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Stella & Rose's Books

Specialists in Rare & collectable books

Do you buy books?

The hesitation at the door, the hopeful smile, and then the inevitable question: "Do you buy books?"

Oh... if only I was witty and quick.... the answers I could give! "No, we prefer to steal them - although it's increasingly frowned on". "No, we write them". "No, they are all from the library down the road..."
Oh, if only we could sometimes be like the Black Books television series!!

We are a secondhand book business. We need stock. So, of course we buy books! Secondhand bookshops come in a whole variety of shapes and sizes but all need stock if they are to survive and therefore I believe that they do all buy books! Someone please correct me if I'm wrong!

However, we don't buy all the books we are offered...

We particularly like to buy books within our specialist areas as listed on our website:

We are also interested in single items of collectable books on most subjects.

I will admit to being a little on the fussy side. We do like our stock to be in very nice condition (clean and free of tobacco or other musty smells), preferably first editions and with dustwrappers where applicable (but not necessarily for all items). I recently had an experience when I asked someone to send digital photos of their books which they thought were in nice condition. Imagine my dismay when I opened the images.... they were all falling apart and held together with sellotape! Most weren't even that old. I suppose it was nice that the books had obviously been well loved. But sorry, they just weren't for us. It goes to show.... our version of poor is someone else's version of very good. Everyone has their own expectations and this is why we will never be able to please everyone when describing our stock.

We understand you may love your book(s), but please don't be offended if we don't make you an offer...

Anyway, if you are thinking of downsizing and have any nice collections of books in the above subjects, or single collectable items then please do get in touch, we'd love to hear from you. We can only say 'no thanks' at worst, but at best we will be able to come to mutual agreement for your prized books. If you have a large collection and you have whetted our appetite then we may well travel to see you and your books!

We do like to see a list and some digital photos beforehand if possible as this helps us decide if we'd be interested or not. A pet hate of ours is when people turn up in their car outside the shop without an appointment and ask to see the buyer. The buyer is a busy person and not always available on demand. If you are planning a trip to see the buyer please do make an appointment.

WE PREFER TO BUY FROM WITHIN THE UK but will consider exceptional items/collections from abroad.

Above: books waiting to be assessed before offers, and (right) newly catalogued books waiting to go into our shops.

Please note, we do not offer a general valuation service. Also, there is a difference between a books 'value' and the price we would offer. Our offer prices are generally between 40% and 50% of our shelf price. If you are looking at prices online, you will see that there can be some huge variations - some prices are more realistic than others! Just because a book is listed at a price, it doesn't mean it will sell.

For more information regarding selling your books please see our “books for sale” page on our website:

Contributed by Maria

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