Saturday, April 15, 2017

Great Find: BookOff Store at Lakewood Center Mall


I had to head to the Lakewood Center Mall over the holidays to pick up a last minute gift and was surprised to find a BookOff store. I have seen a few others around the Los Angeles area, but had never stopped in to one before. It turned out that I was in for a big surprise.

BookOff is a huge chain of stores in Japan that deal in used books, DVDs, mobile phones, video games, and consoles. These stores buy and sell, which is a wonderful way to help connect people with goods that are no longer needed. I have stopped in to a few of their locations over the years, but their do not really interest me, as I do not read or speak the language. I do, however, frequent the HardOff chain of stores (also in Japan) that deals in used goods that do interest me, such as guitars, effect pedals, and goofy consumer electronics.

Well, the Lakewood Center Mall location is not like the typical BookOff operations that I have seen before. There are certainly plenty of books, Playstations, iPods, and phones, but this store is also like a HardOff. That means there are kitchen appliances, notebook computers, watches, fashionable bags, and a whole wall of guitars and shelves full of effect pedals and amplifiers. Boo yah!

With the instruments, there plenty of mid-level instruments that are in great cosmetic and working condition. In fact, there was a really nice Epiphone Les Paul in Silverburst that caught my eye and the price was certainly reasonable. And looking at the rest of their inventory, everything was priced fairly. Also, the staff is very friendly, and the 30-day return policy is a nice reassurance that if something goes wrong the buyer is covered. You are not going to run into this in a pawnshop, and Craigslist can certainly be a crapshoot.

Adding all of this together, I have to say that Book-Off is a great addition to the otherwise dreary Lakewood Center Mall, and it is great to have them in the neighborhood. Looking over their website, there are six stores in Southern California, two stores in Hawaii, and one in New York City. If you are a gear hound, it would be well worth your while to check one of them out!



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