How Much Do You Spend On Books?

As book bloggers, we’re obsessed with many bookish things, the most obvious being books.

2015-Discussion-ChallengeSome of us loan from libraries, some of us receive ARCs, and some of us just like to buy and own them. This results in all sorts of justifications for our hobby, and some interesting side-effects – book buying bans when we feel we’re over-spending (or just running out of shelf space!), and (in my case) scouring high and low for the best deals to make sure we don’t go homeless thanks to our literary loves.

I’m a great believer in hunting down deals and bargains (see my previous posts called Book Buying Bans and Me and Buying Books As Cheap As Possible), and I’ve always believed that while I do spend money on books, I spend a reasonable amount, and make sure I get a lot for my money. However, I’ve never set myself a strict budget, or been brave enough to put my bargain skills to the test and actually add-up what I’ve spent over the course of a year…

Money to burn gif

Octavia and Valeria made some interesting posts recently doing just that, and I thought I’d take the leap and join them. I’ve spent more than the following if you include purchases in physical bookstores, but being able to view my online orders was the only way to put this together as I don’t keep receipts (I plan to track my physical purchases in 2015 to compare next year!). Also, I’ve used the RRPs to calculate savings – while most stores will sell for slightly under this, again, this was the only logical way to put together this post. And finally, the amount I spent includes me using discount codes and the cash-back website Quidco to make savings.

The Book People

  • Total Books Bought: 70
  • Total Amount Spent: £117.25
  • Average Price Per Book: £2.67
  • Total RRP: £578.39
  • Total Saving: £461.14

The Works

  • Total Books Bought: 31
  • Total Amount Spent: £59.85
  • Average Price Per Book: £1.93
  • Total RRP: £244.26
  • Total Saving: £184.41


  • Total Books Bought: 9
  • Total Amount Spent: £28.81 
  • Average Price Per Book: £3.20
  • Total RRP: £85.30
  • Total Saving: £56.49

2014 Totals

  • Total Books Bought: 110
  • Total Amount Spent: £205.91
  • Average Price Per Book: £3.74
  • Total RRP: £907.95
  • Total Saving: £702.04

I know this doesn’t include purchases I made in a physical bookstore for 2014, but I’m actually pretty impressed with myself after breaking these figures down! My spend for 2014 works out at around £17 per month, and I think for someone who buys and reads books as much as I do, that’s pretty good! My love for deals and discounts appears to be working!!

Out of curiosity I’ve also included eBook purchases below, for the eBook RRPs, I just went with the current price on Amazon.

  • Total eBooks Bought: 35
  • Amount Spent on eBooks: £27.88
  • Average Price Per eBook: £0.79
  • Total RRP: £71.38
  • Total Saving: £43.50
  • Free eBooks “Bought”: 39

Let me know in the comments if you’ve ever added up your annual spend! Has this post made you think about calculating it? Or has it made you want to hunt out the best prices for your books??

About Rachel

Avid reader & #bookblogger. Lover of all things business. A fan of drinks & dancing. Ever optimistic. Feminist.

37 Responses

  1. Surprisingly, I don’t actually spend that much on books..Mostly because I’m not allowed to. So I mostly depend on netgalley (since I’ve started book blogging) and the HS library for books.. 😀 And mostly they don’t let be down and when they do, I’ve usually gone long enough without spending on books that my parents are lenient about me buying a couple.


  2. I can’t believe you bought that many books for such a small amount of money! That’s awesome! You really know how to get those deals! haha 🙂 This is a really interesting statistic… I’ve never thought of tracking how much I spend on books before.


  3. Brandie

    I am impressed!! For that many books, that is a great deal. I don’t think spending that much a month on your hobby is bad at all. Not when you’re so good at finding deals like you are. If you’d have asked me how much I have spent on books a few years ago, the dollar amount would have embarrassed me. I’m thankful to be able to use Netgalley and Edelweiss because it has cut down my spending immensely over the past few years. When I do buy hard copies of books, it’s to add those favorites to my shelves. Although I am a sucker for cheap eBooks on Amazon. I try not to go crazy with the one-clicking every month. Books that are only $1.99 or $.99 are so easy for me to cave to. In fact, I caved to one over the weekend. Lol. 🙂


  4. This is really interesting!

    I think I spend a lot less on books since I started blogging, thanks to netgalley and review requests and such. Plus, I’ve always been a fan of buying second hand books from charity shops and car boot sales.

    As far as new books go, I’d like to buy more but I have limited funds and shelf space – lol. I only buy ones I know I neeeed to read and keep. Maybe one or two a month max.


  5. I’ve never kept track of the money I spend on books. Truthfully, I don’t buy many books. I mean, I do BUY books of course, but I I primarily use the library and get a few books from Edelweiss or Netgalley.

    But I do buy books when I go to author events and the books are always full price then. And I will buy ebooks when they are good deals.

    I think I should definitely keep track of what I spend in 2015.


  6. I’ve never added up my total (but I think I will for 2015!) but I can safely say I probably spend less than $200 on books per year. I usually buy from Amazon and B&N for the convenience and because I have memberships with them that include free shipping. I recently discovered Book Depository and Book Outlet and will probably start using them as well. If I really love a book enough (or think I will) and I’m going to the trouble and expense of buying it, I prefer to buy new.


  7. I really try my best to limit the amount I spend by using the library an obscene amount, and getting ARCs through Net Galley. I really have to try not to just buy whatever i want on the Kindle, and that is so hard.


  8. I hate thinking about how much I spend on books because I know it’s a lot. I’ve gotten myself a spreadsheet to keep track of my reading this year, and one of the tabs on there is your bought books tab and you’re expenditure. I’ve already spent £70.00 this year, this does include a couple of pre-orders I put in last year and I do have a couple of book vouchers as well, so my actual money expenditure is not quite that high, but it still makes me cringe. I am terrible about searching out the best deal, I normally want the book as quickly as possible, and since I’m such a dedicated e-book reader I spend far more on e-books than is probably sensible.

    I keep thinking I should have a spending ban implemented, but I love reading so much I often think, who cares how much I spend on books, I’m still managing to save. But then I think my poor library card should probably get more use because a lot of books I read I should probably just buy from the library, but oh well. Eventually I may become a sensible book buyer, but I should enjoy being young and having a disposable income whilst I can.


  9. A lot of blogger are revealing their spending habits when it comes to books this year, and I think it’s been really insightful. I receive a lot of gift cards to book stores throughout the year, for birthdays and holidays, so I don’t have to spend a lot of my own earned money. That doesn’t mean I don’t ever. I’ve been known to buy a book on impulse. But, I would be surprised if I spent more than $70 of my own cash on books each year.


  10. […] as a means of justification, but it’s now something I want to keep doing out of curiosity (2014  spend / 2015 spend). Realistically, every hobby or interest has a cost associated with it, and judging […]


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