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Where to buy physical books in Chinese? (online)


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Insectosaurus
59 minutes ago, roddy said:

Looks to be available on Taiwanese second hand book platforms - here and here. Does that help? I have no experience with those sites and don't know if you've looked at them before. And congratulations on your first post.

 

I certainly had not! Looks very promising. I'll try to make a purchase and hope for the best. I should probably check out the sequel as well. They seem to offer international shipping. Huge thanks. I'm thinking I should probably grab a bunch of other stuff while I'm at it. I really wanted to read 平凡的世界, but no luck there. I've been following the "What are you reading"-thread and noticed some of you guys have read quite a lot. I really like what I've read of 山楂树之恋 so far (15 chapters in), and will probably order 活著 as well, considering everyone recommends it. Some recommendations would be fantastic. I'm going to compare with films since that's my age old interest.

 

1. I absolutely adore the settings in a lot of Hou Hsiao-hsien movies and also A Brighter Summer Day by Edward Yang, we're talking 1950's Taiwan but also up to the 1980's. The relocation to Taiwan, the Japanese legacy (perhaps I'm using the wrong English word here), the youth gangs, night school and all that. I do have Crystal Boys (Niezi) on the shelf, but decided I'd go for something easier for a first book, and that certainly seems very worthwhile.

 

2. 1940's Shanghai or perhaps a bit earlier, but preferably the 40s. I do know about 围城, and while it seems very interesting, I'm thinking more romance, spy stories and such, the dark streets, the nightclubs. Think Lust, Caution.

 

3. 1960's Hong Kong. Think In the Mood for Love.

 

4. Qing dynasty culture. Vague, I know. I adored the first few hundred pages of The Dream of the Red Chamber (English version) but have decided to wait until I can read it in Chinese. And yes, I do realize that's going to take a long, long wait, but I'm also thinking it should be worth it!

 

5. Detective stuff. Serial killers and the like. Think Cure (Kiyoshi Kurosawa), giallo and such.

 

I don't think I'm much into wuxia...

 

Now, 山楂树之恋 is my first book, but 15 chapters in I can safely say I have no trouble reading or understanding it. That said, it also means I still have no idea what my level is currently at. So after finishing that one I don't know where to go next. I've noticed it's much longer than say, 活著, which I've noticed is being regarded as a good first book. 山楂树之恋 has twice the amount of unique words than 活著, but as we all know words are one thing, and structure another. Will I run into a brick wall going for something else than 活著? 🧐 I would love to read something by Eileen Chang, like 張愛玲, but I'm guessing that's way, way above my current level. Even more so for Mo Yan.

 

I've many times noticed I'm writing a lot longer sentences in English than in my native language, which I guess depends on lack of using it regularly. Sorry for wall of text... Also sorry if I should have asked this in another thread, it felt natural to reply to your comment.

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I have ordered books at Taaze twice from Spain and everything went fine. I remember I had a little problem with the Spanish customs, they asked me about the content of the pack, but when I said they were books, I only had to pay the books VAT, and that was it. 

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Insectosaurus
37 minutes ago, Geiko said:

I have ordered books at Taaze twice from Spain and everything went fine. I remember I had a little problem with the Spanish customs, they asked me about the content of the pack, but when I said they were books, I only had to pay the books VAT, and that was it. 

 

Thanks! Taaze it is then.

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roddy

@timseb, can I suggest you start a new topic for your recommendations request - it'll get seen by more people, and the discussion won't get mixed up with the practicalities of book ordering. No need to write anything new, just paste in what you've already written. 

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roddy

Second order turned up in exactly a week, despite tracking claiming it's in Dubai. The larger flimsier book was a little bashed, but UK Border Force had opened it, so I blame them. 

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  • 2 weeks later...
roddy

That's my third JD.com order turned up - think they're averaging about a week and a half. The tracking can be a bit laggard - this one had allegedly just left Hong Kong when it turned up.

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roddy

My JD.com obsession continues. 

There's currently a 'spend 100, get 50 off' promotion on books from JD.com (as opposed to third-party sellers on the site). See here for garish landing page. This discount is applied automatically.

On the same page you can claim (just click on them) vouchers for further discounts - 60 off 400, 40 off 400, 20 off 100, etc. Some are limited and become available at specific times. Just claim all that look useful and see if you can apply them later. Some apply to specific categories. You have to select these, once claimed, on the checkout page under 使用优惠/礼品卡/抵用. 

 

On this page you can claim a 50Y shipping discount, 运费卷, but they're limited and become available at 9am, 2pm, 8pm and midnight. 

 

These promotions seem to come around pretty regularly, but I was playing around and got an 11 book order, 412Y's worth of books, down to 459Y delivered, or 41Y a book. Would have been cheaper if I'd got any of the harder-to-get vouchers. Regardless, that's the cheapest I've managed yet.

 

Edit: Ok, got a 50Y shipping voucher, but on this page, not the one I linked. Can be used with my 50 off 400 voucher, for an average price of 37Y a book. 

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  • 6 months later...
jannesan

I've just made an account for 京东 attempting to buy a few books, but anything I have searched so far is shown as "海外无货" and I can't add it to my shopping cart.

If I set the location to 北京 it lets me put items in the cart, but trying to check out with my Dutch address it says again "订单分商品不支持对当前地址的配送请返回购物车修改".

How did you all manage to order to UK/Norway etc.?

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roddy

Hmm, clicking the 仅显示有货 filter with delivery address set to UK brings up a big fat nothing on the books I checked. Hopefully temporary, definitely wasn't the case when I ordered last year.

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  • 2 months later...
amytheorangutan

Since I'm going to do a big order end of this month (still compiling list of what I want to order to save shipping cost) I thought I'd mention books.com.tw I think I've mentioned them somewhere else but honestly this site is amazing for traditional character books, they also have simplified character books. Shipping is extremely reliable, I have used them to send to UK and Indonesia multiple times, always arrive in 4-5 days. Shipping is a little bit expensive, I think it gets cheaper when you buy more, I haven't paid that much attention but so far each book ends up costing me around 10-11 pounds incl. shipping. 

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RedInkstone
On 1/13/2021 at 2:56 PM, roddy said:

Hmm, clicking the 仅显示有货 filter with delivery address set to UK brings up a big fat nothing on the books I checked. Hopefully temporary, definitely wasn't the case when I ordered last year.

 

Update:

I signed up to global.JD.com today (it only worked on PC, when trying to sign up via my mobile phone it did only accept mainland phone numbers), and it still says 无货 under every single article (not limited to books) that I've seen. This is a real bummer, I want to order some non-fiction books, that I cannot find on any other website that ships globally.

 

When I googled and baidued for an answer I couldn't find anything besides news that JD is moving its international shipping HQ to HK, though I am not sure if this only relates to their B2B platform. 

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amytheorangutan
1 hour ago, RedInkstone said:

I signed up to global.JD.com today (it only worked on PC, when trying to sign up via my mobile phone it did only accept mainland phone numbers), and it still says 无货 under every single article (not limited to books) that I've seen. This is a real bummer, I want to order some non-fiction books, that I cannot find on any other website that ships globally.

I actually tried JD as well last month, thinking that if it’s a lot cheaper I might try to read simplified. All the books are unavailable for UK customers but when I switch the country to Indonesia suddenly everything becomes available. I was going to send some to my mum in Indonesia but once I added the shipping cost, they ended up the same price as books.com.tw so I ordered from that site instead because I’ve used them before. 

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Balthazar

At the danger of coming across as being affiliated with them (having posted this in a couple different threads): an agent service such as Superbuy will take care of all of your "they won't ship abroad" troubles. Shipping ain't cheap, but not outrageous either, considering how cheap you're getting the books from JD/taobao etc

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