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Tolkien Collector's Guide
Nov 22, 2017
2017/11/22 9:12:17 (GMT) Greenwich Mean Time, London, Dublin, Lisbon, Casablanca, Monrovia

To be fair, it doesn't look like a great copy. There is obviously damage to the top of the spine, and severe blotching to the leather around the bottom half of the spine (damp related, I'd guess). If I was in the market for spending this kind of money on a book (or a bit more), I personally wouldn't be buying that copy.

That is exactly the reason why I passed on this book. Having been an avid collector of artwork, condition is tantamount for me. If I were to spend thousands of dollars on something, I might as well add another thousand to obtain a copy that is more appealing to my eyes.


Khamûl wrote:
What's "horrible" about the #36 copy for sale on ABE?

Need to lower your expectations I think. Also, what's the deal with trying to buy up all these top-end copies of The Silmarillion?

BH

I try to abide by the similar standards that I have set for myself when collecting artwork. If I were to add a collectible to my collection, I would like the "finest work" done by the artist at his "finest period" in "finest condition." Those are the formulas that have served me well when it comes to my artworks holding their values (beating inflation) or even appreciating in value.

I might sound like a money-hungry collector who is in this noble hobby only for gains, but I am not as sinister as how I have portrayed myself.

All my artworks and books are feast for my eyes. The mere fact of possessing them brings me immense joy. However, I find the prospect of the collective value of my collection rising in value, equally intoxicating as well.

FIY, I have purchased more than several dozens of artworks in the past (and hundreds of other small collectibles) and I have only sold a SINGLE ITEM in the market, in my lifetime of collecting (only 30 years =P). Although I will never sell my high-end Silmarillion (most likely), I still want my collection to rise up in value.
Nov 22, 2017 (edited)
2017/11/22 11:04:52 (GMT) Greenwich Mean Time, London, Dublin, Lisbon, Casablanca, Monrovia
"That is exactly the reason why I passed on this book. Having been an avid collector of artwork, condition is tantamount for me. If I were to spend thousands of dollars on something, I might as well add another thousand to obtain a copy that is more appealing to my eyes."

I also "like"/"prefer" to collect something in the best possible condition (ideally Fine).

However when it comes to certain books - it just proves next to impossible to find a copy in the desired condition

This book comes to mind

http://www.tolkienbooks.net/php/details.php?reference=63530

15 years plus trying to find a copy without a faded spine.

And back to the deluxe Silmarillion - similarly this book is pretty hard to find at all (one copy a year maybe for sale) - and finding a fine copy also then really lessens the odds. The spine is quite prone to fading on this book also not to mention other possible condition issues.

Personally - I did hold out on this patricular book waiting for the elusive fine copy - and got lucky in the end - but only after a long 12 year wait!

But I have also often purchased a book (mostly applying to more scarce editions or where the price is too good to pass on) in less than the desired condition - just to have a copy in the collection. Then if a better copy comes along - buy it and sell the old one. I don't see anything wrong with that either. I have never found it difficult to sell a scarce book in "any" condition. If it is purchased at an appropriate price - it is also generally easy to sell it at an appropriate price.

But being a completist collector - I suppose I am more likely to purchase more "temporary" copies - just to have a copy in the collection.
Nov 22, 2017
2017/11/22 12:30:43 (GMT) Greenwich Mean Time, London, Dublin, Lisbon, Casablanca, Monrovia
Some great comments Remy- I agree

I imagine that even between the collectors on this forum there are only 10-20 copies of this book and we have many years of collecting between us all. The rarity of the book is one thing , the scarcity is which they come to market is 10 fold + or even more.
Good luck though- keep those eyes peeled
Nov 23, 2017
2017/11/23 14:52:53 (GMT) Greenwich Mean Time, London, Dublin, Lisbon, Casablanca, Monrovia

remy wrote:

I also "like"/"prefer" to collect something in the best possible condition (ideally Fine).

However when it comes to certain books - it just proves next to impossible to find a copy in the desired condition

This book comes to mind

http://www.tolkienbooks.net/php/details.php?reference=63530

15 years plus trying to find a copy without a faded spine.

And back to the deluxe Silmarillion - similarly this book is pretty hard to find at all (one copy a year maybe for sale) - and finding a fine copy also then really lessens the odds. The spine is quite prone to fading on this book also not to mention other possible condition issues.

Personally - I did hold out on this patricular book waiting for the elusive fine copy - and got lucky in the end - but only after a long 12 year wait!

But I have also often purchased a book (mostly applying to more scarce editions or where the price is too good to pass on) in less than the desired condition - just to have a copy in the collection. Then if a better copy comes along - buy it and sell the old one. I don't see anything wrong with that either. I have never found it difficult to sell a scarce book in "any" condition. If it is purchased at an appropriate price - it is also generally easy to sell it at an appropriate price.

But being a completist collector - I suppose I am more likely to purchase more "temporary" copies - just to have a copy in the collection.

This is truly humbling. Thank you very much for your sage advice, Remy.

Waiting for two decades to find a book that meets your expectation...I am barely keeping my sanity ever since I have set my goal of obtaining the Silmarillion Super Deluxe Signed Edition and it has only been two months!

Your diligence and endless patience inspires me to be more patient as well.

I was thinking... maybe you can bestow me with the enormous honor of preserving the Signed Super Deluxe by selling it to me :) *wink wink*
Jul 16, 2020
2020/7/16 17:37:46 (GMT) Greenwich Mean Time, London, Dublin, Lisbon, Casablanca, Monrovia
My search continues! Please let me know if you have one in NF to FINE condition for sale!
Jul 16, 2020
2020/7/16 18:06:58 (GMT) Greenwich Mean Time, London, Dublin, Lisbon, Casablanca, Monrovia
Good luck
Wonder how many have been seen since this trail started ? 4-5 , 1-2 signed ones ?
Jul 16, 2020
2020/7/16 18:09:16 (GMT) Greenwich Mean Time, London, Dublin, Lisbon, Casablanca, Monrovia
Three unsigned copies on eBay alone, since Christmas (2019).
Jul 16, 2020
2020/7/16 22:10:45 (GMT) Greenwich Mean Time, London, Dublin, Lisbon, Casablanca, Monrovia
Only seen one signed one since this thread started. Auction House in UK in January this year.
Jul 16, 2020
2020/7/16 22:20:13 (GMT) Greenwich Mean Time, London, Dublin, Lisbon, Casablanca, Monrovia
Ah, yes, #79. Well, there you go then; that's four copies, including one signed, just this year. Maybe this is a trend, as previously years used to pass without any surfacing...
Jul 16, 2020
2020/7/16 22:44:39 (GMT) Greenwich Mean Time, London, Dublin, Lisbon, Casablanca, Monrovia

Khamûl wrote:

Ah, yes, #79. Well, there you go then; that's four copies, including one signed, just this year. Maybe this is a trend, as previously years used to pass without any surfacing...

It could be. Also been 3 jacketed 1937/2nd Hobbits with complete jackets sub-£5K that I have seen so far this year. I think the mid-top end of the market is correcting, but that is just a hunch.
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