(An update by Susan Siegel, co-author and publisher of the Used Book Lover’s Guides, the series of seven regional guides to 8,000 used book dealers in the United States and Canada.)
Just as the Internet has dramatically changed the business of buying and selling used books, the computer has also changed the way Book Hunter Press delivers the information contained in the Used Book Lover’s Guides to its target audience: traveling bibliophiles.
First published in 1993 as travel guides for book lovers who enjoyed browsing used bookstores, and kept up to date with new editions and annual print supplements, beginning in 2000 the entire Book Hunter Press database was put online, giving bibliophiles instant access to the constantly changing world of used booksellers.
Today, the Book Hunter Press database remains the most comprehensive and continuously updated online directory of brick and mortar used bookstores in the United States and Canada. By accessing the database, traveling book buyers can learn if there are used bookstores in or near the cities they’ll be visiting or passing through and whether those stores are likely to have the types of books they’re looking for.
Some things change but others remain constant. The Guides continue to include all three categories of dealers: open shops, by appointment dealers, and Internet only dealers, as well as antique malls where dealers have booths. In recent years, however, as used book buying patterns have changed, updates to the Guides have focused primarily on open shops. And, as the name implies, the Guides continue to list only dealers who sell used books, although they do include dealers who sell both new and used books. The Guides do not include shops that sell only used paperbacks.
Dealer listings remain free, but the online version does give dealers the option to upgrade their listing in order to give their business greater visibility.
And, unlike other online book dealer directories that rely on dealers to submit listing information, Book Hunter Press continues to take the initiative in searching out new shops to add to the database while continuing to update existing listings. This extra effort results in more dealer listings and more useful and accurate information.
For bibliophiles not yet familiar with the Online Used Book Lover’s Guides, the database contains the same basic information that book lovers have found useful in the print guides for so many years, plus the ability to search the database by any combination of the following eight search criteria:
Specialty (from a list of 1,400 possible subject headings)
State or province
Size of the collection
Type of dealer: open shop, by appointment, mail order/Internet only, antique mall
Type of collection: general or specialty
Along the interstate highway network
Visitors to bookhunterpress.com who already have the latest edition of the print guides have the added option of being able to search the database to bring up ALL the dealers who meet their search criteria, OR only dealers who have been added to the database since the current edition of the print guide was published, OR only dealers whose listings in the print guide have been changed.
Full access to the online database is available on a subscription basis, although non-subscribers can do limited searches for free. Also available are special book/subscription packages that, at a substantial savings, enable book lovers to combine the convenience of the print guides with the most up-to-date dealer information in the online database.
The Guides cover the following seven regions:
Mid-Atlantic States (NY, NJ, PA, DE)
South Atlantic States (along the Atlantic coast from MD to FL)
Midwest (a 10 state region)
Central/Western States (a diverse collection of 19 states)
Pacific Coast States (CA, OR, WA, AK, HI)
Canada (the entire country)
More information about the Used Book Lover’s Guides, including an Information Form dealers can use to submit their new listing, or update an existing listing, and/or information on how to order one or more of the seven regional Guides, is available at http://bookhunterpress.com, or by contacting Book Hunter Press directly at firstname.lastname@example.org or (914) 245-6608.