Mystery House Book Shoppe - FAQs

Mystery House Book Shoppe

[ Book Finder | Our Catalog | Book Conditions | Ordering ]

Mystery House sells used books. We comb the thrift stores, stop at all garage sales, stand in line at estate sales and bid at auctions - so we can offer you a wide selection of paperback and hard cover books in good condition at 'readable' prices. We think that the search is as fun as the finding, so we happily dig through boxes, sneeze our way through dusty shelves and travel miles to book sales. If you'd rather read than do all that work, Mystery House is just the place for you to shop.

As our name suggests, Mystery House is 'THE' book shoppe for mysteries. But, if you like sci-fi, fantasy, crime, action & war, you'll find a wide selection of those too. Sometimes we come across a collectable book and it will be priced accordingly in the catalog. But, our commitment is to provide readable books at reasonable prices to people, like ourselves, who just like to read. You will find thousands of readable books in our catalog.

Audio books can help eat up the car miles better than any 'lead foot'. Mystery House is committed to building a catalog of these for you as well. Should you receive a defective audio tape we will refund the cost and shipping immediately.

Book Finder Service

If you are looking for a particular book but cannot find it in our catalog search area and would like us to find it for you, click on the 'Book Finder' icon and provide us the specifics. If, during our travels, we are able to locate it, we will notify you before placing it into our catalog - you'll get first rights to obtain it.

Mystery House Catalog

For each catalog entry in our database, you will find the author's name, book title, description, estimated book weight, genre, S]oft or H]ard cover designation, price, publisher and book condition. We use a variety of codes within the database to define each book, they include:

  • M=Mystery
  • A=Action, Adventure, and/or Espionage
  • S=Sci-fi or Fantasy
  • W=Western
  • D=Drama, Romance and miscellaneous
  • B=War stories
  • N=Non-fiction, Biographies of Crime Figures, Authors and/or War Heroes and stories of the strange and unexplained
  • T=Thriller, Terror, and Courtroom Drama
  • Y=Youth
  • Z=Audio Tape Books
  • E=Anthologies
  • C=Collectables
  • V=True Crime

Some book publishers, such as Zondervan, specialize in 'Christian' reading, even when it comes to mysteries. Check the story description for the keyword 'Christian', if this is an area of interest.

Book titles do not include beginning prepositions, for example, "The Captive Witch" would be listed as "Captive Witch". The title is followed by a short synopsis of the story or a series description, such as 'Lew Archer mysteries' or 'Riddle Master trilogy'.

Weights are used to calculate postage. As you fill out your shopping cart, the weights will be added up by the website and the postage and handling charge will be calculated for you if you have a U.S. zip code and will appear on the billing portion of the shopping list. All non-U.S. zip code locations must be recalculated by us after receipt of your order. We will e-mail the final cost for your approval.

Book Condition Codes

As we've discovered in working with various book dealers, we can all look at the same thing and see it a bit differently - especially when it comes to condition coding. So, if you're a collector, drop us an email, give us a call or fax us prior to purchasing a collector book. We want you to be pleased with your purchase and we'd rather spend the time, up front, describing a book's condition versus having you go through the hassle of returning a book that did not meet your expectations. Below are the codes and definitions which we use to describe our books:

  • Read Only - Not in very good condition. Pages may be loose and/or the cover may be in rough shape, torn or soiled. But, if its written by your favorite author, who cares? Read only books which are priced very low may be good for only a few more reads. Average priced read only books may just be missing a jacket or have some tape repairs, but are good for a lot of re-reads.
  • Library - We often run across discarded library books. These books will have library markings on the inside and/or outside. They would fall into the 'good' category if they were not library discards.
  • Book Club - Hard cover editions sold by Book Club.
  • Good - If you are used to reading 'used' books, this is most often what you read. There may be creases in the spines, maybe some bent covers, small tears, or a watermark where someone confused the book for a coaster. If a hardcover, it might be missing it's jacket. The book might not be perfectly square because it got packed negligently in a box or bag on the way to the church bazaar. But, all in all, these books are nicely broken in and ready to read... again and again.
  • Very Good - These books remind you of model homes - where you wonder how some one lives there yet it doesn't show? The spines and covers look great. If there is writing inside the book, it is neat and discreet. There could be imperfections on the covers or pages, but nothing the guy sitting across from you on the subway would ever notice.
  • Near Fine and Fine - You won't find a lot of these in our catalog, but once in a while we run across books that are new or near new. These are excellent buys and a welcome addition to anyone's bookcase.

Ordering Books

As you find books you wish to purchase, just add them to the shopping cart. When done, you can review your list and delete or add to it. Happy with your selections? Instruct the system to total everything up for you and calculate the shipping and handling cost. If the books are to be shipped to a Michigan address sales tax must be added by Mystery House after the receipt of the order.

The U.S. Postal Service provides the best rates for book shipments. We do not use any other carrier. Our experience with book mailings indicates that these mailings take an average of ten days. Depending on where you are, it could be shorter or longer. So, the name of the game is don't wait to run out of books to read before you place your next order with us. The postal rates are valid for all addresses with an United States postal zip code. With postal rates, the more books you buy the cheaper it becomes to mail them so it pays to order MORE books LESS frequently.

If we are shipping to an address without a U.S. postal zip code (i.e. international), we will calculate the postage for you and email you with the re-calculated total for your approval. Only then will we ship your order. You will also be responsible for any additional taxes, duties or other customs fees that may be applicable.

Mystery House Book Shoppe
865 Fairfield NW
Grand Rapids, MI 49504
(616) 735-4256


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