Could You Be Sitting on a Goldmine of Valuable Second-Hand Books?

The popularity of second-hand books has grown substantially, with more than half of consumers across the UK and US now actively choosing to buy second-hand books.

Which Second Hand Books Are Most Valuable?

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With projections suggesting that the second-hand book market is expected to reach a staggering £35.71 billion by the end of 2032, The Knowledge Academy is intrigued to find out which second-hand books are the most valuable, based on their resale price.

They did so by identifying new and used prices for popular novels to conclude which books have retained the most value compared to their original price.

Most Valuable Books

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  • Lucy Score’s ‘Things We Hide from the Light’ is the most valuable second-hand book, retaining over 90% of its new price.
  • David Baldacci’s ‘Simply Lies’ is the least valuable book of those analyzed, retaining only just over 20% of its new price.
  • Colleen Hoover has four titles ranking among the least valuable books based on resale price, all retaining under 36% of their new prices.
  • Romantic Fiction tops the table with the top three most valuable books all falling into this genre.


The Most Valuable Books Based on Resale Price:

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The Knowledge Academy can reveal that Lucy Score’s ‘Things We Hide from the Light’ is the most valuable book based on its resale price, retaining 90.52% of its new price. 

A used copy of ‘Things We Hide from the Light’ sells for £6.78 on average, maintaining 90% of its average new price, £7.49.

The Romantic Fiction novel was published in February 2023, and is the sequel to the BookTok triumph ‘Things We Never Got Over’. 

Ana Huang’s King of Pride ranks as the second most valuable, retaining 85.39% of its new price. 

This contemporary romance was published in May 2023, and is the second instalment in Ana Huang’s Kings of Sin series, another TikTok phenomenon in the book industry. 

The book has an original selling price of £9.99, retaining 85% of this with its used price of £8.53.

Ranking in third is New York Times bestselling author, Carley Fortune, with Meet Me at the Lake, which retains 80.78% of its new price upon resale. 

Also published in May 2023, this contemporary romance boasts its popularity and value, with an average new selling price of £9.99, maintaining 80% of this with its used copies selling for an average of £8.07.

The Least Valuable Books Based on Resale Price:

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The Knowledge Academy found that David Baldacci’s Simply Lies is the least valuable book based on resale price, retaining just 21.56% of its new price. 

This crime and thriller novel was published in April 2023, entailing gripping twists and turns throughout its plot. However, with an average selling price of £16.00, the book only manages to retain 21% of this price, with used copies selling for just £3.45 on average.

Curtis Sittenfeld’s Romantic Comedy ranks as the second least valuable book, retaining 25.48% of its new price. 

This contemporary fiction receives fantastic reviews from the likes of the Guardian and The Times, with its humorous and appealing plot. However, it fails to retain much of its original price (£14.99), with used copies selling for an average of £3.82. 

BookTok sensation Colleen Hoover ranks third with her book Verity, which retains 25.60% of its new price. 

Published in January 2022, this book was the winner of The British Book Awards 2023, winning Page Turner Book of the Year. Despite its popularity and success, the book only retains 25% of its average new price (£15.00), with used titles costing £3.84 on average.

Second-Hand Books

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Buying second-hand books is a great way to save money and live frugally while still reading all the great books. Reading is so important so having lots of books is a priority. Don’t forget to try to get as many books for free as possible, as well, to save even more money. 

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Hi! I am a millennial mom with a passion for personal finance. I have always been “into” personal finance but got inspired to start my blog after a period of extended unemployment. That experience really changed the way I viewed my relationship with money and the importance of accessible personal finance education.