.com. and the other one is www.paperbackswap.com. I use both of those all the time.
Wednesday, February 25, 2009 | By Enci
Another way to go even more thrifty is to put the book on a USB port (also called flash drive) and transfer the files from one computer to another.
USB ports can be reused and rewritten over and over again, whereas CDs you can only use once and it will very likely end up in the land fill. :-( Also, one can get USB ports that hold more storage then the 700MB CD in case your book is very long. :-)
Of course you can also just hook up the computers with a USB cable or fire wire and turn on file sharing and transfer the files without any extra waste at all. :-)
Friday, February 27, 2009 | By pamphyila
Ha! I never thought about a USB port - you are very sophisticated technically - wht else do you hv up yr sleeve? Hi Enci! Nice to know you are reading the blog here.
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