Thursday, February 8, 2018

Discussion: A Brief List Of Oddities Discovered Inside Used Books



If you get most of your books from libraries or used bookstores, you’ve probably experienced the joy (misfortune?) of discovering objects that previous readers have left inside the books. I thought I’d do a countdown of the oddest things I’ve found between the pages of used books.




A Brief List Of Oddities Discovered Inside Used Books












8. Candy wrappers. Books and candy just seem to go together, right? I’ve found quite a few candy wrappers inside books. I’m still eagerly awaiting the day I find candy that hasn’t already been eaten. That’ll be the best day ever.
















7. Nature. Remember when you were a kid and would put flowers between the pages of books to press them flat? Protip: If you’re using a library book to flatten nature, remember to remove your nature before returning the book.











6. A receipt from 1987. I’m guessing that this book hadn’t been read in a while? It was a receipt from an auto parts store.










5. Desiccated bug corpses. I’ve found a flat-fly and a flat-spider. Yes, I did scream and throw the books across the room. I guess dead bugs are better than live ones, right?
















4. A Get Well Soon card. The card said something like, I hope this book makes your hospital stay easier. Um . . . What? Why do I own this book now?! What happened to the previous owner? I really hope the hospital person didn’t die while reading the book.















3. Playing cards. Is anybody missing about 1/3 of a deck of playing cards? I’m guessing that the previous reader was using cards to mark certain pages. While I was reading, cards kept falling out of the book. It was like a wildly unimpressive magic trick.











2. Pirate homework. This one technically wasn’t in the book. It was written in the margins. The kid who owned my copy of Treasure Island before me must have read it for school. She wrote essay questions on the title page, and she annotated the first few chapters. Then she just started drawing pirates in the margins. She must have gotten as bored with the story as I did.






1. Tom Cruise. Well, I didn’t find him, exactly. I found an artsy black-and-white picture of him. He was really young in the photo. It must have been taken before he joined a cult, got weird, and bounced on Oprah’s couch. I don’t know who owned this book before I did, so if any of my blog readers have misplaced Tom Cruise, I have him here. Somewhere. He’s probably lurking inside a book.







Have you found anything odd inside a book?









41 comments:

  1. hahaha you poor thing!! I haven't found anything like that YET but I did find a whole buch of Book Darts once I mean every other page had a dart on it. I had no idea what they were at the time them Modern mrs darcy talked about them and was like ohhhh THAT WHAT I HAVE and thus began my book dart obsession.

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  2. Oh, yuck! I hope I never find a bug corpse in a book! The only things I usually find are other people's checkout slips. The Get Well Soon card is interesting, though!

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  3. Ha that is some funyn stuff you found minus the big corpse. I would freak out!!!

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  4. LOL well I often reach for whatever is handy to use as a bookmark, so mine are probably full of receipts, playing cards, candy wrappers, and other oddities. I can't say I've ever found pressed flowers in a book! And thankfully I can't recall any flat bugs. The oddest thing I've ever found was a little pamphlet from the Jehovah's Witnesses inside a book asking if I've found Jesus.

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  5. *shudders* I think I found a few but corpses... And candy wrappers. Sometimes there were even candy without a wrapper! I think it dropped from their mouth or something...

    I think this might be why I've resorted to Overdrive. 🤷

    Sophia @ Bookwyrming Thoughts

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  6. An old grocery store receipt, like 20 years or so.
    An airplane boarding pass.
    Meh.

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  7. Ha! That’s quite the eclectic assortment you have there. I think the Tom Cruise pic would be way more terrifying than the flat spider. It would certainly make me throw the book across the room in horror.

    Tanya @ Girl Plus Books

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  8. Haha this just made my day like 1000x better! I've actually had the playing card experience too. I got a book from the library and out fell three playing cards (I still have all of them, actually, and they make good bookmarks!). It must be some kind of giant conspiracy.

    I don't think I could have read the book after finding a flat spider in it... something like terror by association.

    Laura @BlueEyeBooks

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  9. Love the idea for this post! Not sure I'd want to eat candy I found in a used book though lol. But pressed flowers seem like a nice surprise! 1987 wow. Maybe everyone borrowing or reading the book has just kept it in there as a bookmark? I'm cracking up about the magic trick lol. I think drawings of pirates in the margins would be a great addition to a book though, haha.

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  10. I found a handwritten love letter in a used book once! It was quite old, but there was no envelope or address, which was a shame. I would have enjoyed trying to find the previous owner and returning it to them.

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  11. Excellent idea for a fun post. I've found bookmarks, receipts, what must have been liquid damage from cat pee (reported this one to the librarian and stopped reading, not in this order), and shopping and to-do lists.

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  12. Haha, man, I've found some weird things in used, but I've never found bug corpses! Yuck. I would definitely wonder about the 'get well soon' book also! I found a reproduced autographed portrait and George and Barbara bush in a book about medieval knights, so that was easily one of my weirder ones. I also found some photo-booth style photos in one once and I wished I could have returned them! Great post, I really enjoyed reading through the weird things you've found. :)

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  13. Wow! Tom Cruise? That's awesome. I don't read a ton of physical books, but a long, long time ago, I used to borrow a lot of books from the library, and I remember new articles, a string bracelet, and a ticket stub.

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  14. A friend of mine once found money tucked in a book.

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  15. This is hilarious! I once found a really weird note and another time I found a business card, but that's about as interesting as it gets. The Tom Cruise photo is definitely the height of weird. :/

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  16. Oh my gosh bugs. You know I love my library as much as the next person lol, but at least if I buy new I don't have to worry about what might be lurking in the pages. :) Theoretically at least. Unfortunately I've never found anything this interesting, although I have found lots of... food remnants that makes me wonder just what the book has been through.

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  17. This is HILARIOUS. I mean... 1987!? I like to think that every person who obtained the book since then has seen the receipt and put it back for the next person. Bugs are always my fear. I legit inspected a library book (the ONLY library book I have taken out as an adult, just a few weeks ago) for bed bugs because I was freaked out. I want to know the story behind Tom Cruise too bwhaha.

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  18. I did find a flattened spider once and yes I screamed and freaked out even when I finally realised that it was dead. I was on edge the rest of the day!

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  19. Oh wow you've found a lot of interesting things! I can't say I've found much inside of any of the books I've borrowed other than pages and words! Although I did once find a used bubblegum stuck on the indide cover of a school copy of Wuthering Heights? It might have been another book so I'm not totally sure. I'd much prefer candy wrappers.

    I occasionally find the odd tiny leaf in a library book, but it doesn't normally seem intetional. Maybe someone was just reading outside. But a bug corpse would totally make me scream. I don't care if the spider is dead, I'm not having that thing anwhere near me. I'm sorry you had that traumatic experience! The reciept and the get well soon card are particularly interesting/creepy. It's so weird to think of a book being through so many different times and places and how they've lived so many lives.

    Wonderful post! So interesting and unique :D

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  20. I've never found anything this interesting in any books. But a receipt from 1987? I'm interested in seeing what was bought, and for how much!?

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  21. I've found drawing and annotations in books that I loved. I think of it as an added bonus and enjoy looking at how others thought of the book.
    Tori @ In Tori Lex

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  22. Haha, wow that is quite a collection of things you've found. I've only ever found old receipts or bookmarks.
    This was a fun blog post to read, thank you for sharing.

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  23. I really enjoyed your post, AJ. Yes, I've found stuff left inside of books. It's always disconcerting to find someones notes or cards. And I always wonder what I've left inside books!

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  24. Oh my gosh, that's such a good post idea :D the one about Tom Cruise was pretty hilarious xD I have once almost lost one of my favorite bookmarks in a library book, but thankfully, a nice librarian worked there that day, I returned and she helped me look through the copies of the same book I had returned and we found it :)
    I think I have also found one or two weird things in used books before, but now I just can't recall what it was.

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  25. These are hilarious, I haven't found anything like that before!

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  26. Fun post. An old receipt is the only thing I've found so far.

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  27. I'm guilty of the Candy Wrappers! I also used to find a lot of airline tickets back in the day (maybe because our bookstore in our airport bought used books?) Also... super impressed that the 1987 receipt was still legible

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  28. I love this post! This actually JUST happened to me. I was reading a used book I'd bought and a VERY risqué picture fell out of the back. I was so confused at first, but then I made a game out of it. I hid the picture in my husband's sock drawer, because I wanted to see what he said about, and he flips out. So, for the rest of the week, I keep placing that picture in different places around the house until he eventually throws is away. He said it felt like he was being haunted. I left it in the refrigerator, the dash of his car, his shoe... hahaha. So fun!

    Do You Dog-ear?

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  29. What a great post, you have found some interesting things. Desiccated bug corpses??!! Ack!!
    I know I've found a grocery list before but aside from that not too much except writing on the sidelines and I found a happy birthday inscription in one of the books I borrowed.

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  30. hahaha love this post! I thought I had seen ALL the odd things especially bugs and candy wrappers, but... a Get Well card?? NOPE! I hate finding Desiccated bug corpses! ewwww LOL

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  31. I haven't found anything nearly this exciting in any of the books I have borrowed from the library or bought used, I'm afraid. I have used some of these items as bookmarks myself though. But not a dead bug. Never a dead bug.

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  32. OMG! This cracked me up, Aj!!!! 😂 I use receipts as a bookmark so I probably left a few on them! LOL

    I don't borrow physical books from the library so I haven't really found a lot of things.. LOL and I am lucky enough not to find anything in used books!

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  33. Very fun. I am now surprised I don't remember more objects found in books, because I have read a lot of library books in my time. I have ended up with some photos in my classroom library books, which I always try to return, but it seems like they're always baby pictures, so I don't know who they belong to. I also enjoyed your wry "wildly unimpressive magic trick" line.

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  34. I think the most random thing I discovered was a photo tucked halfway through Fight Club - of a bloke lounging on a sofa, flipping the photographer the bird. I mean, it seems _appropriate_ for Fight Club, right? And made me burst out laughing out loud on an aeroplane, much to the discomfort of the person sat next to me.

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  35. These are absolutely hilarious! Minus the bug corpses, because eww :) The weirdest things I put in my books are receipts though.

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  36. I bought a used book once with a pass to the dining hall of a cruise ship inside! (It also had sand in it... I'm thinking there was a holiday involved!)

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  37. Hilarious! The desiccated bug corpses...the worst! Right up there next to Tom Cruise...LOL.

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  38. Wow, you've found some odd things inside books!! I can't remember the weridest thing I've ever found inside a book, but I have found family photos, and a $2 bill and bookmarks. Nothing too exciting.

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  39. Hahha, this one cracked me up! I check out a lot of my books from the library but haven't found anything in it ever. I feel super left out right now, haha :D But the library I issue the books from has this strict librarian and she turns the books over and fluffs it out (right in front of us) when we return them to see if we might have left something behind. So I guess I should be changing my library because this finding-weird-things-between-the-pages sounds really cool! :D

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  40. This is hysterical! I don't think I've ever found anything all that interesting in a book. I have found pressed flowers, I think, though.

    Nicole @ Feed Your Fiction Addiction

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  41. I've found receipts, pressed leaves and photographs too. I would like some people to stop putting gum in their books. Are you trying to make it unreadable? I've also found beautiful bookmarks left behind.

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