Secondhand: Travels in the New Global Garage Sale by Adam Minter

From Goodreads: “Downsizing. Decluttering. A parent’s death. Sooner or later, all of us are faced with things we no longer need or want. But when we drop our old clothes and other items off at a local donation center, where do they go? Sometimes across the country-or even halfway across the world-to people and places who find value in what we leave behind.”

I feel like I’m in a constant state of cleaning out my house and donating to charity. Just to the left of me right now are five bags of clothing waiting to be donated to a local charity. Last year I donated eleven boxes of children’s books to our local library, and will have several more to donate this year. And our house still has too much stuff, but I’m working on it. All my brothers and sisters are dreading the day our mother dies because she is a collector and has a household of stuff: Precious Moments, Norman Rockwell Plates, Hummels, depression-era glassware and dinnerware, you name it, she’s collected it. She even has all my old Strawberry Shortcake dolls packed away. We’re going to be stuck going through it ourselves or hiring a cleanout company as described in this book.

Secondhand: Travels in the New Global Garage Sale by Adam Minter is an interesting look at the global market of secondhand items. At times the book drags on, and other sections left me wanting more info, but overall a very good book for a society of consumers.


The section on the Goodwills of southern Arizona was enlightening. I wish the stores in our area had the same price points of $2.99 or $4.99 for clothes. I shop at my local Goodwill on occasion an never find prices that low, even for obviously-worn items.

The section on secondhand clothing was most interesting to me, because that is a source of great consternation to me and my house. And the section on secondhand books. Of course, I didn’t buy the book because I’m working on getting books out of my house, so I borrowed it from the library to read on my Kindle. #BargainSleuth

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