11 Collectible Books Worth A Ton Of Money That Might Be On Your Bookshelves Right NowA first edition is the first printing of a book. It's true that a first edition may have one or more printings and that a second edition will normally be noted only if there are actual changes, usually major, in the text. But for a collector, a first printing is the only true first edition. Within the first printing there can be differences that make the earlier books in the printing more valuable than the later books in the same printing. These differences are identified by "points," which are discussed elsewhere. If it's difficult to explain book collecting in general, the reason for collecting first editions is even more difficult to explain to those who are not afflicted with the mania. Bob Wilson, in his book Modern Book Collecting , deals with the question when he comments on book collecting in general:.
Identifying and Collecting First Editions
Rare and antiquarian books can be surprisingly valuable. But, like art, most books will never become really valuable, and collectors are generally motivated by love of literature and books rather than the prospect of making a fast buck. Traditionally book collectors trawled second-hand bookshops or maybe bought a box of books at an auction for the thrill of the chase — hoping to find an elusive tome. But, like all other areas of collecting, the internet has transformed the market. During the Celtic Tiger boom, high rents resulted in the closure of numerous bookshops and many booksellers moved their business online. Focused collecting often leads to serendipitous finds in the most unlikeliest of places. Cultivating links with specialised dealers is also recommended.
Child's play: Deborah Davis says illustrated books are popular with investors. When you pack your bags for the summer holidays this year, take extra care when you choose your reading matter — hidden among your books may be an investment gem. Sales of e-readers such as the Kindle may have exploded — electronic books accounted for 15 per cent of all book sales last year — but demand and prices for first edition printed novels are soaring. According to Bristol-based Paul Fraser Collectibles, the most sought-after first edition fiction has risen on average by per cent in the past decade. With increased interest in the internet and electronic books the world has become more transient. There is a beauty about physical books with the shared memories of when you first read them that is becoming more valuable than ever. Deborah, who trades at book fairs nationwide as McHardy Rare Books and is also chair of trade body the Provincial Booksellers Fairs Association, says there is no substitute to getting out and finding books rather than just buying online.
Identifying the First Edition of a Book
You may not have thought too much of it when you bought your first Harry Potter book or that tattered copy of The Catcher in the Rye from a garage sale, but you might want to look again. Note that the highest prices are only achieved for pristine first-edition copies with their original dust jacket coverings, if applicable. Many will have a copy of the best-selling novel, and Helen Fielding's 90s love bible has since been turned into several successful Hollywood films. A small but tidy profit. HG Wells is held as the godfather of science fiction thanks to the wildly imaginative, far-beyond-its-years storyline of The Time Machine. The Postman Always Rings Twice is a dark 20th-century psychological thriller that became wildly popular after its publication.
Rowling's The Tales of Beedle the Bard, of which only seven gem-covered, leather-bound editions were made. Sure, most of the books described below are still signed first-editions , but instead of something totally unaccessible like Shakespeare's Folio think more along the lines of Stephanie Meyer's Twilight or Dan Brown's The DaVinci Code. Sounds a lot more likely, right? According to Abe Books , if you were lucky enough to score any of these books between the years of and , you might just be in for a pretty decent payday. Check out 11 of the most collectible books of the decade below and then troll your own shelves or set your folks back home on a scavenger hunt through those dusty boxes of old books in their garage.