Itinerary: OCAC, 掛包, Mollie, Shaved Ice & Papaya Milk, Ya Book, Mollie, Shida Night Market 師大夜市 dinner
My original plan was to homeschool and then go to a used bookstore once a week. But alas, the books keep calling and calling out to me and I could not focus. So yesterday, when Mama Fleur offered to watch the Fleur’s kids, I took the opportunity to go book shopping with her and my kids. I could have left the kids with her, but another long story on our downstairs neighbors and why I decided to just take the kids out.
With kids along, our plan was to alternate between shopping for books and eating. We left at 9:30am and didn’t get home till 8:30pm. I brought along snacks and our iPad and Kindle to entertain the children. I was surprised at how well they behaved most of the day since those managed to entertain the kids till Ya Books only. Plus there was all that walking (13k steps!), in rainboots. Poor Astroboy.
But other than complaining about sore feet, they were generally fine with just looking at books at the bookstore. Made me so so happy.
So anyways, we first went to OCAC, where with your one passport you can get 10 books. I only grabbed the AP Chinese prep book #1. I’d already grabbed all the textbooks, which I’ve never used, 3 years ago.
By then it was 11 and my tummy was growling. So it was onward to the best 掛包 place, ever, according to my friend. 藍家掛包. It’s a 1-2 little ally blocks from Mollie’s. We picked 3: the lean pork, mostly lean, and half lean. It was pretty good. Couldn’t tell you if it’s the best unless I had other ones!
Mollie’s 茉莉 is right in the ally next to exit #4 of the Gongguan 公館 MRT stop. I already went there 2 days ago and yet somehow I managed to find a few more books. Because it’s the first bookstore we went to, we spent a lot of time looking at the books one by one.
By the time we were done, my brain was spinning. So we went to a shaved ice place for something to eat. Yum, peanut, red bean, and aiyu shaved ice.
Next, in the ally right next to the shaved ice store is 雅博客 Yabook, where we spent another hour or two and I somehow convinced Fleur to buy the Deer Bridge Publishing set that I wish I could buy, but alas my kids outgrew. It’s a preschooler bilingual book set called 真善美 about the seasons, and time, and whatever non-fiction info that kids generally are taught in preschool. It’s written by Maria Ruis, and you can find English versions on Amazon. (sample pages here)
We then walked to 台電大樓 Taipower Building MRT stop to say goodbye to our friend, then walk again toward the other Mollie. It was an eventful walk, because by now Astroboy was TIRED. We made a pit stop, a bakery stop, and 2 bubble tea stops. By now we were all hungry and tired so we didn’t stay that long at this Mollie, though we still managed to buy 2 boxes of books.
With the call of food, Astroboy was much better about walking back. 師大夜市 is on the way to Mollie’s, so we made a quick stop to have some oyster pancakes, bought some pastry, then back home we went.
All in all a tiring but fruitful day.
How are the bookstores?
Mollie tends to price more recently published books higher than Yabook. Yabook prices their older books at higher price. Every bookstore has a $40 book special price section where it’s 4 books for the price of $100. We keep finding many books from the 智茂圖書 紐伯瑞兒童成長文學精選 Newberry Medal Literature set.
For the newer, more in demand books, Mollie sells them at around 60% of list price, which is good, but not great. It’s when I find things like the Mike Venezia set on artists that I’ve been eyeing for 5 years at 4 books for $100 that I feel like I got a great find.
Yabook has a much smaller collection, but more varied. I found the artist set there, and the Deer Publishing books. Often there is only 1-2 out of a set, whereas Mollie has more. Every bookstore has tons of non-fiction comic books, 漢聲中國童話, Newberry medal set.
You can get really addicted trying to find treasures in bookstores. The only reason why I’m not buying used books online is because I’m allergic to dust mites and I wanted to flip through most of the books to make sure I’m not getting super itchy or sneezing non-stop. Most of the used books we see have mildew marks on the jacket inner page. If they’re at very good condition they’re shrink wrapped.
Last, at both bookstores, after the first $500 spent, you can get membership, and then all books are at 85% of sticker price. At 師大 Mollie, we could get the books at 80% of sticker price if we purchased over $5000. Easy to do if you go with a friend!
At Yabook, you get free delivery after spending $1000, whereas Mollie you have to pay $70 per A4 box. Either way, pretty cheap for next day or second day delivery!
- 藍家掛包 台北市中正區羅斯福路3段316巷8弄3號
- 茉莉二手書 台大 Mollie Used Bookstore – 台北市中正區羅斯福路四段40巷2號一樓
- 台一牛奶大王 － 台北市 大安區 新生南路三段82號
- 雅博客 Yabooks －台北市大安區新生南路三段76巷9號1樓
- 茉莉二手書 師大 Mollie Used Bookstore – 台北市和平東路一段222號B1