How to Find That Book You've Spent Years Looking For

Between libraries, the web, and rare book stores, near-forgotten books are easier than ever to find.

| November-December 2003

  • Photo by Fotolia/Pink Badger

Searching for a book you remember reading as a child, college student, or happy dropout, but haven't seen anywhere since? On the Web, there are now numerous ways to expand your hunt beyond Amazon. Abebooks is a consortium that connects you to thousands of used-book stores around the world. Another search site is the Berkeley-based You can also search a growing number of individual stores online, including the Portland-based Powells and Bolerium Books in San Francisco, which specializes in rare books on labor issues and radical history.

Utne Reader Bookshelf

Meanwhile, your local library can be a great help, too, thanks to a practice called interlibrary loan. Libraries across the country will lend you books and other materials, creating a vast collection that's easy for you to access. Here's how: If you don't find what you're looking for in your library's catalog, ask a librarian to locate it elsewhere in the huge national loan network. Tell the pros as much about the book as you can. Title and author are most important, but publisher and publication date (or even a good guess at it) can be helpful too. They'll do the rest.

7/1/2020 1:42:10 AM

Trying to find a young adult fiction book about a boy who learns he is cursed. He just transfers to a new school where another student, a girl helps him to overcome the curse by traveling back in time to where his family was cursed in the first place. They use the connection to a old tree in the forest and amber to time travel. The curse is lifted after the boy kills the wizard using his own powers that he has denied the entire time.

7/1/2020 1:10:44 AM

i read this book a few years ago and i have a vague memory of it but it was really good and i cant find it. i don’t remember anyone’s names, but basically it was this family who moved around the usa with different identities and like robbed people blind. and the main character who is a teenage girl is basically assigned to learn about the family and house that they are planning to rob by getting close with the son that is her age. they almost get caught but end up robbing the house and get away. i don’t remember if this happened or i might have made it up in my head but if i recall correctly the girl ends up getting away from her family. i know this is very vague and difficult to find but can someone help me.

6/30/2020 10:22:52 PM

I’m trying to find a book about a young woman who happens to be a little overweight and is ashamed of her body, she mistakenly takes a belly dancing class and becomes more confident and along the way she meets a man