GetchaBooks, founded by three youngsters (two who are still undergrads at Tufts), has just announced an expanded and improved database of classes and books, pushing the number of schools available in their unique interface from 600 to 1,275.
GetchaBooks is different from other services like Chegg and Textbooks.com in that the search system is centered around courses. Rather than typing in “Advanced Dance Movement For Accountancy Students” into a search box, you select your school, your courses, and sections. GetchaBooks then searches its database of courses and finds the required reading for each course.
Book.ly and Slugbooks also offer by-coure searches as well, although Getchabooks is a bit more streamlined.
The founder, Michael Walker, is charmingly down-to-earth about his creation. “We’re not in it to get rich or famous – there are definitely more glamorous markets to be in than textbooks,” he said. “We’re just three starving students who were frustrated by how much the bookstore was ripping us off who decided to do something about it and help our classmates.” Ah, the naive idealism of youth!
They’re making their cash through Amazon webstore affiliate links so they don’t ship or store any product. There is also no rental provision on their site, something that their-more advanced competitors already have. I also found a few major colleges missing in their list, something that definitely needs to be addressed before this gains a wider audience.
However, the goal is noble: to make it much easier for our future leaders/drinkers of America to get their textbooks. It’s an interesting concept that turns the textbook sales equation on its head and I’m totally, as the kids say, down.