5017 Excelsior Blvd., St. Louis Park, MN | Directions 5541644.931342 -93.345954
M-Sa 9am-9pm, Su 10am-8pm
I've never had a bad experience at half price books. I've sold many books to them over the ten years I've shopped/sold there and have had no problems. The only thing I wouldn't bother selling to them are magazines, since it's not worth the effort of collecting and taking them to the store. I agree with Katty K, many people on here are expecting far more money than what their books are worth. If you do want to get the best price for your stuff take things in often while it's still current. Once it's even a year or two old, it's trade in value will be far less.
I honestly do not understand the criticism of this store. Frankly I think people vastly overestimate how much the books they’re selling are worth. I’ve asked employees what to bring in and what not to bring in based on the needs of the store. Bestsellers and coffee table books don’t sell well unless they are at their peak popularity, a lot of nonfiction is considered dated a few years after publication, used children’s books typically have more wear and tear, and mass-market paperbacks initially sell cheaply. They’re looking for books that will sell but won’t be overstocked and many books do not fit this description. If you aren’t satisfied with the price offered, you’re certainly welcome to refuse the sale. I’m sure there are some books that should fetch a better price that what’s offered, but I’ve found it’s mostly fair, especially considering how little a profit the store would make if they gave more money per book. Most of the books for sale in the store are offered at half of the sticker price, many for less than that. So if you’re selling a book that was originally $16 dollars, it’s unreasonable to expect to receive more than a couple dollars in exchange. If you sold your books for more than that, all of the books for sale would be more expensive. They also do the work of organizing, stocking, and selling your books, which accounts for some of the cost (unlike a venue such as Ebay, for example, where you’d probably get more money per book but would be responsible for posting the item, selling, and shipping). As for the time it takes to sell, it’s usually 15-45 minutes, but it only takes longer if you’re selling a lot of books or if you go during the busiest days and hours (such as Saturday afternoons).
As for the rest of the store, I find it to be very clean and organized, especially considering that it’s a smaller location and houses a ton of books. I’ve never had a problem with the staff and consider them helpful and nice. Particularly the cashiers, who often ask about the books you’re purchasing and show a genuine interest in them. As for buying, the books are nicely priced, many of them are in “like new” condition, and they have a great selection. They give out good coupons and have some fantastic sales a couple of times a year (typically around Memorial Day and Labor Day). Definitely don’t miss the clearance section, which offers excellent books for $2 apiece. They also sell used CDs, records, DVDs, rare books, and gifts like journals and calendars.
Perhaps Half-Price Books isn’t everyone’s cup of tea. Those who use the store primarily to sell books might be able to find better offers elsewhere. But please don’t listen to all the “This store is terrible, never go there” reviews without giving it a chance yourself. The store has plenty of great attributes, and I know many people who enjoy it. If you have FourSquare, check out the tips on there. Almost all of them are positive.
Do not sell your books to this store – Do not take your books to this store to sell. I brought in a limited edition, autographed, hardcover copy of Under The Dome by Stephen King and was offered $1. I took my book home with me. I refused to give my book away for one dollar. Obviously the workers have not been educated on pricing books. Also, if you do not like the amount of money offered for your books you can take them and leave, you are not required to take their offer. I could not post this comment without clicking on at least one star, though I don't believe it is worth that. Should be possible to rate this as 0 stars.
A tragedy of a shop... – Had a few books to sell and walked up to the counter. Two employess were standing there sorting books. I waited patiently for thirty seconds before clearing me throat and saying "Hi." The young chap with brown hair and yellow eyes just looked up at me and then turned to talk to his female colleague. I was being ignored, a sin in the retail world. I plopped me bag of books on the counter and told both employees I had some books to sell. The girl said, ok she'd look at them and page me when done. She told me about fifteen minutes as I only had seven books. Forty minutes later I was paged and they offered me precisely fifty three cents for each book. The books were history, biographies, autobiographies and bird books all never used. I was appalled. I took me money and left. The shop isn't very clean, (smells of urine and mud), the employees couldn't care a fig about customers and when a customer approaches an employee the employee completely ignores the customer! This little shop would be a smashing success if they'd clean up their dilapidated shelving, sweep and mop the floors and get some employees without yellow coloured contacts who care about customers! The two employees I encountered had attitude unbefitting of any retail business. You should be ashamed and will not receive me business ever again. Too bad you're a chain store here, else you'd actually suffer.
Surprisingly bad experience – I like buying books here, but selling -- not so much. I recently brought in about 100 books -- most new within the last five years. Lots of expensive coffee table books, best selling fiction, cool Scandinavian mysteries. Their offer: less than a dollar a book. I've sold books at other stores, and this was so low I felt cheated. As I was waiting (was told it would be twenty minutes, but an hour later...), I looked at the asking price for some of the same titles I had brought in. Used Henning Mankell paperbacks sold for $7 each, but I got less than a dollar. Pricey books on architecture or art sold for $15 each, but again I got an average of a dollar. So basically they have an average markup of over 1,000 percent, and that is hardly fair.
I think I'll go back to Magers & Quinn.
Selling them books is a ripoff – Half-Price Books may be a fine place to buy books, but it's a total rip-off to sell them books. I took 425 children's books -- the vast majority in EXCELLENT CONDITION -- and, after carting them in and waiting a half an hour, they offered me $15.00 for the lot of them. According to their own estimations, these 90 hardcovers, 30 board books, 55 hardcover specialty books (e.g., with the spider built right in) and 250 paperbacks would go for about $900.00 (avg. $3 for hardcover; avg $5 for specialty; avg $1 for paperbacks). Why would anyone take $15 for this when you can take a $900 deduction (value about $300) on your taxes if you donate them? Mostly because, once you have toted the books in, you don't want to tote them back out, so you decide to take the rip-off offer. I decided not to, it was so maddening. Toted them back out and donated them to a book drive for a worthy cause, and will take my tax deduction. I suggest everyone else do the same until Half-Price Books starts offering a reasonable percentage.
Editorial Review by Citysearch Editors – Bookstore open since 1972 offers new and used books, music, movies, software. Buys used books and more from the public.
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