Explore the 757: The Wards Corner Book Exchange

Local bookworms might know the best-kept literary secret in Norfolk is the Book Exchange at Wards Corner. It’s been a winner in the bookstore, “New or Used,” category in “The Best of Hampton Roads,” contest for 10 years.

For any avid reader, it’s easy to accumulate books. What do you do with them after they’ve been read? Do they sit on a bookshelf somewhere while you admire them as they gather dust? The Book Exchange makes it easy to deal with your ever-growing collection of books by allowing you to trade them in for store credit.

When items come in to be traded, the store’s staff gives trade credit for the items they accept, which includes books, DVDs, Blu-Rays, CDs, vinyl records, music cassette tapes, and audiobooks. What the store takes depends on condition, popularity and what they have in stock. Trades can be brought in at any time, and there are no hidden fees. You can use your credit at The Book Exchange or The Movie & Music Exchange for any books, movies and music, in either store, at any time.

They get new stock in every day. The books are arranged into more than 400 categories, including general fiction, mystery, history, Christianity, sci-fi/fantasy, romance, classics, kids, and more.

The Book Exchange even offers some specials deals: active duty military customers and teachers each receive a 10 percent discount on their purchases.

If you don’t want the credit because you have enough books, movies and music in your library, the staff can write the credit out as gift cards for your family and friends. It works great during the holiday season if you’re low on cash.

Each month, the store holds their Charity Book Sale. In fact, if the staff doesn’t take your items for trade, you can choose to donate them and they’ll be sold in one of those charity sales. Each month, more than 1,000 separate items are sold for either 50 cents or $1, or you can buy a grocery store sized bag and stuff it as full as you can, for only $7. The money raised through these monthly sales benefits a variety of non-profit organizations throughout Hampton Roads. Earlier this year, the Book Exchange benefitted The Hitching Post Educational Center, Faith Inclusion Network and Troopster.

But if the lure of specially priced books and the ability to trade items still isn’t enough to draw you in, the store also has local authors sign their books! What’s better than a good book, than getting a chance to meet the author and getting an autograph? Keep an eye on their Facebook’s event’s page for upcoming signings.

In case Norfolk might be too much of a trek for you to visit, the Book Exchange has a Virginia Beach store as well, located at 2720 N. Mall Drive, #200. Like the Norfolk shop, they also have more than 60,000 gently used books, movies and music choices. Their family-friendly shop also has a children’s play area to keep them occupied while the parents shop. The Norfolk Exchange opened in 2004 and added the Movie & Music Exchange in 2011.

Who is your favorite author? Share with us in the comments! Thinking about buying your new home this winter in Hampton Roads? Start your search with us!

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