SPOT.ph’s Guide to Online Booksellers in Manila
Staying in forever ktnxbye!
(SPOT.ph) There is only one place we really want to be: behind a book, probably in bed. On good days, we can spend hours and hours in any one of the Top 10 Secondhand Bookstores in Metro Manila. However, sometimes it’s hard to deal with the feeling of walking away from Booksale without anything in hand. There’s also that awkward moment when you’re begging customer service to take your money, just so they would find a way to order that out-of-print book that you’ve been trying to get your hands on for what seems like centuries.
Is there any way to get that literary fix without having to leave the house or paying colossal shipping fees? Yes, dear readers. The answer is yes.
Official website: undertowbooks.weebly.com
Specialization: New and pre-loved contemporary, literary masterpieces, and philosophy books. Their selection often includes rare titles that are more than reasonably priced (Vladimir Nabokov for P250? Oliver Sacks for P225? SOLD!)
Mode of purchase: Paypal, MasterCard, Visa, and Visa Electron. Offline options include BDO deposit, BPI deposit, and Gcash. The website has a handy FAQs page, which includes transaction details and shipping questions.
Specialization: Formerly Indio Bravo, Bookulaw features contemporary classics from Mario Vargas Llosa to Chuck Palahniuk. It’s a bit of a hodgepodge of titles, but you get what you see (they scan the front covers and the condition of the book is described) and the fact that they’re not that known yet means there’s less competition for rarer titles.
Mode of purchase: BPI or Metrobank Deposit. They ship your books via 2Go for P90. Send them a private message for banking details.
Specialization: Bestsellers and random beloved classics. The range is as wide as an actual, physical bookstore with just one shelf-so Dan Brown and Jeanette Winterson are sitting together for no particular reason. The condition of the book is in the description and the photos are uploaded by batches on a specific date and time, so you know when to anticipate the new arrivals. Inquiries are welcome. (They also encourage thinking of books as friends!)
Mode of purchase: BPI bank deposit, LBC Pera Padala, Gcash remittance, and credit card via Paypal. Send them a message for banking details. Additional shipping fees apply (P60 for Metro Manila) and, hurrah, meetups at SM North (Saturdays) or Gateway (weekdays) are also possible.
Specialization: Local titles on art, architecture, and rare Filipiniana books-like The History of the Burgis. They have a physical shop on Pioneer Street, Mandaluyong, but we appreciate the clean, convenient layout of their online store. Artbooks proudly calls itself the only bookstore in Manila that focuses on Philippine art.
Mode of purchase: Major credit cards and Paypal.
Specialization: Hard-to-find and out-of-print books. One of the more recent sales the bookshop made is of a rare antiquarian set of Leo Tolstoy’s works, circa 1902 to 1911. Think of Roel’s Bookshop as Doug Stamper. You call him for a very specific reason and he finds ways to make it happen.
Mode of purchase: Send a private message for banking and shipping details.