Julio in his kingdom

The second part in a series of profiles about our wonderful staff. This week: Julio

A life-long Denverite, Julio can tell you where the 15 meets the 0 and where Celebrity Sports Center used to be. He has a knack of knowing lots of useless facts, which isn’t actually so useless for him since he regularly wins bar tabs at pub quizzes.

He reads a lot of very random stuff, especially science fiction and nonfiction that doesn’t involve a lot of footnotes. His favorite authors include William Gibson, Neal Stephenson,  Donna Tartt, Michael Pollan, and Orson Scott Card.

He also enjoys biking, journalism (check out his transit blog RTD Watch), gardening, trying out new foods, outdoor activities and anything involving trivia.

Fun facts

Clearly the best part about having a searchable database of all our books is the ability to find fun factoids about our book collection (these figures do not include bargain books, of which we have hundreds). So here we go:

  • We have over 30,000 books in the store at any one time
  • Over 27,000 of those books are under $10
  • The median price is $6.50
  • Only six books in the store were written by someone named “Hank”
  • 10,000 of the books are hardcover
  • We have 62 books about books (not counting criticism and author biographies)
  • We have 62 books by Jonathan Kellerman, 83 by Tom Clancy, 58 by James Patterson, 63 by Robert Ludlum and 83 by Stephen King. The obvious question is, who would win in a fight, Stephen King or Tom Clancy? If a fictional F-16 fighter jet carrying a Navy Seal on a super-secret covert operation crashes in the woods, will anybody buy it for $4?
  • Over 23,000 books are in “Very good” condition
  • We have 250 books about Colorado, 11 about Feng Shui, 167 about pets and 13 about UFOs (non-fiction)
  • 240 books have “day” in the title, compared to 250 with “night”. Our collection is truly in balance with the natural world

Remember, you can search our inventory online, too.

One cart, two carts, blue cart, red cart

Hanging in the clearance corner

Hanging in the clearance corner

In any economy, it’s a good idea to save money. Since our books are already discounted, you save money by choosing Capitol Hill Books over a new bookstore.

However, Capitol Hill Books has an even cheaper way to get your book jones on. Our clearance corner has a wide variety of books in good condition for as little as $.50 to $2. And its good stuff too: lots of hardcover mysteries, and interesting nonfiction books.

You can check out our window displays while browsing the carts

You can check out our window displays while browsing the carts

And if you just need a book but only got a tiny bit of dough, be sure to check out the carts we have just outside of the store. Paperbacks are only a quarter, and hardcovers just 50 cents. And since the money from those books goes to local nonprofits, you can feel great inside and out knowing that your book purchase is helping others in the community.

Amazon.com is trying to drive me insane

Aside from selling books from this web site and to walk in customers, we also list on Amazon. We sell several books every day and send them all over the country. And for every book we sell, Amazon takes a disgusting commission (seeing as how they do nothing but include our listing).

About a month ago, they decided that every morning, they would send a giant list of 20 or so books that did not go on the site for some stupid reason or another. And sometimes, they contradict themselves and we go nearly mad trying to figure out what they want us to do to list a book for them.

Here’s an example:

I want to list the following book.


Note the “Plastic Comb” binding note. So under binding in our inventory program, I put “Plastic Comb”.


In the morning, I get this error message: “The data you provided for [1408046] does not match the list of valid values.  Please select a valid value from the Data Definitions and resubmit.”

Well, after much wrestling (and because I can’t let a problem go until I get to the bottom of it), I figure out that I need to type “plastic_comb”, not “Plastic Comb” like they list on their own site.

This is just one reason why Amazon is terrible and going the way of eBay.

Bottom line, shop local!

In other news, two of our employees wrote an article (with a video) for the INDenver Times. Check it out.