Hello. My Name is Lawrence.
I started Best and Fastest Books back in 2009 while studying History at Rutgers University. The not so gentle madness started when I saw an ad on Craigslist about a mad scientist’s book collection and was intrigued. Next thing I knew, I was in a truck packed with 20,000 out-of-print books.
Later that year, I graduated with a Master’s Degree in History. My original intent was to pursue a career in education. However, the lure and adventure of bookselling was in my blood.
I found a space in a local warehouse from the embroidery days and rented it. My dad and I traveled to all kinds of places looking for discarded shelving units. I had no idea how I was going to bring my idea to fruition. I often asked myself whether selling books in the era of the eReader was a viable concept. I laughed. I cried. I obsessed. I sold books. Then, I sold a few more books.
Suddenly, it hit me. The books were selling. People want these old time travelers. Who knew?
Slowly, my madness turned into a full time job. As the sales grew, I hired my friend Levy, then my mom, and then a few more guys. Before I realized it, the business was up and running. I was surprised, relieved, depressed, anxious – you name it. I learned about books on the job, day after day. I went from picking up boxes of books at local libraries to cleaning out estate sales. I invested in scanners and software, then rented another two floors of the warehouse. My book business was growing before my eyes.
Today, Best and Fastest Books employs the whole family. My mom and dad list and catalog books and media. My wife runs the operations. My sister recently joined us and is cataloging the antiquarian books. My brother-in-law helps out with new technology.
I’ve come a long way from that first batch of books, but I’ve never lost my sense of wonder. I love the book hunt; the thrill of finding a rare signed first edition, or a long out-of-print gem. Books are in my blood now, perhaps they always were.
If you’re still reading, thank you. Your support is invaluable to my family and my wonderful staff.
I am a much better bookseller than I would have been a teacher. I love the freedom (if not the stress) of running my own business. I’m happy the business provides for my parents. The books, well, they’ve surprised me also. Despite the sea of entertainments available today, people are still reading. Our love of books is here to stay. Thank you for sharing it with us.
This is Where we work
Best and Fastest Books occupies three floors of warehouse space in a turn of the century building. The floors creak and the freight elevator is ancient.
There’s still plenty of shelf space so if you got books, you know what to do.
CALL LAWRENCE AT 201-663-1751
GEt in touch
Have a book lead? Want to donate some books? Let us know.
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