Terms of Service
Age of Reason
Ancient Near East
Book of Shadows
Piri Re'is Map
Sacred Books of the East
How to Find Books
We get a lot of requests as to how to find books. Since you can't order books from this site directly, this page shares some of our knowledge and some hints about how to find books on the Internet and beyond.Hint number one:
DON'T start at a chain bookstore, or the generic bookstore at the local mall (Crown, Borders, Barnes & Noble, etc.) Here's why.
This will give you an idea of the price range for a specific book, and you can probably find what you're looking for at a reasonable price if it has been in print in the recent past. You can also get an idea of a price range if you are shopping for a used version. Often times used bookstores get lazy and just price the book by its general size, appearance and date of publication; so you might score a $1 book in the bargain bin which is listed at ABEbooks.com or alibris.com for $50. Stranger things have happened!
You can also try these sites, which allow you to comparison shop various book sites for the best price, on both new and used copies:
The complete text of the book you are looking for may be on the Internet, just a few mouse clicks away. If it is, you can find it using one of the following sites:
The Online Books Page. This site, which is constantly updated, is a comprehensive index of etexts which are in the public domain, complete, and freely available.
Project Gutenberg is the original volunteer-based etext project. Thousands of high quality, public domain etexts are available through through this site and its mirror sites.
The University of Virginia Electronic Text Center is a center for academic etext preparation, and has many unique collections.
The Wiretap Electronic Text Archive is one of the oldest etext collections on the Internet.
Google is the best search engine to use if you are looking for etexts, as it indexes every word in every files it scans, not just titles and keywords.
Ask Jeeves is the search engine of choice for non-experts. You can ask it a question in plain English, and it often produces startlingly good results.
If the book can't be found in MELVYL, then the other place I check is the Library of Congress. (catalog.loc.gov). This isn't as feature-rich as MELVYL, but there are often additional editions listed in it that will confirm the existence of a book or earlier editions than MELVYL, so it's worth searching.
Also worth a look is the British Library: this is the online catalog (or catalogue, in 'British') for one of the oldest and richly stocked libraries in the world.
If a book can't be found in the above databases, there is a strong chance that it simply doesn't exist.
Hints: If you live in California, or are visiting, some of the UC libraries (notably UCLA and UC Santa Cruz) have open stacks; this means anyone can walk in off the street and use the library, you don't have to be a student, faculty member or alumni. Even if you don't live in California, searching the UC catalog may turn up valuable bibliographic information about the book. If you are an alumni of the UC, consider joining your Alumni association; it's cheap and you also get a library card.
For fun, look up 'Necronomicon' in MELVYL. You may be surprised at what you find.
You'll have much better luck if you patronize the independent, speciality and used stores. This is because the books at these stores are stocked by people who care about books, not by bean counters from an inventory list which overweights the New York Times bestseller list.
Here in Santa Cruz, the whole town is book-crazy. There are three big bookstores, and a dozen small ones. If you live here, you already know about these stores. If you visit Santa Cruz, we recommend you take a look at these stores. If you love books as much as we do, you may want to move here! Here are four of our favorites, two of which have active websites. All addresses are Santa Cruz, CA 95060
Bookshop Santa Cruz
The Literary Guillotine
Here are some random book links which people have sent me. I haven't used these sites, but they seem appropriate for sacred-texts, so I welcome feedback about these links if anyone actually uses them. I also welcome suggestions for links to add here. Here's how to contact me.