Books, Reading, Thrifty Thursday
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Thrifty Thursday #2 // Tales of Natural and Unnatural Catastrophes

Thrifty Thursday is a meme run by Sal over at Motion Sick Lit (an excellent book blog – go check it out here). Thrifty Thursday goes like this:

1. Each week’s link-up will be posted on Thursday.
2. Post or talk about a used book you’ve found (preferably in a book store or thrift shop).
3. The book must cost less than $5.
4. Be sure to return for the link-up! Weird or strange books are preferred.

So basically, find a second-hand book for cheap and talk about it!

TalesofNaturalFor this Thrifty Thursday I’m cheating a little bit and using a book I bought ages ago and have actually already read, Patricia Highsmith’s (i.e. my lady crush) Tales of Natural and Unnatural Catastrophes. I won’t talk about the content of the book too much – but if you want to see what I thought of it, you can read all about it here. You can also check out the book on Goodreads here. Does it meet the Thrifty Thursday requirements?

Under $5? Yes! I paid the bargain price of $2.75. To buy this new at my local bookstore I would have had to pay $11.99, so I’ve save myself $9.24.
Was it weird? Yeah, kinda. Mostly it was about real life stuff, but the very first short story was quite bizarre and involved the tumours of cancer patients still growing after the patient is dead and buried. The tumours basically bloomed up out of the earth like weird mushroom things. These mushroom things are on the inner cover, which is actually really pretty in a creepy kind of way:


As with my first Thrifty Thursday, it’s not so much the stories in the book that I’m concerned about, but rather it’s the story of the book, and I’ll be making it my goal for all Thrifty Thursdays to find a book that has something interesting from the previous owner in it (aside from food, bodily fluids, etc.).


Inside this book, I found a cool little ‘ex libris’ type stamp. If you don’t know what ‘ex libris’ is, it’s basically the latin term for ‘bookplate’ (scholars – please correct me if that’s wrong), or “from the library of”. This is usually a decorative piece of paper that gets stuck on the inside cover of your book to show that it’s all yours – from your library. They’re not used so much these days, but were used all the time in the past.

This book doesn’t have a traditional bookplate inside. Instead, it has a personalised stamp on the title page that reads,

Some Kind of Library
Robyn & Gregory

This little stamp makes me like Robyn and Gregory. I feel like they have sass. If we ever met, we might even be friends. And we actually have something in common, because I have a personalised stamp as well! Mine not be as sassy as Robyn and Gregory’s, but it has other qualities.

BookStampMine has the date that I added it to my ‘library’, as well as my name. The reason I did this is so that one day when I’ve left the land of the living and my books end up the hands of another reader, they’ll see my name, and be able to google me (or use whatever futuristic method of searching is in at the time).

In this digital age, when we leave so much of ourselves online, the next reader of that book might be able to find out about the previous owner of their new book – me! Who was I? What else did I read? Did we have anything in common? I ask all these questions now about Robyn and Gregory, but I’ll never be able to find those answers.

I like the idea of being connected over time through books, so I am leaving a little piece of my own bookish history in hopes readers after me won’t spend as much time as me wondering about a book’s previous owner (maybe they’ll even read this blog post one day – hello, Future Reader, if you are reading this).

Do you have a personalised book stamp (or something else)? Or does inking books in any way go against every fibre of your being?



  1. Pingback: Thrifty Thursday #3 // A Fortunate Life | Bits & Books

  2. Deepika Ramesh says

    I am head over heels in love with your stamp. I wrote to one of the popular artists last week, asking her to create a stamp for me. I am looking forward to receiving mine. Your stamp is SO SO lovely. 🙂


  3. I adore that book stamp. I’ve never even thought to get something like that for myself! Where did you have it made?

    Also, tumor mushrooms sound totally up my alley (a sentence I never thought I’d type).


    • I think I like her stabby sociopath stuff better, however this is only based on two books so it’s not a well developed opinion!


  4. Sounds like a very weird read! An excellent Thrifty Thursday choice!

    The interesting thing is that this book isn’t very old…about 2005, according to GoodReads. Robyn and Gregory is such a specific thing in the sense that they’re a couple. I’m sure if you poked around with the town that you bought it in mind, you might be able to answer some of your questions. Granted, that takes away a little of the mystery.

    This reminds me that I have a REALLY old book that belonged to my friend’s great-grandmother or something like that. It wasn’t an exciting book–something about grammar (exciting to me) or penmanship, but I kept it because it was nearly 100 years old with all kinds of marginalia.

    I actually have another idea that I think might be fun, but I’ll get more into that towards the end of March.

    Thanks for participating, and thanks for the awesome post, as always. It’s really cool to see this meme become a pretty customizable one in presentation. It makes it a lot of fun.


    • I think that 2005 one on Goodreads is new edition – the one I have is from 1988. But people never really leave the area I live in, so I might be able to find something about them, but I do like the mystery! (A little bit anyway.) It would be amazing to find something around the 100 year old mark – can you imagine how many people might have read that book?
      I’m excited for my next trip to the second hand store to see what else I can dig up – I might try and get something for Julianne’s Weirdathon.
      I look forward to seeing your next idea!


  5. Yes, I do have my own book stamp! I’m not at all surprised that you have one, too. I wonder if that’s part of why we both get so excited about them in bookstores. How fun to find a book at a bookstore with one in it, too!


    • Actually, that makes a lot of sense. I don’t know why I’d never made that connection! Do you stamp all of your books, or just the ones you know you’ll keep forever and ever? I usually read the book first and then if I know I’ll keep it I’ll stamp it. If it’s one I’ll take to the book exchange, I don’t stamp it as I worry I’ll get less for trading it in.


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