Books on Pews for a Good Cause

Amnesty International Book Sale at the Church of Ascension, London

This past weekend I took a lovely stroll down Dartmouth Row in Blackheath to the Amnesty International UK Booksale.  Having read online that there would be over 20,000 books on sale, I had to see for myself.

Did I mention the almost unbearable heat that I battled to get there?  The dear lady glowed all afternoon...hand me a fan and draw the curtains.

There were books on pews, tables, in boxes and scattered in places on the floor.  Although I expected find a number of previously loved titles, I was struck at how many recent publications I found.  Imagine my excitement when I discovered a copy of The White Woman on the Green Bicycle by Monica Roffey, whose opening sentence of chapter one is currently one of my favourite lines. I snaffled it up for £3....yes I love book sales!

Spotted, a gem amongst the 20,000 titles

Last year the Blackheath and Greenwich chapter of Amnesty International raised £11,700 and fingers crossed they are hoping to better that figure this year.  All books, I was told were donated from members of the public including publishers and book reviewers.  The dear lady on the desk chuckled when I asked if there were indeed 20,000 books in the church at that very moment.

A variety of Vamp Literature on sale

Don't you love reading the handwritten messages inside donated books?  I do - its one my favourite things to do in dusty bookstores and sales. I opened one particular vampire book which had a 2009 Christmas message scrawled....mmm clearly untouched.  I wonder what Geraldine would have made of Katie passing it over so soon, perhaps they were no longer besties.

How about you...once you've finished reading the latest bestseller - do you keep it?  Or do you pass it onto family and friends or charity?

Photos courtesy yours truly.

I'm generally a horder of books but I think there may be a cull coming up soon.

AI UK Greenwich and Blackheath will hold their next big booksale on 20th November.  If you are interested in browsing, buying or donating, please check their website for details.


  1. What an amazing book sale! I would have gone nutzo! I'm super jealous... hehe!

  2. I would LOVE to go!!! All those books! (drooooooooling)

  3. Hi Jen, it was great - I love book sales on this scale!! LOL and I did go a little nutzo! I ended up with a bag of books. ;)

  4. Hi Vicki!! There was drool in buckets...if only I had a wheelbarrow to cart more books home! ;)

  5. I'm a hopeless book horder. This sale looked great!

  6. Hi Lynn, Oh I completely horde books, clothes, everything. I will try and give a few up every now and then. Thanks for visiting and following, welcome to my blog!

  7. What a beautiful book sale! I'm practically drooling as I see a few titles in the stacks!

    As for me, I tend to hang onto my books, even the disappointing ones, I have no idea why, but I guess that makes me a horder! Atleast I'm in good company!

  8. Hi Kristi,

    I'm thinking of having a Team Horder tee-shirt made up! There's a quite a few of us, especially where books are concerned.

    Thanks for following back and welcome! ;)

  9. Hi Talei, I am definitely a hoarder! And I have bought some utter trash in my time.....but I just cannot bear to throw away a book!
    I love books, I love the smell of new books, I love the feel of old books, and I puzzle over thoughts lovingly scribbled inside.....although I would never do such a thing!
    I LOVE book sales of any kind, and even our Library has a clear out twice a year.
    Oh, you lucky person!
    I have to admit that I had to have a closer book at that "New Moan" in the "Twlshite Saga"! I would have bought that.
    Are you mad woman.....the weather is far too hot to do anything but laze around and, a book!

  10. Hi Alice,

    Welcome to Team Horder's book blog! I always find it hard to sort out books to give away. Usually I start with good intentions but the pile that stays is always bigger!

    I was very tempted to get the 'New Moan, Twishite Saga by Stephfordy Mayo...alas,I just couldn't do it. LOL.

    It was really hot, we went for a lovely cool Pimms post book sale!

    Your library clear out sounds like a great event! Thanks so much for following and visiting!

  11. I keep the ones I want to read again and give away bagfuls to the thrift stores. My husband and I used to go to the Friends of the Library books sales in Carlsbad, CA.

    You pay $10.00 for a bag and fill it with whatever you was awesome!

    Sounds like made some great purchases.

  12. Great post. I recently went to the annual Lifeline Bookfest here in Brisbane where they open up 2 huge halls in the Exhibition Centre. There are gazillions of books - some start at AU$2.00 or less. It goes for 3 days and rakes in thousands of $$$ for charity.

    Needless to say I went 2 days and kept lugging home bags of wonderful books..:)

    And yes, I love the inscriptions too...

  13. Boy oh boy do I love books. And books at a bargain just make me feel like I'm flying over the moon. I don't have time to read all the books I buy, but you never know when I'll be in the mood for a book in the middle of the night and there they'll be, sitting on my own shelf to browse.

    What a great way to spend some time off.


  14. Hi Raquel, welcome ;)

    $10.00 a bag! I would be there all day!! My kind of sale!

  15. Bonjour Aussie!

    The inscriptions fascinate me. ;)

    And WOW, the Lifeline event sounds incredible, two halls over several days. I have to admit,nothing makes me smile more than getting involved with charity events which tie into writing or arts!

  16. Hi Donna,

    I've got 3 books on my bedside table right now and countless scattered about the place. Constantly reaching for one, and I will read them all honest!! :)

  17. What a wonderful idea to raise money for such a worthwhile cause. And you obviously got some great books & great bargains! :)

  18. Hi Lisa!

    It is a great cause and I did fill my bag with some lovely books!! Just was well I only took one bag... ;)


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