If you need hardware, try Surplus Computer in San Jose or Action Computer in Sunnyvale or Palo Alto. Both places carry the same selection of cables and cases as Fry's for about half the price, and the staff actually know what they're doing.
For books, try Book Buyers on Castro Street in Mountain View. Way in the back they have a nice selection of used Computer Books. I've found copies of the Camel Book for as low as $15. In bygone days I would have directed you to Computer Literacy, but post-bubble, CL is no more.
"What do I want? I'm an American. I want more."