Award-Winning Book Hunting Expeditions Picture Books Young Adult (YA) Literature

BHE (20): The Day I Went to Book Off and All Hell Broke LOOT

Hooray for our 20th Book Hunting Expedition!! Today I’m going to share with you the loot I got from Book Off, when I went book-hunting a few weeks ago. After a delicious late Korean lunch with three of my girlfriends, I headed straight to Book Off to browse books. Lies. Book hunter fact #1: Book hunters never go home empty handed. Haha!

A cheap bookstore is always a dangerous path for a book hunter to tread. But we all know that book hunters simply cannot resist the call of books. I started out with a few picture books, and ended up going home with a box full of books! The lady at the counter did not even bother putting my books in plastic bags. She grabbed the nearest box she could find.

Picture Books

Let’s begin with a Gathering Books favorite: dynamic duo Jon Scieszka and Lane Smith. Math Curse. I was hoping it was similar to Science Verse so I can feature this for Poetry Friday, but this is more prose than poetry.

Two more Max Lucado’s books! Best of All and If Only I Had a Green Nose are sequels to You Are Special which I featured for It’s Monday What Are You Reading? These were the only copies in the shelf so I grabbed them to my heart’s content.

Finally bought my own copy of another Gathering Books favorite: Chris Van Allsburg. The Polar Express was featured in Myra’s Green Apple book post. I can’t wait to grab a copy of the movie as well.

I got lucky with these two finds: Jerry Scott’s Rude, Crude, and Tattooed (a ZITS comics collection) and Madonna’s Mr. Peabody’s Apples.

As much as I would love to grab all M. Sasek country picture books, I decided to grab only one. I chose This is Ireland from the shelf because I’ve always wanted to go backpacking in Ireland. Someday, people, someday. Also discovered this cutesy picture book by Princess Martha Louise based on the childhood of her grandfather King Olav V. Here she’ll tell you Why Kings and Queens Don’t Wear Crowns.

Young Adult Books

While I’ve seen Jennifer L. Holm’s Newbery Honor Book, Penny from Heaven, a few times in Barnes & Noble, it was my first encounter with K.P. Bath’s The Secret of Castle Cant. Looks interesting to me.

Here’s to acquaint myself with the works of Michael Dorris and Patricia Maclachlan with Guests and Tomorrow’s Wizard, respectively. The cover photo of Guests bring to mind Japanese animated films, especially Hayao Miyazaki’s My Neighbor Totoro. Tomorrow’s Wizard reminds me of the cover photo of J.R.R. Tolkien’s Roverandom.

Popular Manga, Fantasy, and Non-Fiction

Japanese manga are not cheap, even in a place like Book Off. While I didn’t save a lot of money when I bought these, I could not resist the compulsion to buy. I’ve been wanting to own the entire manga series of my all-time favorite anime, Rurouni Kenshin (or Samurai X, as known in some places). The manga was written by Nobuhiro Watsuki. With each book being sold for $7 (originally priced at $10), I bought the first nine (9) books in the series. I haven’t touched it yet, but let it be known that once I open the first page, there’s no stopping. I’ll be sure to return to Book Off to get more.

I got a little too excited when I saw this glossy illustrated version of Stardust by Neil Gaiman and Charles Vess. These two are no strangers to Gathering Books. I have featured a few Neil Gaiman works, and Myra wrote a lovely review of Instructions, a picture book collaboration of these two. Hiromu Arakawa created this really cool anime profiles of Full Metal Alchemist. For those of you who are fans of the FMA series, you’ll get a kick out of this book. It is both funny and informative.

I was going to post this for Featured Book of the Day but I thought it wasn’t too mainstream to go crazy about. Yet, this book is a gem. Who among you here love Oscar Wilde? Please raise your hand! I enjoyed reading The Picture of Dorian Gray and I was so ecstatic when I saw that it was included in ShortList Magazine’s list of Literature’s Greatest Closing Paragraphs. The ending of Wilde’s book was truly dramatic. Before I rattle about how spellbinding The Picture of Dorian Gray is, let me redirect my (and perhaps your) focus to Merlin Holland’s The Real Trial of Oscar Wilde. I don’t know how much of this is true, but I’d like to believe that this is the real deal. The book was not written in narrative form; rather, Martin Holland presents the trial of Oscar Wilde in a script form, as each page documents the events that transpired during that fateful day. I was seriously geeking out.


If I geeked out when I saw The Real Trial of Oscar Wilde, I almost had a heart attack when I chanced upon Art Spiegelman’s MAUS I. The book was meant, if not dying, to be found. Myra also featured this in her Green Apple book post. Now the hunt for MAUS II begins!!

Have you read any of the books listed above?
What about you? Have you done any book hunting lately?
We’d love to hear from you! Share us your thoughts below!

Fats is the Assistant Manager for Circulation Services at the Wayne County Public Library in Wooster, Ohio. She considers herself a reader of all sorts, although she needs to work on her non-fiction reading. Fats likes a good mystery but is not too fond of thrillers. She takes book hoarding seriously and enjoys collecting bookmarks and tote bags. When she is not reading, Fats likes to shop pet apparel for her cat Penny (who absolutely loathes it).

5 comments on “BHE (20): The Day I Went to Book Off and All Hell Broke LOOT

  1. I LOVELOVELOVE that box, such a familiar sight. Haha. This Book Off Place is in need of my visit too, methinks. I have a copy of Math Curse, courtesy of Ela’s godmother who bought it for her from Canada. I think I already bought two copies of Polar Express – but each one has been given away to nephews in the States. I love your YA fiction titles as they’re all unfamiliar to me. The Oscar Wilde one too seems like a good find. And of course MAUS. You have got to find Maus II and FAST! 🙂


  2. Maus is a treasure to be sure. I love Math Curse, too. I have read a few of the others, but you really found some good ones, Fats. I am especially interested in the Michael Dorris and Patricia MacLachlan ones, two authors I like but I don’t know of either book. There’s always a surprise, isn’t there? Great “loot”!


  3. Pingback: Reading in September: A Round Up and AWB Reading Challenge «

  4. Wow – That was a great day of hunting! I like the look of Math Curse and of course the Max Lucado books are wonderful to share. Happy Reading!


  5. Pingback: BHE (32): Goodwill During the Holiday Season «

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