Think I've ruined a book loaned to me - what do I do?


Argh! A professor at my uni, not my supervisor, loaned me a book recently. I was planning to give it back to him this week but accidently spilled a glass of water over it yesterday. It is still in good condition but the bottom of it is obviously water-logged. However, the damage is superficial. Do I:

a. Buy a new one, even though it costs £40, which I can't really afford at the moment
b. Come clean, offer to buy a new one in the hope that he'll say no
c. Give it back and not say anything

I'm swaying towards b. - What do you all think?


I would also say B, dependant on how bad it is - particularly in case they have made any notes in the txt - you don't want to throw that away.

They will either be annoyed but realise its a mistake, or not be that bothered

can't imagine anyone needing a new book for the sake of a little water - and you save £40



If I lend someone a book I expect it returned in the condition its was lent.


Buy the book again.

Anything else is not decent.


What I would do is buy the person a book token to the value of the book, and give the book back with humble apologies and the book token. That way they might say you can keep the tokens if the damage is a superficial as you suggest, or they can replace the book themselves. This will ensure that they will lend others books in the future, and give you brownie points for owning up and doing your best to minimise the upset. The first is the most important though as sometimes your tutors/ supervisors are the only source of hard to find material.


I would buy the book - don't put pressure on your supervisor to let you off. They deserve to have the book back in the condition it was lent; to put them in a position where they look bad if they make you buy them another copy isn't very nice.


Buy the book (making sure it's the same edition that they lent you as well), because there's nothing more irritating than lending someone something and it coming back in a state, or not at all!


:( Sorry to say but I agree with Jouri and Golfpro.

I take great care of my things or the things I borrow from others, and when lending, I expect everyone to do the same.


I think I have to change my mind as well, having thought about it, if I lent a book to someone and it cam back dog eared I'd be annoyed they hadn't looked after it.

I think it was your responsibility to return it to them in the condition they gave it to you




Definitely buy a new book. It won't look good on your behalf if you didn't. Also you may be putting the owner on the spot by making them feel bad for asking you to get a new book when you actually should. An item lent should be returned as it was.


BUY THE BOOK! Come on ... manners and all that!!!


I would choose A.
b. Come clean, offer to buy a new one in the hope that he'll say no--He will probably say there is no need to buy a new one but might feel very annoyed
I think having a good relation with your professors is worth more than 40 pounts!


No question but to replace it. That is the risk you assume when you borrow a book. I won't lend books to anyone anymore, having had very bad experiences where people ruin the books, or have lost them, and not offered to replace them. These have been good friends, as well, and certainly people from whom I expected more. Based on a few of these, I simply do not lend anything anymore--no matter what--and tell people the reason is based on bad experiences.


I'm sorry to tell you, but I agree with the others - you should buy a new book...

If you go with option B he will probably know what you are trying to do (i.e. hope that he won't make you buy a new one) and that's not a good position to put him in.



Definitely buy a new book.