by Pamela Palmer

#135, 29 June 2009

Which fiction and non-fiction books are winners on eBay? Each month this series answers the question and, along the way, looks at the listing strategies sellers use to bring in big bucks. To learn more about what's in and what's out of the lists, read our Top 10 on eBay Parameters.

NOTE: Items numbers are now included in this article. They are in the individual auction comments section below the author and title. Click the links to see the listings.

Notice how many fiction and non-fiction top 10 titles are sold as Best Offer or Buy It Now? The trend continues in May 2009 with 16 - count 'um - selling without the traditional eBay auction experience taking place. Of those 16, 6 sold as Best Offers and 10 sold as BINs. Even in the Antiquarian & Collectible top 10, there were 1 BO and 1 BIN. Maybe it's time to nail down the underlying import for booksellers.

Fiction Top 10
May 2009

#1 $3,300.00 Lot SIGNED Cormac McCarthy Border Trilogy 1st Ed MINT
#2 $3,050.00 Dark Carnival, Ray Bradbury, 1st, Arkham House
#4 $2,000.00 Comics Hardcover LETTER A OF 26 COPIES SIGNED R. CRUMB
#5 $1,500.00 The Twilight Saga Collection by Stephenie Meyer SIGNED
#7 $930.00 Clive Cussler Vixen 03 Proof Extreamly RARE
#8 $898.00 THE LORD OF THE RINGS (1955) J R R TOLKIEN uk 1st eds.
#9 $750.00 George R. R. Martin A FEAST FOR CROWS Signed Ltd Edn
#10 $790.00 The Commitments Roddy Doyle First Edition Mint Unread

Border Trilogy
All the Pretty Horses
The Crossing
Cities of the Plain

Cormac McCarthy

2 of the 3 volumes are signed by the author, and all are marked "first edition." Described by the seller as "new in excellent pristine condition. The trilogy sold as a Best Offer.

Dark Carnival
Ray Bradbury

60 bids took this Arkham House 1st edition to $3,050.

The Sign of the Four
Arthur Conan Doyle

Published as a magazine series, this 1st edition consists of a "bound volume [that] contains January to June copies of Lippincott's Magazine of 1890 without the magazine covers." It sold as a Best Offer.

R. Crumb Comics: The Story of My Life - People...Ya Gotta Love'em - I'm Grateful! I'm Grateful!
Robert Crumb

The fine copy in a slipcase was previously the property of the Black Sparrow Press publisher. It is described as "copy 'A' of 26 letterd copies signed by Robert Crumb and lettered by him ...."

Twilight Saga Twilight
New Moon
Breaking Dawn
Stephenie Meyer

Continuing the Project Book Babe fundraiser, Stephenie Meyer donated another 4-volume boxed set and signed all the books plus the box. 35 bids It garnered 35 bids to sell for $1,500.

Huckleberry Finn
Mark Twain

The 1st edition, 1st printing is described as containing "three (3) of the issue points that are most critical to having First Printing status." It sold as a BIN.

Vixen 03
[ARC Proof]
Clive Cussler

Sold as a Best Offer, this "might be the rarest book I've seen in 7 years of collecting Cussler."

Lord of the Rings
The Fellowship of the Ring
The Two Towers
The Return of the King
J.R.R. Tolkien

The Fellowship of the Ring is 1st edition/4th impression in very good- condition with a good+ dust jacket. The Two Towers is a 1st edition/2nd impression very good- copy in a good+/very good dust jacket, and The Return of the King is a 1st edition in good+/very good condition with a good dust jacket. All 3 volumes have maps in fine condition. The set sold as a BIN.

Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire
J.K. Rowling

Signed by Rowling at Carnegia Hall, the book is described as in "absolutely mint A1 Condition." It sold as a BIN.

The Commitments
Roddy Doyle


The US seller describes this 1st edition as "published in Dublin under the name 'King Farouk,' by the author himself. Very limited and very scarce now."