Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Book Condition?

So, recently I was thinking book condition and if it matters.

I actually collect old books like the one on the right specifically because they're old and in bad condition. I never have any intention of reading these books, but they just look so cool and so loved.

However, I know that my copy of Twilight is in really poor condition from being passed around to so many people, and it kills me. And whenever one of my friends borrows one of my books (I'm basically their library) that I've read and loved, they know that they need to be extra careful with it. This also goes for my ARCs.

So, I guess I care. Especially if it's one of my favorites. But if I'm in Goodwill and I see a book that sounds good, but the cover is torn up and there are creases in the spine, then I still won't hesitate to buy it.

What about you? Does a creased spine make you gag? Or is it dogeared pages that turn you off from buying a book? Or could you really not care less as long as it's readable? And, when you win a book in a blog contest, does the book have to be in pristine condition?



  1. I like to keep my books in great condition. The other day I was fixing my bookcase and I accidentally moved one book so that it bent a little of the hardcover jacket and now that it's creased, it's kind of driving me crazy lol. But I'm like this with all of my possessions. I like to take good care of my things or try to at least. That's cool that you collect worn in books though. :)

  2. In general, I like to keep my books in pretty good condition. However, I love used books that are a little worn and feel like they have some history to them, but I'm not a fan of dogeared pages. I don't mind some wear or wrinkling on the spine, though; that makes it feel well-loved.

    I like to write and highlight my books, but I don't like when I buy them and they are marked up already (unless there are some particularly insightful notes). I guess when I write in the book, I appreciate it because I know the meaning and intentionality behind it, but I rarely understand the reasons for other peoples' notation.

    I'll pick up pretty junky looking books from a library booksale or something like that if they are cheap. If I really love the book, I might purchase a new, clean copy. When I get books from contests, I expect them to be in pretty good condition, but I don't mind if there is some sign that they have been read already.

  3. I have to say I am pretty anal about book condition. I love them in PERFECT condition. So exemple I read Fallen in PB but it's really thick and I damaged the spine while reading even though I was careful, so I went out and bought a HC fo it would stay pretty. Told you, I'm a nutjob.
    I don't lend my books to anyone unless I have doubles, but none of them are as careful as I am.
    And I'm really sad when my books are damaged in the shipping =(

  4. I keep all of my new books (within the last year) in great condition. I even dust my bookcase one a week. I always remove the jacket from a hardcover when I read it so it won't get messed up.

    However, I LOVE old books in bad condition. When a book's pages are all crispy and make a lot of noise when you turn them - that's my favorite! I'll even get the book just for looks and the feel of it - with no intention of reading it!

  5. I like a book that's in good condition. Creased edges don't bother me too much because I can press them straight again. Highlighting and writing is a total no no for me.

  6. I am one of those that will read/re-read/re-read a book. I keep it till it falls apart and then buy it again. The books I collect go on a shelf and are never touched. So I have books in both conditions :)

  7. Funny, my Twilight copy (the original, I have two, one that i keep and one is the "lend") is so beat up it is taped together and has a rubber band around it. If a book is that worn, I wouldn't hesitate to buy it

  8. If I can read it, I love it. :) I've been reading your blog for a while and I love it! We were in ATC swaps for a while. :D

  9. For me it really depends on the book and whether or not it was used before I bought it.
    I will buy a used book with little to moderate damage, but if it's a book that I've been searching for forever, I'll go with a really damaged copy until a better one is found.
    If they're new, I like to keep them in as new of condition as possible.
    But, like you, I also love investing in really old books. I have a copy of Alcott's Little Men that has writing all in it and the front cover torn off but I love the book.

  10. Personally, I don't mind creased pages/dogeared pages or a creased spine. I dogear all my books, I think it shows that they're well loved!

    But for me, I cannot STAND writing, highlighting and MOST OF ALL- food stains. If I see a greasy fingerprint or something like that, I cringe away from the book. It takes all of my willpower not to be distracted by that stain the entire time I'm on the page. So gross.

  11. Creased pages, spines or even dogeared pages do not really bother me. They give the book character. If a book has a lot of wear, then I consider it a well read book.

    Now, food stains or even finding a half eaten sandwich, I pass on.

  12. I'm not super fussy about the condition of books. I sort of like when they look loved. So a little creasing here and there is fine, but actual damage drives me insane.

  13. I love old bad condition books they have character I have extremes I either want a mint condition book or a really dirty bad condition book, Do you know any websites that offer any bad books


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