by Pamela Palmer

#79, 16 October 2006

BookThink's Top 10 on eBay
August 2006

Printer Friendly Article

Top 10 on eBay

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. In early January, we'll look back at the year and consider trends and highlights. To learn more about what's in and what's out of the lists, read our Top 10 on eBay Parameters.

NOTE: For item numbers of auctions featured in Top 10, subscribe to our free email list by writing Editor Craig Stark at

Both fiction and non-fiction winners reached 5 digits in August with non-fiction taking the lead. Would you have guessed Galileo could beat Tolkien? Other numbers kept the month interesting. One UK seller sold 3 on the fiction list, and 3 purchases were made by buyers who are now "not a registered user." The month also saw diverse reasons for selling, ranging from college money to that old favorite - the horses.

Fiction Top 10
August 2006

#1 $11,812.91 J.R.R.Tolkien..The Lord of the Rings..1-1-1 set in d/ws
#3 $4,079.98 Rupert Brooke - Signature to H Belloc's " On Nothing "
#4 $3,100.00 Stephen King Regulators (signed) *LETTERED* (UU)
#5 $2,500.00* Fantasic Art of Frank Frazetta SIGNED BY FRAZETTA
#7 $2,458.07 Ian Fleming -- Moonraker -- True 1st in d/w..Cape 1955.
#8 $2,000.00* Day It Snowed in L A by Charles Bukowski (1986)
#9 $1,895.48 C.S.Lewis.The Horse and His Boy..1st in D/w.1954..Bles

The Lord of The Rings
The Fellowship of the Ring
The Two Towers
The Return of the King

J.R.R. Tolkien

Selling for $11,812.91, the set consisted of 3 un-restored first editions/first impressions in original dust jackets. The first two titles are in very good condition and the third is in fine condition. Maps are in fine condition. Listed by a UK seller, the 10-day auction with 11 photos attracted 42 bids. In response to a question, the seller clarified that The Two Towers is dated 1954, not 1955 as listed in the presentation. The same seller also sold #7 and #9.

Dark Materials Trilogy
Northern Lights
The Subtle Knife
Amber Spyglass

Phillip Pullman

A set of 1st editions/1st impressions by Pullman came in at #2. Listed by a UK seller at GBP 2,950.00, it sold at that price with 1 bid after a 7-day auction with 12 photos. Each of the 3 titles in the set is signed on the title page by the author; Northern Lights is signed in black rather than Pullman's usual blue ink. In addition, Northern Lights has a Pullman-signed bookplate. The seller remarked these were sold "to finance my other hobby - horses."

On Nothing and Kindred Subjects
Hilaire Belloc

Belloc's 1908 book is remarkable primarily for its Rupert Brooke signature, indicating it was Brooke's personal copy. The signature is on the front free endpaper. Described as in good condition with some fading and a "small ink mark to front cover," the book was listed by a UK seller for 10 days with 5 photos. It started at GBP 49.99, received 39 bids, and sold for $4,079.98.

The Regulators
Stephen King

Listed by a US seller with 4 photos, The Regulators ended with a BIN at the starting bid of $3,100. Described as in mint condition, this unread book is a lettered copy UU, 1 of 52 printed.

The Fantastic Art of Frank Frazetta
Frank Frazetta

Purchased 2 days after listing as a BIN, the copy was purchased as a BIN by a buyer who is now a non-registered user. It was shown in 2 photos and is described by the US seller as a "signed presentation copy." The paperback is a later copy in very good condition.

The Gunslinger
Stephen King

A signed, limited edition, this copy of The Gunslinger is #326 of 500. David Whelan is the artist. Listed in mint condition and "still in the hard sleeve in which it was originally distributed," the book was listed by a US seller and shown in 2 photos. It sold as a BIN in just over 2 hours.

Ian Fleming

Sold by the UK seller of #1 and #9, the 1st edition, 1st impression copy of Moonraker is shown in 6 photos. The book and original dust jacket are in near fine condition. Listed for 7 days, the auction attracted 36 bids and ended at $2,458.07.

The Day It Snowed in L.A.
Charles Bukowski

In a terse listing consisting of item specifics and delivery information, the US seller listed this 1986 new softcover with 1 photo. Sold as a BIN for $2,000, the winner was a buyer who also won #5 and is "no longer a registered user."

The Horse and His Boy
C.S. Lewis

Sold by the same UK seller as #1 and #7, this 1st edition, 1st impression of The Horse and His Boy, was listed with 5 photos. The book was listed in very good condition and the original dust jacket in near fine condition. It sold as a BIN for $1,895.48.

Brideshead Revisited
Evelyn Waugh

Called a "stunning copy," the "first trade printing of the first edition," is described as a very near fine copy in a very near fine dust jacket. Listed by a UK seller for 10 days with 6 photos, the book sold at the starting price of GBP 999.99, or $1,895.18.

*Auctions marked with an asterisk indicate those won by a bidder who is no longer a registered user. The final value should not be interpreted as valid.


 Subscribe in a reader