A colleague told me the Booksale branch in SM Baguio was "probably" the best in the entire network. That was enough of a reason for me to finally pay a visit to the controversial mall, on Monday. I think we frequent Booksale and other used-books bookstores for three reasons, or at least I do: We look for a cheaper version of a current title (perhaps caught, inadvertently, in the used-books network). We depend on the serendipity of rummaging, and buy titles we hadn’t even heard of, or know very little about. Not least, we hope to find a copy of a classic we’ve been meaning to read, or own a copy of , but are not willing to waste the tiniest amount of our book budget on. The SM Baguio branch (very cool, because of redundant air-conditioning) delivered on the last two excuses, and big-time. I’ve been looking for a copy of Stendhal’s The Life of Henry Brulard for, what, maybe 20 years now. Well, I found a Penguin in excellent condition; price: P121. I also found a book I barely knew but wanted — immediately — to buy: Gloria Emerson’s prizewinning coverage of the Vietnam War, Winners and Losers. The price, at P70, was a clear winner.