I’ve lamented the wastefulness of London’s free papers on this blog before, so I was pleased to hear about ‘Choose What You Read‘. This ingenious little campaign puts tables out in stations and invites people to take a secondhand book.
“Choose what you read is our own reaction to the tonnes of free newspapers dished out and thrown away every day” says the website. “We’d like to give you the opportunity to read a book instead, donated by the public to go back out into the public once finished.”
The ‘librarians’ currently hold bookswaps once a month in five different stations in London, and books can be borrowed and returned then or in book boxes at the Curzon cinema in Soho. It’s a new idea, and one that I hope gets rolled out on a much larger scale.
- I’m still getting my secondhand books from Bookmooch, I might add. They’ve grown so fast they need a new server, if you’d like to donate towards that.
- I’ve also discovered GreenMetropolis, an online second hand bookstore. All books cost £3.75, so if I can’t get what I want for free on Bookmooch, that’ll do just fine. You can also sell your own books, and get £3.00 out of every sale.
- I still have to buy a lot of things new, and I resist Amazon as often as possible. Every consumer choice you make is a vote for the kind of world you want to live in, as someone once said. I want to live in a world with bookshops. If you do too, go the extra mile and support your local bookshop. If you can’t find what you need in store, almost all of them will order it in for you.