Back when I was in campus, buying brand new books was a luxury that I could not afford. My only reprieve was walking in the streets of the city and if I was lucky, I would score one or two good titles. If you have ever done this, you know how rare it can be to get a good book. On those days that I would fail to get a good book, I would pick up any book to sate my urge for a story. One day as I was scrolling through my Instagram feed, I happened upon a page that I wish I knew about back then – Half Priced Books!
Half Priced Books bookshop is a household name well known by Kenyan readers. As the name suggests, this bookshop deals majorly in selling preowned books at half the price of what the book would actually cost were it new. Not only that, they also stock new books that are currently bestsellers in the market at an also affordable price. The average price for most of their books is 500 shillings for the second hand books and around 1,000 to 1,700 shillings for the new ones.
When I tell you that Half Priced Books have got you covered, believe me they do. They have genres ranging from high fantasy to young adult to the even more serious titles under nonfiction. From Nora Roberts, Tom Clancy, Yaa Gyasi to Elon Musk and even Richard Branson, they most likely have your favorite author’s books in stock.
Something that I found exciting at Half Priced Books, other than the books of course, was that they sell very pretty scented candles which retail at 1,500 shillings. I think these candles would make a really awesome gift for a loved one or a friend or even yourself.
I would most definitely recommend Half Priced Books bookshop to anyone who would like to get some good value for their money. My advice would be this: before heading into this bookshop, have a fairly good idea of the type of book you would like to get. As the store is usually busy, the staff might not have time to engage you exhaustively in discussions about different genres and what you may or may not like. You may also fail to get book recommendations as one normally would in other bookshops.
Half Priced Books currently has two physical branches, one located at Bihi Towers on Moi Avenue and the at Westfield Mall in Lavington. The good news is that if you are unable to visit their stores physically, you can make your order online through their Instagram page (@halfpriced_books). Your order will be processed and delivered to you within the shortest time possible – usually within the same day you place your order. With an online audience of over fifteen thousand people, it is fair to say that Half Priced Books is a gem that deserves even more recognition!