Books By The Foot

Frequently Asked Questions

Purchases Rentals

How does Books by the Foot work?

If you order from one (or more) of our collections via the website, our team will box and ship your books, and soon after that they will arrive at your door! If you don’t see what you’re looking for, or you’re interested in a bulk order, feel free to directly contact us by emailing or calling 212-660-6646. We can curate collections in most styles and subjects, so when in doubt, ask!

Books by the Foot is not a discount program nor is there a fee for our services. We simply assemble a personalized collection for you within your chosen price range. We help you get the content and aesthetic you want while keeping you within budget.

Can I customize my order by subject and color?

Yes! Most collections of can be customized by color. Please contact the Books by the Foot team ( or 212-660-6646) to discuss availability and receive a customized quote.

How many books are in a foot?

There is no set number of books in a foot, as the quantity can vary depending on spine thickness. However, generally there is an average of 10 books per foot.

Is there a limit to how many feet I can order?

No, there is no minimum or maximum on the number of feet you may order. However, certain categories may be limited by availability. Orders must be placed in whole feet.

How long does an order take to complete?

We can put together most custom collections within 24 hours. Orders of 75 feet or more may require a longer lead time. If you are on a specific timeline, please let us know when you order, and we will do our best to accommodate it.

Can I see the books before the order is finalized?

If you order via the “Buy Now” button on the website, your order will be processed and shipped without review. If you prefer to review your books via photos and a title list, you may place the order with us by emailing or calling 212-660-6646.

Markdown collections are sold as-is and are not available for review.

Do you sell fake books/prop books/books that are blank inside?

Nope! All our books are taken from the Strand’s in-store inventory. Our collections are made up of used and new books that provide both high quality shelf presence and something great to read.

If I order from a collection, will I receive the books in the collection photo?

The books pictured with each collection are a sample of the offerings from that category. Each new order is individually curated by our Books by the Foot experts. You can expect books of similar subject and/or look as those pictured, but each order is unique.

Can I come into the store and buy a Books by the Foot collection?

We’d love for you to stop by and talk to our Books by the Foot team about putting together a collection! However, each collection is curated once it’s been ordered, so we do not have pre-made Books by the Foot collections available for purchase in store.

Do I need an appointment?

Appointments are not necessary, but they are recommended if you would like to guarantee our availability to discuss your project.

Can I choose the books that are in my collection?

One of the great things about Books by the Foot is we provide a custom curated collection based on your interests. You tell us what you like, and we put together a collection you’ll love! You can choose the subjects and styles of the book in your collection, and if you have specific authors or titles that you’d like included, we’re happy to add them to your order if we have them in stock.

However, if you want to personally choose all the books in your collection, that order would be processed as a standard sale, and you would pay per book at the store price. If you want to hand select a large number of books in store, we can assist you with selecting and boxing up the books.

Is there a discount for bulk purchases? How about designers?

All of our books are taken from our in-store stock, which is already significantly discounted, so we are unfortunately unable to offer any further discounts. Sorry!

I was looking at a collection and the website says there are a certain number in stock. Is that how many books I’ll get?

The “in stock” number listed on our website measures the number of feet available for online purchase in that collection. For example, if you are looking at the Fiction Classics Collection and the website says there are 33 in stock, that means there are 33 feet of Fiction Classics books available for purchase online.

If you’d like to purchase a greater amount of footage than what is listed as available on our website, please contact us directly at or 212-660-6646.

What are the shipping options?

Our standard domestic shipments ship via UPS so that they are trackable and insured. We offer Domestic Standard Shipping and Domestic Express Shipping, including both Next Day Air and Second Day Air as well as International Shipping. We can ship via US Postal Service if requested or if shipping to a P.O. Box. UPS and other expedited shipping methods are not available to P.O. Boxes.

Car delivery is available for $50 in Manhattan and to the Outer Boroughs for $75. Deliveries are available Monday through Friday. You are also welcome to arrange pick up for your order.

What payment options do you accept?

The Strand accepts all major credit cards, checks, cash and purchase orders. We do accept purchase orders from companies approved to bill net-30. Credit card authorization forms are processed via a secure online process. Please do not email your credit card information. If you have any questions about payment or are interested in setting up a billing account, email or call us at 212-660-6646.

What’s your return policy?

Books with dust jackets can be returned within two weeks of receipt. A large amount of returned books may be subject to a 10% restock fee. When shipping returns, please clearly mark the packages for Books by the Foot.

Markdown books and books without jackets (including books by color) are final sale.

What if I order online and then I need to cancel the order?

Please contact us at or 212-660-6646 as soon as possible if you no longer want your order. Orders that have been placed but not yet fulfilled can be cancelled with no fee. Orders that have been fulfilled but not shipped can be cancelled for a restock fee of 10% of the order cost. Orders that have already shipped cannot be cancelled, but you can return them in accordance with our return policy.

I have more questions! How can I contact you?

You can speak to us in person in our offices on the third floor of Strand Bookstore, by phone at at 212-660-6646, or via email at Our offices are open Monday through Friday, 9:30am–6:00pm.

How do I place a Books By The Foot rental order?

Orders can be placed in person in our offices on the third floor of Strand Bookstore, by phone at at 212-660-6646, or via email at Our offices are open Monday through Friday, 9:30am–6:00pm

How many feet can I rent?

There is no limit to how many feet a rental can be. However, larger rentals require a longer turnaround time, and orders for more than 60 feet of trade size books or more than 30 feet of oversize books will be charged a per foot larger order fee.

What is your turnaround time?

Depending on rental size, we can put your rental together in as little as a few hours. Most rentals can be available for pickup within 24-48 hours. Rentals larger than 15 feet needed in less than 24 hours will be charged a per foot rush fee.

Can you customize the rental so the books are appropriate for my project?

Yes - this is our specialty! We can pull books for any kind of character, from virtually any time period. Please get in touch to discuss all possible options.

My project is a period piece. Can I rent books from a certain time period?

Yes, we have a very large vintage inventory and can create a collection from almost any time period. Please note there is an additional fee if books must be restricted to specific publication years

Can I customize my rental order for a specific look?

Yes! Most collections of can be customized by color or style. We're happy to discuss available options for your rental. There are additional fees for customization by spine color, spine text color, height/depth restrictions, and dust jacket removal.

How long does my rental last?

Our rentals are for one week. You may extend your rental if you need more time; the extension charge is 10% of your total rental cost for each additional week.

Can I pick out my own books?

Yes. The cost for renting books you've selected yourself is the full price of the books up front and half back upon return. For these rentals you can check out at any register; just ask to speak to a manager. You will need to return the books to a manager in person to receive your half back refund.

Clearance and final sale items are not eligible for full price, half back rentals. Paperback rentals must be approved and processed by the Books by the Foot department. To rent clearance, final sale or paperback books, please contact us at or 212-660-6646.

What payment methods do you accept?

For rentals, we accept all major credit cards You can also pay for rentals by check or wire, but rentals will not be pulled until payment has been received. Credit card authorization forms are processed via a secure online process. Please do not email your credit card information.

Clients interested in setting up a billing account must provide credit/trade references and be approved by Books by the Foot. All terms net 30.

Can you deliver our rental?

Rentals can be picked up at our Broadway location or you may request a car delivery. Car delivery is available for $50 in Manhattan and to the Outer Boroughs for $75. Deliveries are available Monday through Friday from 11 am to 4 pm.

We can sometimes accommodate delivery to Long Island, New Jersey, and Connecticut; timing and prices will vary and are subject to driver availability.

We no longer need our book rental. Can I cancel my order for a refund?

Rental orders may be cancelled until the books have been pulled for that order. Unfortunately, we are unable to cancel an order or refund you after your order has been filled.

I lost/damaged a book you loaned me. What now?

You will be responsible for the full cost of the lost or damaged book. In the case of a multi-volume set, the entire cost of the set will be due if any volume is lost or damaged.

We are a small, independent production. Do you offer discounts?

Due to the large demand for book rentals, we do not currently offer discounts for our rental services.

I need a W-9 form from you. Who do I contact to get it?

Please contact Miguel Soto at 212-660-6646 or

May I rent books in exchange for a Strand promotional mention?

Rentals for promotional exchange must be approved. Please contact our Director of Marketing and Communications, James Case Odum at

Standard Rental Price

$35/ft for trade sized books
$75/ft for oversized books

*Please note add-on fees are cumulative. Ex: books without jackets by color are an additional $30/ft ($20 for jacket removal, $10 for color restriction)

Pricing Add-Ons

Large Order

Trade size: $45/ft (trade size - this is an additional $10/ft)
Oversize: $85/ft (oversize - this is an additional 10/ft)

Books by Color - Rental

$45/ft (trade size - this is an additional $10/ft)
$85/ft (coffee table books - this is an additional $10/ft)

Books by Color, With Dust Jackets Removed - Rental

$65/ft (trade size - this is an additional $30/ft)
$105/ft (coffee table books - this is an additional $20/ft)

Dust Jackets Removed, no Color Preference - Rental

$55/ft (trade size)
$95/ft (coffee table books)

Height/Depth Requirements - Rental

$45/ft (trade size - this is an additional $10/ft)
$85/ft (coffee table books - this is an additional $10/ft)

Color of Text on Spine - Rental

$45/ft (trade size)
$85/ft (coffee table books)

Publication Specification (books published before a given year) - Rental

$55/ft (trade size)
$95/ft (coffee table books)