To some, I suppose, reading book collector and/or bookseller autobiographies/biographies (including books about notable collections) doesn't sound like the most thrilling way to spend an evening, but I highly recommend it if you love books, also if you want to learn more about bookselling at the first tier. These books can help elevate you. Usually. And some are downright good reads. I don't know of any bibliographies dedicated to this niche, but there are two resources that will deliver enough titles to keep you busy for years. One is Joseph Rosenblum's A Bibliographic History of the Book, which contains 36 pages of examples with brief synopses. Another is Donald C. Dickinson's Dictionary of American Book Collectors, which, along with brief biographies of noted American book collectors, provides bibliographic citations of sources. Often these sources include autobiographies/biographies in book or article form.
Not all of these books are a good investment of time, however. Take Leon H. Vincent's DeWitt Miller: A Biographical Sketch. I recently purchased this ca. 1912 Riverside Press Limited Edition of 1,000 copies on the strength of a few lines I read in Dickinson's dictionary, quoting it: "Toward the end of his life he [Miller] moved his books to a two-story library built for him by a friend on the grounds of a girls' school in Maryland. There among the oak trees Miller's gentlemen's library found an appropriate resting place." This stuck me as having at least the potential for a good story. Not. This book is bad. Badly written and near devoid of useful content - and this is too bad because Miller was a driven and unusually knowledgeable collector who seemingly led an interesting life. After turning the last page, I was left with the feeling that I might be the only surviving person on this planet who has slogged through this book. However, there are two charming photographs in it that are nearly worth the purchase price to me, an exterior and interior view of Miller's secluded Maryland library. You get them at no charge:
We're reprising an article today because I believe it's an important one - Part I of Stan Zielinski's superb compilation and analysis of the top 100 collectible children's books. We originally published this almost two years ago, also published his Part II, but failed to publish Parts III and IV. We're going to redress this omission by publishing all four parts in consecutive issues of the BookThinker. These are keepers, especially if you are involved in buying and selling children's books.
Chapter 12 of BookThink's Guide to Online Bookselling has been delivered to subscribers. This is a comprehensive, in-progress bookselling how-to available by subscription here. It's approximately half completed, and new subscribers will receive current and all remaining chapters as they are issued.
Chapter 12, by the way, is the first in a series of chapters on how to buy inventory, and it presents an inductive, statistical method for identifying authors and titles that currently generate the most interest in the marketplace, present the most opportunities for us in the field, and provide the highest returns. Can't ask for much more than that, and believe me, this is a method anybody can master.
BookThink's popular First Edition Library Checklist has been reformatted to PDF and now includes thumbnail photos of cover art for all FEL titles. The FEL, for those not familiar with it, is a series of extraordinarily faithful first edition facsimiles of over 100 notable publications, most of them issued with protective slipcases. Many are now out of print and all are enthusiastically collected. As booksellers, it pays for you to know of them and about them. Our checklist package includes a checklist of all 111 FEL titles, thumbnail images of cover art, indications of most and least valuable titles, indications of rarest and most common titles, detailed issue points (where applicable), explanatory notes, and the full text of Stan Shelley's superb, illustrated primer on the First Edition Library.
If you have purchased the earlier version (which was available in DOC and TXT formats), you can upgrade to the new version for $5. The price for first time buyers is $14.99. Either option can be exercised by clicking here.
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Also, BookThink's complete Gold Edition is now available in PDF format. All 59 Gold Editions have been recently updated (and in some cases expanded) and combined into a PDF format e-book. A table of contents presents clickable report titles, and the entire document is searchable by keywords. The PDF format ensures 100% compatibility with all computers, tablets and smartphones, and it's easier than ever to take the Gold Edition with you on scouting trips. Purchase it here for $59.99.
Click here to see several sample pages. (And yes, we're working on converting and updating 50/50 and QMR as well.)
Important: If you have previously purchased a complete Gold Edition package, this e-book is available to you at no charge. Email me at email@example.com for your copy. Also, if you have purchased any Gold Edition issues either singly or in groups at any time, we will subtract those purchases from the price of the e-book. Again, email me at firstname.lastname@example.org and we will research your purchases and forward a discounted invoice reflecting them.
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Copyright 2003-2011 by BookThink LLC
Copyright 2003-2011 by BookThink LLC