Monthly Archives: July 2011

Used & Only Slightly Abused—Our New Used Book Shop

We could build office cubicles for ourselves with these boxes, but we’d rather sell the books inside to happy readers.

Book publishing is a peculiar business. In a practice pretty much unique to the industry, publishers allow bookstores to return unsold product for full credit. The returns policy has its roots in the Great Depression when desperate publishers convinced booksellers to take a chance on stocking more copies or the work of an unknown author by offering to take back any unsold books, no risk to the shopkeeper.  This NPR story does a great job of summing up the practice.

The books come in, the books go out. Sort of like that song about the worms. Generally, they come back in good condition, but we often receive back copies that just aren’t in a condition to be sold to our online customers or sent back out to bookstores. For the past few years, Watermark Publishing has had a discount table each year at the Hawai‘i Book & Music Festival filled with nothing but our store returns and “hurts” (the term for books damaged in the normal course of business), offering them up to the public at rock bottom prices. The popularity of the “Publisher’s Hurts Sale Table” at the annual festival has prompted us to open up a new section of our online store that offers these returned copies for sale year-round.

As can be expected, the books in our newly-launched used book shop show signs of wear and tear. While they’re technically not “used” — they’ve never been owned by anyone else — well, they are a little abused. The damage ranges from barely noticeable (minor scuffs or smooshed corners; damage to a dust jacket that doesn’t affect the book itself) to more serious defects (torn, bent or loose pages; crushed or bent spines; peeling corners; pricing stickers that won’t come off). All copies are marked on either or both the top outer edge or over the barcode to indicate that the book is a hurt copy and cannot be returned to a store. Discounts in our used book shop range from 60-85% off the cover price. Additional discounts, such as coupon offers, do not apply.

Used books return policy: All books sold in the used book shop are as-is condition; by purchasing a hurt copy you accept that we will send you a book with the type of damage described in the product summary. It may be in better or in slightly worse condition than you anticipated. We have done our best to provide photographs and describe the general type of damage the copy you receive may have sustained, but we cannot catalog each copy, nor can we provide you with a written description of a specific copy’s condition. We will accept returns only under the following conditions:

  • Damage to the book does not match the store description (e.g. If you receive a copy with unbound pages, but the description only indicated minor scuffing)
  • Pages completely missing (or you may opt to receive PDFs or photocopies of the original pages at no additional charge)
  • Mold or other decay damage (we will not knowingly send out a moldy book; we give the books a quick inspection, but on occasion stores have returned books that sustained water damage not immediately apparent)
  • All returns claims must be transacted within 14 days of purchase
  • All returns must be pre-authorized; contact us at sales@bookshawaii.net with your order number and reason for return prior to shipping back any books
  • Returns must be sent back at the expense of the buyer, with a tracking number (USPS, FedEx, UPS, etc.)
  • No refunds on shipping charges
  • If any of these policies make you uncomfortable, particularly the idea of receiving a slightly-damaged book sight-unseen that you can’t return, please do not purchase through our used book shop. Sign up for our newsletter (you’ll receive an instant coupon via email for 30% off) and purchase a new copy instead.

We do not purchase used books for our shop. We have enough of our own, thanks!

Browse the Used Book Shop

Crushed corners, worn dust jackets, marks and dog-eared pages typify the kind of damage on “hurt” books.

VIDEO: “Biting Commentary” Focuses on Hawaii’s Coffees

The final episode of HONOLULU Magazine’s “Biting Commentary with John Hecktahorn” ran last Sunday, July 17, and focused on Hawaiian coffee. The Hawai‘i Coffee Book: A Gourmet’s Guide from Kona to Kaua‘i served as a valuable source of information for the show, as the only comprehensive book on the subject covering ALL of Hawai‘i’s coffees.

Watch the episode here, which features our favorite downtown coffee shop, Beach Bum Café. (They also happen to be our neighbors and the only shop brewing up nothing but 100% Hawaiian coffee.) Stop by; you may find “Dr. Coffee” Steiman making your cuppa joe.

You can purchase The Hawai‘i Coffee Book at Beach Bum, at your favorite bookstore or online at www.bookshawaii.net.

And congratulations to our contest winner, Darrell, who guessed there are “3000 big Kona beans!” in a pound of coffee on our original post on Hawai‘i coffee on Biting Commentary. The answer, as published in The Hawai‘i Coffee Book, was 2,800 to 4,725 beans in a pound (depending on the size of the beans).

VIDEO: “The Hawaii Farmers Market Cookbook” on “Biting Commentary”

Green Papaya & Pork Soup by Chef Ed Kenney

Chef Ed's Green Papaya & Pork soup; photo by Adriana Torres Chong

Chef Ed Kenney of Town and Downtown restaurants cooked up his Green Papaya and Pork Soup recipe, featured in The Hawai‘i Farmers Market Cookbook, on HONOLULU Magazine’s Biting Commentary with John Heckathorn on Sunday, July 17.

Watch the episode and visit the Wednesday night farmers market at Blaisdell Center — a great way to pick up fresh, local veggies straight from the farmer on your way home from work — with host John Heckathorn; meet the women behind Feed the Hunger Foundation, a remarkable non-profit micro-financing organization that helps local folks trying to “make it” in food-related business (restaurants, food trucks, farming); and then visit Chef Ed’s kitchen for soup and sandwiches, Kenney-style!

You can purchase The Hawai‘i Farmers Market Cookbook at the Kapi‘olani Community College farmers market at the info booth or online at www.bookshawaii.net.

And congratulations to our contest winner,  Amelia Barrow, who shared her favorite local ingredient, Maui onions (and boy, does she love ‘em!) on our original post on Chef Ed on Biting Commentary. The contest is now closed, but we’d still love to hear who taught you to cook or to love food! You can comment below or on the original post.

The final episode of Biting Commentary features Hawai‘i coffee. Read more about the episode, and The Hawai‘i Coffee Book by Shawn “Dr. Coffee” Steiman, plus enter our trivia contest to win a copy of the book here.

From Bean to Cup—Savor Hawaii’s Coffees

Hawai‘i Coffee Book author Shawn Steiman helps harvest coffee.

Hawai‘i is known worldwide for the gourmet coffee of the Kona Coast, but if you’re a real coffee nerd, you know that Kona’s just the beginning. The only place in the United States growing coffee as a commercial crop, our state hosts a thriving industry encompassing 10 major regions on five islands with approximately 7 million pounds produced last year, valued at over $30 million. We’re also unique as a coffee-producing center: Whereas most coffee is consumed far from its origins, Hawaiian coffee is drunk and sold right here at home in local cafés and stores.

Bean-and-brew guru Shawn “Dr. Coffee” Steiman, author of The Hawai‘i Coffee Book: A Gourmet’s Guide from Kona to Kaua‘i, is one of those aforementioned “coffee nerds.” His book provides an overview of Island coffee history, from modest beginnings on O‘ahu—not Kona as many might assume—to current-day production systems, as it makes its way from bean to cup, farm to coffeehouse. You don’t need to be a coffee nerd to appreciate his book, though; in addition to historic and scientific background on coffee, the book lists farms, cafés and retailers, plus over a dozen recipes for cooking with coffee—everything from appetizers and entrées to desserts and drinks.

Roasted Lamb Chops with Kona Coffee Hoisin Glaze; one of the recipes featured in The Hawai‘i Coffee Book.

Coffee’s also the topic of the next—and series finalé—episode of HONOLULU Magazine’s Biting Commentary with John Heckathorn TV series, presented by Hawaiian Airlines, airing on KGMB9 on Sunday, July 24, 2:30 pm.

What you’ll learning from Biting Commentary: Hawai‘i isn’t just the home of the only U.S. commercial coffee industry; we’ve got a current Coffee of the Year award-winning coffee (Kaliawa Coffee Farm in Ka‘u received 5th place—out of 10—from the Specialty Coffee Association of America; this is the 5th straight year a Ka‘u coffee has placed in the top dozen of the world) and the nation’s top barista, Pete Licata of Honolulu Coffee Company, plies his trade here too. (Pete went on from the U.S. Championships to take 2nd place at the World Barista Championships. His win is partially credited to Rusty’s Hawaiian 100% Ka‘u Coffee, which he used to make his winning brew—from coffee cherries he hand-picked himself at the farm; this guy is a serious coffee nerd, people!)

Tour the famed coffee regions of the Big Island with Biting Commentary, from Kona to Ka‘u; sip and savor fresh-brewed coffees at Beach Bum Café in Honolulu (our downstairs neighbor, by the way; owner Dennis McQuiod makes sure to keep us and other downtown denizens well-caffeinated, and if you stop by, you may find “Dr. Coffee” Steiman making your cuppa 100% Hawaiian brew); and learn to make the perfect cappuccino from champion barista Pete Licata.

Know what you’re buying: Coffees claiming to be Hawai‘i-origin must contain at least 10% Hawaiian beans (by weight). That’s one bean in 10.

We’re so buzzed about Hawaiian coffee on Biting Commentary, we’re giving away a copy of The Hawai‘i Coffee Book to one lucky winner, selected at random. Tell us in the comments below how many beans you think are in a pound of coffee. The answer, as published in The Hawai‘i Coffee Book, had a roughly 2,000 bean spread, i.e., between X and Z beans in a pound — the answer depends on the size of the beans — so we’ll accept as correct any guess that falls between those two numbers. We’ll pick a winner from among the correct guesses. Contest closes at 11:59pm on Sunday, July 24, 2011; see the end of this post for additional contest rules.

We think Biting Commentary will perk up your day. Brew a fresh pot (and make it Hawaiian!) and watch the episode this Sunday, July 24, at 2:30pm on KGMB9.

Special Deal: We’re so excited about Biting Commentary with John Heckathorn that we’re offering 30% off all our non-sale titles at our online store. Use coupon code BITEBOOKS to get your discount.

Contest Rules: A winner will be selected at random from the valid comments posted prior to the contest closing time. To be counted as an entry, the comment must include an on-topic answer. One entry per e-mail. The winner will be notified via e-mail; in the event that we do not hear back from the winner within 48 hours to confirm acceptance of their prize, a new winner will be chosen. Winners who do not respond within the stated time frame forfeit their prize claim.

How Many Grains of Rice?

Ricegrains1500ppxWe asked you to guess how many grains of rice there are in one pound of long grain rice. We had many answers, ranging from around 8,000 to 1 million. We had six guesses that came in within our 1,000 grain cushion, and the two lucky winners who will each receive a Hawai‘i Book of Rice + rice paddle prize package are:

Josh Schaeffer, who guessed 30,000

and

Lori Hasegawa, who guessed 29,100

The correct answer (as published in The Hawai‘i Book of Rice)? Approximately 29,000 grains of rice in one pound of long-grain rice.

Congratulations to Josh and Lori! We hope you’ll make some delicious rice-ipes and share your results with us!

Chef Ed Kenney & The Hawaii Farmers Market Cookbook “Biting Commentary” Giveaway

Chef Ed Kenney

Chef Ed Kenney; photo by Adriana Torres Chong

Chef Ed Kenney (Town in Kaimuki & Downtown at the Hawai‘i State Art Museum) and The Hawai‘i Farmers Market Cookbook – Vol. 2 will be featured on the next episode of HONOLULU Magazine’s Biting Commentary with John Heckathorn TV series, presented by Hawaiian Airlines, airing on KGMB9 on Sunday, July 17, 2:30 pm.

In this episode of Biting Commentary with John Heckathorn, learn about Feed the Hunger Foundation, visit the farmers’ market (shopping with a chef is always fun!) and go into the kitchen with Chef Ed.

For this episode, he cooks up Green Papaya and Pork Soup (a recipe that can be found in The Hawai‘i Farmers Market Cookbook – Vol. 2) and a Pork & Papaya Banh Mi Sandwich, demonstrating how using the same ingredients can result in dishes with completely different, yet complimentary, taste profiles. Chef Ed is passionate about food security and making the most out of (local!) ingredients; he’s become legendary for his “snout to tail” cooking, using all the parts of a single animal — pork from Shinsato Hog Farm in Kahalu‘u is a big favorite of his — and for his motto:

Local first, organic whenever possible, with Aloha always.

You can read host John Heckathorn’s account of the shopping and cooking experience at his “Biting Commentary” blog.

Green Papaya & Pork Soup by Chef Ed Kenney

Chef Ed's Green Papaya & Pork soup; photo by Adriana Torres Chong

To celebrate his appearance on the show, we’re giving away a copy of The Hawai‘i Farmers Market Cookbook – Vol. 2 to one lucky winner, selected at random. In this cookbook from The Hawaii Farm Bureau Federation, Chef Ed and 17 other of the Islands’ top chefs (Alan Wong, Roy Yamaguchi, Vikram Garg, Hiroshi Fukui and D.K. Kodama, just to name a few) share their recipes for cooking with the locally-raised ingredients you’ll find at the farmers’ markets. Tell us in the comments below what your favorite locally-raised ingredient is. If you buy it at farmers’ market, tell us why you love shopping there. (We know not everyone has a chance to get to the markets, so we won’t count it against you for shopping at a regular grocery store; we’re just happy you buy local!). Contest closes at 11:59pm on Sunday, July 10, 2011; see the end of this post for additional contest rules.

Tag along with Chef Ed and John on their farmers’ market trip and watch them in the kitchen this Sunday, July 17 at 2:30 pm!

Special Deal: We’re so excited about Biting Commentary with John Heckathorn that we’re offering 30% off all our non-sale titles at our online store. Use coupon code BITEBOOKS to get your discount.

Contest Rules: A winner will be selected at random from the valid comments posted prior to the contest closing time. To be counted as an entry, the comment must include an on-topic answer. One entry per e-mail. The winner will be notified via e-mail; in the event that we do not hear back from the winner within 48 hours to confirm acceptance of their prize, a new winner will be chosen. Winners who do not respond within the stated time frame forfeit their prize claim.

VIDEO: Watch Chef Chai on “Biting Commentary”

Chef Chai Chaowasaree and his book, The Island Bistro Cookbook, made an appearance on HONOLULU Magazine’s “Biting Commentary with John Hecktahorn” on Sunday, July 10.

Tag along with Chef Chai and John Heckathorn as they shop in Chinatown (ever seen a dried sea cucumber? How about $90/can abalone?) and take their haul back to the kitchen to cook up some delicious Abalone-Stuffed Cabbage Rolls and Dried Scallop Fried Rice.

You can purchase Chef Chai’s book at his Island Bistro restaurant at Aloha Tower or online at www.bookshawaii.net.

And congratulations to our contest winner, Melanie Boling-Barrow, who shared her story about her culinary influence, her grandmother, on our original post on Chef Chai on Biting Commentary. The contest is now closed, but we’d still love to hear who taught you to cook or to love food! You can comment below or on the original post.

Chai’s Island Bistro “Biting Commentary” Giveaway

Chef Chai in Chinatown

Chef Chai at Chinatown's Sun Chong Grocery; photo by John Heckathorn.

Chef Chai Chaowasaree (Chai’s Island Bistro at Aloha Tower & Singha Thai in Waikiki) will be featured on the next episode of HONOLULU Magazine’s Biting Commentary with John Heckathorn TV series, presented by Hawaiian Airlines, airing on KGMB9 on Sunday, July 10, 2:30 pm.

In this episode of Biting Commentary with John Heckathorn, Chef Chai and John shop in Chinatown for ingredients exotic and mundane. Chef Chai likes shopping in Chinatown’s Kekaulike Market; he says it reminds him of his childhood in Bangkok when his mother would send him to the market for ingredients for the dishes she cooked in the family’s restaurant. Chef Chai credits his cooking skills to his mother; the dedication to his book, The Island Bistro Cookbook, reads:

For my father, You Kien Saetung, and my mother, Chun Saechung, my best friend and my soul, who made me who I am today. She taught me not only how to cook, but how to live.

Read more on Chef Chai and John’s adventures in Chinatown at John’s “Biting Commentary” blog.

Chef Chai shops in Chinatown

Photo by John Heckathorn

To celebrate his appearance on the show, we’re giving away a copy of Chef Chai’s The Island Bistro Cookbook to one lucky winner, selected at random. Chef Chai dedicated his book to his mother, his cooking mentor. Tell us in the comments below who your culinary inspiration is, that special person who taught you how to cook or gave you your love of food. Contest closes at 11:59pm on Sunday, July 10, 2011; see the end of this post for additional contest rules.

You can tag along on Chef Chai and John’s Chinatown shopping expedition and go into the kitchen as they whip up Chai’s Fried Rice and also Stuffed Cabbage with Abalone this Sunday, July 10 at 2:30 pm!

Special Deal: We’re so excited about “Biting Commentary with John Heckathorn” that we’re offering 30% off all our non-sale titles at our online store. Use coupon code BITEBOOKS to get your discount.

Contest Rules: A winner will be selected at random from the valid comments posted prior to the contest closing time. To be counted as an entry, the comment must include an on-topic answer. One entry per e-mail. The winner will be notified via e-mail; in the event that we do not hear back from the winner within 48 hours to confirm acceptance of their prize, a new winner will be chosen. Winners who do not respond within the stated time frame forfeit their prize claim.

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 415 other followers