Rare Book Monthly

Articles - January - 2011 Issue

007 Values Still Growing - Bond for Booksellers & Collectors

Casinoroyaledust

Casino Royale dust jacket.

The person prescient enough to have spent 10/6 (give or take a $1 in today's money) in the spring of 1953 on a UK hardback first of Casino with an unclipped dust jacket and sock it away in pristine condition, today might well be asking $40,000 to $70,000, conceivably more if the book is signed by the author, his friends, or any of an ever growing list of male and female movie personalities who played the characters he created.

 

While Casino leads the monetary parade, the values of the volumes that followed are only slightly less eye-popping. Given that time seems only to have increased both value and demand it is well worth knowing a thing or two about these books, especially now, as the attics and cellars of the English speaking world empty out onto the Internet.

 

For the bookseller or collector interested in Bond a good place to start is the FIRSTS MAGAZINE November 1998 issue devoted to collecting Ian Fleming. This is a solid read with the lead article by Lee Biondi (who was at that time the manager of Heritage Books in Los Angeles, and has since gone on to head his own firm www.biondirarebooks.com).

 

Not only does Biondi set Fleming in a cultural and literary context, he also teams with fellow bookseller James M. Pickard www.jamesmpickard.com to produce a nifty descriptive bibliography picturing the UK & US firsts including all 14 titles and points as well as estimates of their 1998 market values. He also notes some of the variants and pictures the covers of many pirate editions. In 1998 he estimated a UK Casino 1st in fine condition at $15,000; Live and Let Die (first state with dj) $8,500 and right on down the line to a fine Octopussy UK 1st at $125.

 

Ten years later, in November 2008, Biondi updated his initial FIRSTS offering with a second bibliographic commentary noting that the Bond novels and short story collections have never been out of print and that 2003 marked the jubilee year for Fleming and his work. This event was celebrated with a critical symposium at the Lilly Library at the University of Indiana (the repository for Fleming's papers). In 2008 he added additional bibliographic points and substantially raised his estimates. His new valuations of Fleming's UK 1st editions started with Casino at $50,000, Live and Let Die at $32,500 and ended with Octopussy at $300.

 

For even more recent numbers here are a few 2009-2010 auction prices realized for a UK edition of Casino from the AE data base:

 

* Casino Royale signed and inscribed by Fleming $40,000 - Oct 2009 Heritage Auction

 

* Casino 1st June 2010 at Dominic Winter Book Auction £14,100 (Great Britain pounds)

 

* Casino 1st AUD$23,300 (Australian Dollars) 2009

 

Not quite as astronomical but still respectable are some selected eBay sales in November and December of 2010:

 

*Live & Let Die, Cape w/dj 1954, sold $3,000

 

*Goldfinger, UK 1st in dj signed by three Bond girls, 26 bids, $1,890

 

*Dr No 1958 1s/1st in unclipped dj $1,474 was best offer

 

*For Your Eyes only in a dj $309.28

 

Lesser works also found ready buyers:

 

* Taiwan pirate edition of Casino Royale with its distinctive harlequin dust jacket sold for $78.77 after 11 bids

 

* Too Hot to Handle the US Perma book paperback issue of Moonraker with a good girl art cover realized  $62.50 with seven eager bidders vying for the prize.

 

Rare Book Monthly

  • <b>19th Century Shop:</b> Charles Darwin on sexuality and the transmission of hereditary characteristics: Autograph Letter Signed to Lawson Tait. Down, 17 January [1877].
    <b>19th Century Shop:</b> MILTON, JOHN. <i>Paradise Lost. A Poem written in ten books.</i> London: 1667. A very rare example with the contemporary binding untouched and with a 1667 title page.
    <b>19th Century Shop:</b> Hamilton secures the ratification of the Constitution: <i>The Debates and Proceedings of the Convention of the State of New-York, assembled at Poughkeespsie, on the 17th June, 1788.</i>
    <b>19th Century Shop:</b> The social contract “Man is born free, and everywhere he is in chains”: ROUSSEAU, JEAN-JACQUES. <i>Principes du Droit Politique [Du Contract Social]</i>. Amsterdam: Michel Rey, 1762
    <b>19th Century Shop:</b> “The first English textbook on geometrical land-measurement and surveying”: BENESE, RICHARD. <i>This Boke Sheweth the Maner of Measurynge All Maner of Lande…</i>
  • <b>Swann Auction Galleries Apr 26:</b> Jacques-Émile Ruhlmann, wallpaper sample book, circa 1919. $15,000 to $25,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Apr 26:</b> Archive from a late office of the Breuer & Smith architectural team, New York, 1960-70s. $3,500 to $5,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Apr 26:</b> William Morris, <i>The Story of the Glittering Plain or the Land of Living Men,</i> illustrated by Walter Crane, Kelmscott Press, Hammersmith, 1894. $2,500 to $3,500.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Apr 26:</b> Gustave Doré, <i>La Sainte Bible selon la Vulgate,</i> Tours, 1866. $15,000 to $25,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Apr 26:</b> Gustav Klimt & Max Eisler, <i>Eine Nachlese,</i> complete set, Vienna, 1931. $15,000 to $25,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Apr 26:</b><br>Eric Allatini & Gerda Wegener, <i>Sur Talons Rouges,</i> with original watercolor by Wegener, Paris, 1929. $5,000 to $7,500.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Apr 26:</b><br>C.P. Cavafy, <i>Fourteen Poems,</i> illustrated & signed by David Hockney, London, 1966. $5,000 to $7,500.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Apr 26:</b> Jean Midolle, <i>Spécimen des Écritures Modernes...</i>, Strasbourg, 1834-35. $3,000 to $4,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Apr 26:</b><br>E.A. Seguy, <i>Floréal: Dessins & Coloris Nouveaux,</i> Paris, 1925. $3,000 to $4,000.
  • <b>Bonhams: Results from Fine Books and Manuscripts on March 9, 2018</b>
    <b>Bonhams, Mar. 9:</b> BEETHOVEN, LUDWIG VAN. Autograph Manuscript sketch-leaf part of the score of the Scottish Songs, "Sunset" Op. 108 no 2. [Vienna, February 1818]. Inscribed by Alexander Wheelock Thayer. SOLD for $131,250
    <b>Bonhams, Mar. 9:</b> Violin belonging to Albert Einstein, presented to him by Oscar H. Steger, 1933. SOLD for $516,500
    <b>Bonhams, Mar. 9:</b> EINSTEIN, ALBERT. Autograph Letter Signed ("Papa") to his son Hans Albert, discussing his involvement with the atomic bomb, September 2, 1945. SOLD for $106,250
    <b>Bonhams: Results from Fine Books and Manuscripts on March 9, 2018</b>
    <b>Bonhams, Mar. 9:</b> HAMILTON, ALEXANDER. Autograph Letter Signed, to Baron von Steuben, with extensive notes of Von Steuben's aide Benjamin Walker, June 12, 1780. SOLD for $16,250
    <b>Bonhams, Mar. 9:</b> NEWTON, ISAAC. Autograph Manuscript in Latin, being detailed instructions on making the philosopher's stone. 8 pp. 1790s. SOLD for $275,000
    <b>Bonhams, Mar. 9:</b> 1869 Inauguration Bible of President Ulysses S. Grant. SOLD for $118,750
  • <b>Doyle, April 25:</b> E.H. SHEPARD, Original drawing for A.A. Milne’s The House at Pooh Corner.<br>$40,000-60,000
    <b>Doyle, April 25:</b> BERNARD RATZER, Plan of the City of New York in North America, surveyed in the years 1766 & 1767. $80,000-100,000
    <b>Doyle, April 25:</b> THOMAS JEFFERSON, Autograph letter signed comparing Logan, Tecumseh, and Little Turtle to the Spartans. Monticello: 15 February 1821. $14,000-18,000
    <b>Doyle, April 25:</b> JOHN C. FREMONT, Narrative of the Exploring Expedition to the Rocky Mountains, in the Year 1842.. Abridged edition, the only one containing the folding map From the Sporting Library of Arnold “Jake” Johnson. $3,000-5,000
    <b>Doyle, April 25:</b> ZANE GREY, Album containing 94 large format photographs of Grey and party at Catalina Island, Arizona, and fishing in the Pacific. From the Sporting Library of Arnold “Jake” Johnson. $5,000-$8,000
    <b>Doyle, April 25:</b> WILLIAM COMBE, A History of Madeira ... illustrative of the Costumes, Manners, and Occupations of the Inhabitants. produced by Ackermann in 1821; From the Sporting Library of Jake Johnson. $2,000-$3,000
    <b>Doyle, April 25:</b> ERIC TAVERNER, Salmon Fishing... One of 275 copies signed by Taverner, published in 1931,From the Sporting Library of Jake Johnson. $2,000-$3,000
    <b>Doyle, April 25:</b> JOHN WHITEHEAD, Exploration of Mount Kina Balu, North Borneo. Whitehead reached the high point of Kinabalu in 1888. Part of a major group of travel books from the Sporting Library of Jake Johnson. $2,000-$3,000
    <b>Doyle, April 25:</b> JOHN LONG, Voyages and Travels of an Indian Interpreter and Trader, describing the Manners and Customs of the North American Indians... The first edition of 1791. $3,000-$5,000
    <b>Doyle, April 25:</b> SAMUEL BECKETT, Stirrings Still. This, Beckett’s last work of fiction with original lithographs by Le Brocquy, limited to 200 copies signed by the author and the artist. From the Estate of Howard Kaminsky.. $1,500-$2,500

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