…they just mate at night while you’re not looking, which is why there is never any space on the bookshelves.
The New York Times reports on the used books market:
“Consider a recent paper, “Internet Exchanges for Used Books,” by Anindya Ghose of New York University and Michael D. Smith and Rahul Telang of Carnegie-Mellon. (The text of the paper is available at ssrn.com/abstract=584401.)
The starting point for their analysis is the double-edged impact of a used book market on the market for new books. When used books are substituted for new ones, the seller faces competition from the secondhand market, reducing the price it can set for new books. But there’s another effect: the presence of a market for used books makes consumers more willing to buy new books, because they can easily dispose of them later.
Ha. I’ve been conning myself and my long-suffering partner for years into believing that it’s okay to buy more books (and MORE books, and STILL MORE books) because of course we can always sell the ones we don’t read any more to the chaps at the back of South Extension. Except that “the ones we don’t read any more” is a category that doesn’t exist. Instead, we build more bookshelves. And move house a lot.