In Which I Gain A Spine…Then Rant About It Being Broken

Note: While I could provide pictures, I’m not going to, because my object is not to shame anyone: this is an ongoing problem I have with buying used books online.

Dear Bookseller,

I just received my package from you, and I must admit I’m very concerned for your welfare. This book’s condition was listed as “Very Good.” There may even have been some talk about “minor edge wear.” These words, combined with the condition of the book on its arrival, suggest several possibilities:

  1. You have recently been through some sort of apocalypse which affects your judgement of such things—maybe the condition of this book, as opposed to the garden ruined by that rain of toads, is indeed “Very Good.”
  2. The fancy super-sealed packaging emitted fumes, causing you to hallucinate that this was not, in fact, a creased and spine-cracked travesty of a paperback.
  3. You are totally, totally evil.

I’m not averse to a little work on these things, really: I know I’m demanding. My paperbacks are going to be clear-Contact-papered, after all, and sometimes buying a used book means that I take a Sharpie or some paint and touch up little spots here and there before I preserve it.

I preserve it because, in my cockeyed optimism, I assume it will be good.

You sent me this copy of this novel because you, in your cockeyed optimism, assumed that I was either apathetic, mentally blunted, or visually impaired. I’m no more whipping out a Sharpie for this than I am performing CPR on the mummy of Ramses II, and for exactly the same reason.

…I didn’t punt it off my balcony in a rage, either, though, so there is that.

Am I going to mention some of this in my review? Let’s just say the chances are “Very Good.”


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