Selling Your Books

As a used & rare bookseller, Motte & Bailey buys books from a number of sources, including organizations, estates, library sales, and individuals.

What We Buy

If you have books to sell, we suggest you look at the list at the end to see what books we like to buy. We are a smaller shop with an emphasis on condition and quality, so we often look for special collections of books or books on narrow subjects. The more general the book, the less we are likely to be interested in it.

Also, we sometimes buy unusual non-book things. That list is below as well.

We are happy to have you come by, or to go out to see you at your location if you have many books.

First Time sellers
If you have not sold books to us before, you might find it helpful to bring in no more than 3 boxes to see how we operate, and, if you you are pleased with the result, move forward with the rest of your books. You do not need an appointment to come by. However, The *worst* times to come by (because of parking, local activities, and the shop being busy) are Wednesday mornings and any Saturdays. We are closed on Sundays.

Our Offers
We generally pay $1 -2 dollars for books we will sell for $10 or less, and a third (approx 33%) for books we will sell for $15 or higher. If a book is more exceptional and above $250.00, we pay up to one half of our retail price. Again, we are smaller shop, and only rarely buy outside our areas, listed below.

For better books, our offers are higher than most online consignment shops and you do not have to wait for the book to sell. We pay you when we make an offer on your books, unless special arrangements are made.

Below are our some subjects we need more of currently :

  • Ancient History & Philosophy
  • Animals/Zoology
  • Autos/Aviation/Motorcycles/Trains
  • Bookplates & Books about Bookplates
  • Chess Books
  • Children's Picture Books (in dust jacket)
  • Classic Literature, esp. 20th century classics.
  • Exploration - New World, Pacific, Old West etc.
  • Graphic design, Illustration, & Posters
  • History of Science & Medicine
  • Medieval History
  • Mythology & Folklore
  • Occult/Ghost stories and tales
  • Sci Fi & Fantasy (classic, uncommon, award winners)

Other less urgent subject needs are :

  • Architecture
  • Art books - narrow topic or scholarly
  • Asian History (scholarly preferred)
  • Books About Books
  • Culinary History
  • European History (scholarly preferred)
  • Film & Movie (unusual or scholarly preferred)
  • Gardening & Botany
  • Military History, esp. Unit histories
  • Music History (unusual or scholarly preferred)
  • Poetry - classics & award winners preferred
  • Photography  (unusual or narrowly focused preferred)
  • Pre-Columbian Era (Maya, Aztec, Inca)

What We Don't Buy
Moldy or damaged books, incomplete sets, magazines, newer books missing their dust jackets, ex-library books, Readers Digest books, Time Life books, American Heritage, Diet & self Help books, inspirational books, romances.

Unusual Non-Book Things We Buy

  • Canvas book bags
  • Bookmarks (we usually just take them as a donation to save them from the trash, but will pay for unusual ones)
  • Board games - Catan or similar Euro Games, Fantasy games, War games
  • Posters - events, advertising, Mondo, theater, unsual
  • Older attractive beer and wine coasters
  • Unusual small bookshelves or bookcases
  • Prints - natural history, sci fi/fantasy, military, automobiles, trains, alcohol