Need a Book?

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 More than half a million books are being sold at the 46th annual  "Big Book Sale," an event that raises money for the San Francisco Public  Library.

The five-day sale, which began at 10 a.m.Wednesday at the Fort Mason  Center's Festival Pavilion, features books, DVDs, CDs and books on tape.

Excluding rare books - such as an early edition "Lord of the  Rings" by J.R.R. Tolkien - all books will be sold for $5 until Sunday, the  last day, when they will be sold for $1.

"We've been able to process many more books this year than we used  to be able to," said Sara Bassett, an organizer of the event.

Bassett is an employee of Friends of the San Francisco Public  Library, an organization that aims to raise $1 million per year for the  library system. The money helps fund programs at the main library and  branches throughout the city.

Bassett said volunteers have been able to process 100,000 more  books for this year's sale, compared to last year, because of the  organization's donation center, which opened in 2008.

The center, located at 438 Treat Ave., boasts a "small army of  volunteers" who sort books in a 5,000-square-foot warehouse, she said.

Bassett couldn't estimate how many book lovers will attend this  year's sale, but said she expects a lot of customers.

 "There are always lots of people at the Big Book Sale," she said.

The event runs through Sunday.

Bay City News

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