Rare Book Monthly

Articles - January - 2007 Issue

Comparing The Book Finding Sites


Vialibri allows you to see the prices of a seller's copy on different sites.

Bookcost does not state who or how many sites it searches, but appears to hit most of the majors and several others, perhaps more tilted toward new books. Single field search. Displays shipping costs. Not good for rare books. Link: www.bookcost.com

FindBookPrices is relatively new. Does not list where it searches. Appears tilted toward new books, but does search Alibris and Abe. Single field search. Displays shipping cost. Did not find very much. Link: findbookprices.com

BestBookBuys (BestWebBuys) searches 25 sites, including Abe, Alibris and other majors with a tilt toward newer books. Searches just one field at a time. Displays shipping cost and time, and unusually, for which states each site collects sales tax. Another one that misses the older books. Link: www.bestwebbuys.com

Any Book International searches 10 sites, with just three listed for old books – Alibris, ElephantBooks, and Half. However, they seem to show only dedicated search boxes for Alibris and Amazon. Not sure what is going on here. Link: www.anybook.com

AnyBook4Less searches 25 sites, including Amazon, Abe, B&N, Half, Wal Mart, Overstock and Chapters. One field search. A search first takes you to a page with details about the edition and customer reviews. A second click brings you to copies offered, including shipping costs and timing. Seems to find mostly new books. Missed a lot. Link: www.anybok4less.com

AKA Book is a relatively recent site searching 42 listings sites, including Abe, Alibris, Choose, B&N, Amazon, Half, eBay and lots of new and textbook sites. Can search either by keywords or author and title. Includes shipping costs. Separates new books from used. Did not find anything old. Link: www.akabook.com

All Discount Books claims 110 sites, but does not specify them. Appears to hit most major sites. One field at a time search. Shows shipping costs and times. Another one not targeted to the antiquarian. Was painfully slow at the time we tried it. Link: www.alldiscountbooks.net

The Cheapest Book claims 40 unstated stores. Amazon, Alibris, Overstock, Powell's and Blackwells are among them. Two search fields. Search first goes to a descriptive page, second click to see matches. Shows shipping. Finds mostly new books. Fast, but said some books were "only available at Amazon" that we knew were available elsewhere. Link: thecheapestbook.com

Get Cheap Books does not say how many sites, but reaches the usual subjects. One search field. First goes to page of data and Amazon reviews, second click to listings. Shows shipping. Not much old material. Link: www.getcheapbooks.com

Rare Book Monthly

  • <b>Bonhams, Jun 13 results:</b> Darwin, Charles. <i>On the Origin of Species.</i> Presentation Copy. Sold for $500,075.
    <b>Bonhams, Jun 13 results:</b> Darwin, Charles. Autograph Letter Signed, 3 pp, negotiating the 2nd American edition with Appleton. Sold for $21,325.
    <b>Bonhams, Jun 13 results:</b> Hemingway, Ernest. Autograph Letter Signed, 8 pp, Paris, 1924, to his father discussing Bullfighting, Stories, and his new baby. Sold for $25,075.
    <b>Bonhams, Jun 13 results:</b> Shakespeare, William. <i>Corialanus.</i> London, 1623. 1st printing [Extracted from the First Folio]. Sold for $50,075.
    <b>Bonhams, Jun 13 results:</b> Swift, Jonathan. <i>Gulliver's Travels.</i> London, 1726. 1st edition, Teerink's A edition, fine, large copy. Sold for $21,325.
    <b>Bonhams, Jun 13 results:</b> Fitzroy, Robert. Autograph Letter Signed to agent Thomas Stilwell, informing him of the progress of H.M.S. Beagle. Sold for $17,575.
    <center><b>Bonhams<br> Property from the Collection of Nicole and William R. Keck II</b>
    <b>Bonhams, Jun 13 results:</b> Shakespeare, William. <i>Sonnets.</i> 1901. 2 volumes. Printed on vellum and illuminated by Ross Turner, bound by Trautz-Bauzonnet. Sold for $13,825.
    <b>Bonhams, Jun 13 results:</b> Beardsley, Aubrey. <i>The Birth, Life, and Acts of King Arthur.</i> 1893-94. 2 volumes. Contemporary painted vellum gilt by Chivers. Sold for $5,325.
    <b>Bonhams, Jun 13 results:</b> Assisi, St. Francis. <i>The Canticle of Brother Sun.</i> Illuminated on vellum, for the Grolier Society. Sold for $7,575.
    <b>Bonhams, Jun 13 results:</b> Rackham, Arthur. <i>Peter Pan in Kensington Gardens.</i> 1/500 copies signed by Rackham. Sold for $4,825.
    <b>Bonhams, Jun 13 results:</b> Proust, Marcel. <i>Du coté de chez Swann.</i> 1st edition, 1st issue. Inscribed by Proust. Sold for $8,825.
  • <b>Swann Auction Galleries:</b> Ian Fleming, <i>Goldfinger,</i> first edition, inscribed to Sir Henry Cotton, MBE, London, 1959. Sold for $25,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries:</b> Joseph Brant, Mohawk Chief, ALS, writing after pledging support to King George III against American rebels, 1776. Sold for a record $35,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries:</b> Sonia Delaunay, <i>Ses Peintures</i> . . ., 20 pochoir plates, Paris, 1925. Sold for a record $13,750.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries:</b> Diana, Princess of Wales, 6 autograph letters signed to British <i>Vogue</i> editor, 1989-92. Sold for $10,400.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries:</b> Alexander Hamilton, ALS, as Secretary of the Treasury covering costs of the new U.S. Mint, 1793. Sold for $12,500.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries:</b> Benjamin Graham & David L. Dodd, <i>Security Analysis,</i> first edition, inscribed by Graham to a Wall Street trader, NY, 1934. Sold for $20,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries:</b> George Barbier & François-Louis Schmied, <i>Personnages de Comédie,</i> Paris, 1922. Sold for $9,375.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries:</b> Alphonse Mucha, <i>Ilsée, Princesse de Tripoli,</i> Paris, 1897. Sold for a record $13,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries:</b> Ralph Waldo Emerson, <i>The Dial,</i> first edition of the reconstituted issue, Emerson’s copy with inscriptions, Cincinnati, 1860. Sold for a record $3,250.

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