Saturday Afternoon Book Expedition   Leave a comment

I like and enjoy a lot of things in life, but when I try to figure out what is my favorite, I think it has to be books and reading (including comics). I knew there was a graphic novel waiting for me at the library, and comics waiting for me at Samurai Comics. I had books by the door I’ve been wanting to unload for weeks now. With those incentives I set off on a Saturday afternoon book expedition.

What I started with . . . everything on the car seat needs to go away.

What I started with . . . everything on the car seat needs to go away.

First stop: Yucca Branch Library. This is my local branch and where i pick up and drop off most of the things i get from the Phoenix Library system.

First stop: Yucca Branch Library. This is my local branch and where i pick up and drop off most of the things i get from the Phoenix Library system.

This was my prize. Nightwing graphic novel #5--a retelling of Nightwing's (Dick Grayson) origin story in the new 52 continuity.

This was my prize. Nightwing graphic novel #5–a retelling of Nightwing’s (Dick Grayson) origin story in the new 52 continuity.

Where the Good Stuff is--the graphic novels/manga section in the Teen area of Yucca Branch Library.

Where the Good Stuff is–the graphic novels/manga section in the Teen area of Yucca Branch Library.

What was in the car after coming out of the library.

What was in the car after coming out of the library.

Second stop: Samurai Comics at 11th Street and Cameback in uptown Phoenix.

Second stop: Samurai Comics at 11th Street and Cameback in uptown Phoenix.

Front door of the shop. This store is just jammed with Too Much Good Stuff.

Front door of the shop. This store is just jammed with Too Much Good Stuff.

What was waiting for me inside . . . my ship came in and I had $17 worth of comics waiting.  Conand/Red Sonja crossover, new Groo series starting, 2 issues of John Carter of Mars that I had missed, and there were freebies including a huge book advertising all the New  52 graphic novels currently available from D.C. comics.  It was quite a haul.

What was waiting for me inside . . . my ship came in and I had $17 worth of comics waiting. Conan/Red Sonja crossover, new Groo series starting, 2 issues of John Carter of Mars that I had missed, and there were freebies including a huge book advertising all the New 52 graphic novels currently available from D.C. comics. It was quite a haul.

Where the Good Stuff is: the back wall of the shop has the rack of all the new comics for the week.

Where the Good Stuff is: the back wall of the shop has the rack of all the new comics for the week.

Where the bargains are: rack after rack of comics for $1 each--mostly old Silver Age stuff.

Where the bargains are: rack after rack of comics for $1 each–mostly old Silver Age stuff.

Where the Weird Stuff is: independents and toys and comic related items like clothing and mugs are on free-standing racks in the middle of the store.

Where the Weird Stuff is: independents and toys and comic related items like clothing and mugs are on free-standing racks in the middle of the store.

There is a huge rack of back issues still on sale at cover price along the west wall of the store. The trick is to wait for a sale and then go cherry pick that wall of stuff you just didn't quite buy the first time you saw it.

There is a huge rack of back issues still on sale at cover price along the west wall of the store. The trick is to wait for a sale and then go cherry pick that wall of stuff you just didn’t quite buy the first time you saw it.

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Third stop on the trip: Half Price Books at 22nd Street and Camelback.

Third stop on the trip: Half Price Books at 22nd Street and Camelback.

This is all the stuff I t r aded in, about 10 items. The store was busy and I had to wait more than half an hour for my appraisal. They gave me $2.50 for the whole lot. Any single item in the batch cost more than that retail, but it beats throwing the books away or donating to the library, who would then throw them away/

This is all the stuff I traded in, about 10 items. The store was busy and I had to wait more than half an hour for my appraisal. They gave me $2.50 for the whole lot. Any single item in the batch cost more than that retail, but it beats throwing the books away or donating to the library, who would then throw them away.

The science fiction/fantasy section of Half Price Books. Back in the Day I would have gone through every rack, looked at every title, and bought every sword and sorcery/heroic fantasy title i found. Now, I just walk by, glance at the ones turned cover out, and feel nostalgic. Buying all the fantasy would cost hundreds of dollars even at half price. Reading it would take more time than I ever expect to have again.

The science fiction/fantasy section of Half Price Books. Back in the Day I would have gone through every rack, looked at every title, and bought every sword and sorcery/heroic fantasy title i found. Now, I just walk by, glance at the ones turned cover out, and feel nostalgic. Buying all the fantasy would cost hundreds of dollars even at half price. Reading it would take more time than I ever expect to have again.

J.R.R. Tolkien still inspires ciriticism and explanation. I think I will see if the library bought this book.

J.R.R. Tolkien still inspires ciriticism and explanation. I think I will see if the library bought this book.

Where the  Good Stuff Is: this locked bookcase has the used and half price tarot and other cool card sets. I collect tarot decks, and I can read the cards when I want to.

Where the Good Stuff Is: this locked bookcase has the used and half price tarot and other cool card sets. I collect tarot decks, and I can read the cards when I want to.

Where the Wizards go. The store has 2 tall bookcases full of books on magic and the occult arts. Since I am a wizard I always check this are to see what's new.

Where the Wizards go. The store has 2 tall bookcases full of books on magic and the occult arts. Since I am a wizard I always check this are to see what’s new.

The store has a small section for Gaming also. There's a deal here with a Monstrous Compendium for players of That Other Game. I was kind of tempted by the Risk set for $15.00.

The store has a small section for Gaming also. There’s a deal here with a Monstrous Compendium for players of That Other Game. I was kind of tempted by the Risk set for $15.00.

The games are right next to the grajphic novel section.

The games are right next to the grajphic novel section.

I made one purchase at Half Price Books. The Zombie Tarot deck was a bizarre addition to my already bizarre collection of strange tarot decks. This is what was in the car when I left Half Price. As you can see, the seat never really got any emptier.

I made one purchase at Half Price Books. The Zombie Tarot deck was a bizarre addition to my already bizarre collection of strange tarot decks. This is what was in the car when I left Half Price. As you can see, the seat never really got any emptier.

Fourth and final stop of the afternoon: Changing Hands Bookstore at 3rd Ave. and Camelback. Now I am on the homeward leg of the journey.

Fourth and final stop of the afternoon: Changing Hands Bookstore at 3rd Ave. and Camelback. Now I am on the homeward leg of the journey.

Changing Hands is an upscale independent bookstore. It is a beautiful place and very friendly to bibliophiles.

Changing Hands is an upscale independent bookstore. It is a beautiful place and very friendly to bibliophiles.

Where the Good Stuff Is: the bar. In addition to books and knick-knackery, Changing Hands has a bar where one can get drinks and snacks.

Where the Good Stuff Is: the bar. In addition to books and knick-knackery, Changing Hands has a bar where one can get drinks and snacks.

The most interesting book I saw in Changing Hands--a massive annotated collection of the works of H.P. Lovecraft. I would like to have it, but it's $39.99 and I don't want to spend that kind of money on it.

The most interesting book I saw in Changing Hands–a massive annotated collection of the works of H.P. Lovecraft. I would like to have it, but it’s $39.99 and I don’t want to spend that kind of money on it.

A closeup of the science fiction/fantasy section in the store.

A closeup of the science fiction/fantasy section in the store.

And here I am enjoying a really good cup of coffee and a blueberry muffin at the bar. I didn't buy any books here today--the place is really too upscale for a poor man like me, but what a great place to hang out. My thanks to the beautiful bartender who took my picture.

And here I am enjoying a really good cup of coffee and a blueberry muffin at the bar. I didn’t buy any books here today–the place is really too upscale for a poor man like me, but what a great place to hang out. My thanks to the beautiful bartender who took my picture.

So, if you’ve ever visited any of these locations, or devoted a good part of a day to just going where the books are, then why not leave a comment?

–end

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Posted January 25, 2015 by atroll in Uncategorized

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