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eBay Seller: dogfark
Shirrif
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BUYER BEWARE

Let's talk a little bit about book descriptions...

The previous auction for this signed copy of The Silmarillion finished yesterday (25th November); the winning bid was £410, won by dogfark (Festival Art & Books). A day later we have it listed for more than double that price with the following description:

George Allen and Unwin, 1977 First edition. Near fine book and jacket. No flaws to mention. Rare for being signed by Christopher Tolkien. It was likely signed at a more recent event, not in 1977, but we can;t say. We will garranty its his signature with a COA, please ask. We have sold only a few Christopher Tolkien signed books as few come on the market. Now quite elderly and having left the Tolkien Estate as trustee, we doubt there will be many of his signed items coming on the market and his signature is likely to soar in value. It is appropriate to have his signature in this book, the first he edited and published on his father's behalf. Don't delay, this will sell fast as an awesome Xmas gift to a Tolkien fan or for yourself!

https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/J-R-R-Tolki ... a3bb46:g:scMAAOSwAHtaGvni

The previous seller was not a bookseller, enthusiastically describing the book as in "exceptional unread condition". However the description did go on to described how the DJ "has a very slight small tear at the top of spine"; something that is noticeable from the photos. The seller (evidently upon responding to enquires) further amended the listing adding...

The red in the wording Silmarillion on the spine of the dust cover has some slight fading when compared to the red of the wording on the front. No doubt this is due to light. Please email me if you would like to see an additional photo showing this.

The seller had already provided twelve photos in the listing.

The new auction for this signed copy, by dogfark, has only three photos to illustrate the condition to potential buyers. These images appear to be the photos taken by the previous seller. [EDIT: this would be in breach of eBay's "Images and text policy" (see here).] The book now has "No flaws to mention", that jacket tear & spine fade apparently too insignificant to warrant mentioning in the description.

For those interested dogfark has another signed Christopher Tolkien item available too:
https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/J-R-R-Tolki ... 2ee974:g:R04AAOSwU8hY7jLq

This item was bought off eBay in April for £99:
https://www.ebay.com/itm/Smith-Of-Woot ... f91992:g:iPEAAOSwj85YRuJN

BH

EDIT: I have edited some of my comments in light of the updates that have been made to the auction listing (27th November).

Posted on: 2017/11/26 10:59

(edited)
_________________
You drive a hard bargain – you can have it for £10 all-in – one consolation (for you) is that you do not have to hear the cries of my children, for bread...


Re: eBay Seller: dogfark
Home away from home
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He still can't spell, I see. And apart from his naff description and the rest; in my opinion he doesn't know Tolkien bibliography -

''It is appropriate to have his signature in this book, the first he edited and published on his father's behalf.''

The first book edited & published by Christopher containing JRR's work was his translations of Sir Gawain & the Green Knight, Pearl, and Sir Orfeo in 1975.

[Edited for clarity of personal opinion]

Posted on: 2017/11/26 13:34

(edited)


Re: eBay Seller: dogfark
Shirrif
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The 1946 Hobbit that he had for sale recently had an inscription on the fep that he failed to provide any pictures of (but he did state it was present). He isn't by any means the only seller to do this (leaving out photos of inscriptions), but I think professional sellers should clearly present all the warts. Some do, some don't. I buy from the sellers that do.

It is my personal opinion that he is undoubtedly one of those sellers that generally over-prices. He also sometimes makes claims of likely future value, which I think is inappropriate. No one can predict the future value of books. Again, he is not the only seller to do this, but that doesn't make it something I approve of. Books go up and down in value and it is anybody's guess what they will do in the future. In recent times they have been trending down.

Buyer beware, I guess. I'd personally never buy off any seller that doesn't offer me good value (the prices asked often simply don't correlate with what I believe to be market value), but it is up to any buyer to decide whether a seller is offering something that is good or bad value on a case by case basis.

[Edited for clarity of personal opinion]

Posted on: 2017/11/26 15:23

(edited)


Re: eBay Seller: dogfark
Shirrif
Joined:
2007/8/16 4:56
From Scotland
Group:
Shirefolk
Fellowship
Shirrif
Posts: 1806
Offline
Viewing the auction/listing today it's clear the seller has revised some of the comment:

There is no issue regarding what is a first edition book. The first American edition came a year later. There however two versions of the first edition dust jacket. One without a price on the flap, export edition and one with £4.95 the UK edition. The export edition was released first, now harder to find, though UK editions of all the title remain the most collected. Ideally you should have one of each.

I'm offering a choice of three dust jackets with the book as the fact it is signed is more important to the value than which jacket. The three choices are, 1) UK editions w/ £4.95 price. (main photo) Spine title red is slightly fade, jacket has some suffice scratches and a tiny tear to spine head (shown in the photo above). 2) Export edition, (shown on left in two book photo) no price, but with complete fading to spine colors, covers otherwise lovely. 3) A price clipped version with true spine colors and no wear anywhere. It would display the nicest in this dust jacket. (shown on right)

Order before December 1st and pay list price, I will let you have all three jackets versions! If you want the books also, shipping will be double due to the extra weight of three books.

It's nice to see the seller has decided to actually describe the condition of the DJ; maybe he read the criticism made here of the listing as it was originally worded? That's all this is, dogfark. Criticism.

Note: the first US edition did not come out "a year later". This is incorrect.

In respect to the "three dustjackets" option, my advice to any potential buyer would be to keep the original DJ. The bibliographical integrity of this signed edition is as important as the Christopher Tolkien signature itself. It makes no sense to swap the original "slightly faded" jacket with either an unpriced & faded jacket, or a price-clipped superior alternative.

BH

Posted on: 2017/11/27 13:55
_________________
You drive a hard bargain – you can have it for £10 all-in – one consolation (for you) is that you do not have to hear the cries of my children, for bread...


Re: eBay Seller: dogfark
Home away from home
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Even just a little light proofreading would go a long way also. For what it's worth, I would agree with the Buyer Beware comments... I've seen plenty of this seller's listings and never once can I remember seeing a fair price or an honest (or at least accurate) description.

Posted on: 2017/11/27 14:59



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