First Edition Books

Discussion in 'Fine Living, Home, Design & Auto' started by L.R., Jul 17, 2011.

  1. L.R.

    L.R. Senior member

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    Does anyone collect them, or is willing to spend the extra dough on getting one when the opportunity arises? I've just been curious about that type of collecting for awhile now, and would love to hear peoples thoughts on it.
     
  2. Kai

    Kai Senior member

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    I don['t collect 1st editions, but I do collect old books relating to the Napoleonic era. I don't buy them as an investment, but rather because I love reading and owning them.
     
  3. Huntsman

    Huntsman Senior member

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    I don't necessarily collect firsts, either, but I collect old editions of books that I want to own--m specialty are embossed, gilt editions. Some classics, say Paradise Lost are available in incredibly beautiful bindings from the turn of last century that are fairly reasonable. I don't really care what they might be worth at some point.

    ~ H
     
  4. guest

    guest Senior member

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    how much would a first edition of the fountainhead go for? i know i know lots of u probably hate ayn rand buh iv always wanted one since seeing a hot girl with one for a gq photoshoot.
     
  5. nootje

    nootje Senior member

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    I'va collected a few 1st prints, mostly of books that I found impressive. One that comes to mind is 1984 from Orwell, is was delighted to get that one for a steal back then..
     
  6. Huntsman

    Huntsman Senior member

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    Check alibris.com
     
  7. guest

    guest Senior member

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    tnx! looking into it now. :happy: [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] i think the one i saw in the photoshoot didn't have a slip cover. if it is what i understand it is. they all say facsimile edition or library reprint though.
     
    Last edited: Jul 18, 2011
  8. guest

    guest Senior member

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  9. imatlas

    imatlas Senior member

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    I collect firsts. I used to collect pretty broadly, but have lately narrowed down my buying to a couple of authors and a general area: genre fiction, mostly science fiction and "weird fiction" (think HP Lovecraft et al). I'm actually in the middle of a major purge, hoping to cut down from around 2,000 books to 500 or fewer.

    My best acquisition, BTW, was a copy of Edward Abbey's "Down the River", first edition / first printing in dustjacket for $.25 (25 cents!). I eventually sold it to a dealer for $400, he in turn sold it to Edward Abbey's son, who had been estranged from his late father and was attempting to put together a collection of first editions of all of his father's books.

    Best acquisition of anyone I know: a friend, who is a small time book dealer in Iowa, bought a box of books at a farm auction. One of the books turned out to be a first edition of the Federalist Papers (with both volumes), which is a highly sought after book. To cap it off, it had the signature of the original owner - a member of Congress from the Federalist Party! The signature was validated by research in the Library of Congress. The box of books cost $300 at the auction, but that one book had an estimated value of $75,000 or more.
     
  10. foodguy

    foodguy Senior member

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    for purely sentimental reasons, i collect signed first from authors who have been important to me in my career: julia child, mfk fisher, marcella hazan, paula wolfert, james beard, etc. just nice to have.
     
  11. imatlas

    imatlas Senior member

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    Very cool, and about the best reason for collecting something that I can think of.

    Out of curiosity, do you have a signed first of "How to Eat a Wolf?" I loved that book.
     
  12. foodguy

    foodguy Senior member

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    i don't. i've got a signed first of "physiology of taste" in a slip-covered edition.
     
  13. Andrewc2232

    Andrewc2232 Senior member

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    My friend bought a bookstore a couple months ago. On one of his trips down to New Orleans to buy stock, he picked up a first edition, first printing Gravity's Rainbow for a buck. Excellent condition, too.

    As for myself, I buy 1st's when I can but am typically more concerned with getting a quality hardcover in good condition than I am with the edition. Every month or so I spend about $50-75 bucks at abebooks.com or alibris.com buying 5-10 excellent condition vintage hardcovers. I don't have any intention of ever selling any of my books, so future value isn't a huge concern.
     
    Last edited: Jul 30, 2011
  14. kwilkinson

    kwilkinson Having a Ball

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    Yes, I too collect signed copies of books by dudes important to my development. Don't think it was a first, though.

    :slayer: SICK!
     
  15. L.R.

    L.R. Senior member

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    Nice.... I keep on thinking I want to collect books in the same way: books that rank among my favourite bought in first edition. Unfortunately, have you seen the prices for a first edition copy of Dune?
     

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