Rare Book Monthly

Articles - January - 2007 Issue

BookFinder Lists Top 10 Used and Out of Print Books for 2006

Mad

What is commonly called the "Madonna Sex Book" is BookFinder's most sought after title.


By Michael Stillman

Internet book finding website BookFinder has released its top 10 list of the most sought after used and out of print books for 2006. Being a site where buyers can search many bookselling websites at once for used and old books, BookFinder knows exactly which books searchers want. What emerges is an unusual collection. There are no great classics of literature or notable works of history, but there is self-help, pop interest, a book related to a successful film, and -- surprise, surprise -- sex. The one thing these books have in common is they are hard to find. That, undoubtedly, is why they are so heavily searched. They are not readily available, and where they can be found, the prices are quite high for books of this sort. Now, as to why these books are so sought after, we'll let you reach your own conclusions. For the most part, they seem to lie in that netherland, popular enough to have a devoted following, but not quite popular enough to reprint. Now, here we go, and with a thanks to BookFinder for compiling this interesting list.

10. The list starts with a very hard to find obscurity, One Way Up, a story about helicopter development by John Straubel, published by the Hiller Aircraft Company in 1964.

9. Once a Runner, the 1978 cult classic by John L. Parker that has been praised by many of the great distance runners. A lot of people must be long-distance runners, at least in their dreams.

8. The Secret of Perfect Living, a re-discovered 1963 self-help obscurity by James Mangan, shows how focusing on words can help you achieve everything you desire, or something like that.

7. The Lion's Paw, an out of print children's adventure story about a search for a lucky seashell by Robb White.

6. The Principles of Knitting, a 1988 book by June Hemmons Hiatt which will tell you everything you want to know about needlework, and perhaps a lot more.

5. Treasury of Great Recipes by Mary and Vincent Price, published in 1964. Vincent Price was the great horror movie actor, making you wonder whether these recipes are horrific or good for poisoning people (actually, Price was an accomplished cook and gourmand too).

4. Man in Black, a 1975 autobiography by legendary country singer Johnny Cash, whose life story was made into a film this past year.

3. Touch Me Again, a 1978 collection of poetry from weight loss, skin care, jewelry, food, apparel, and anything else she can sell guru and one-time "Three's Company" star Suzanne Sommers.

2. Football Scouting Methods, a 1963 book by longtime Navy Assistant Football Coach Steve Belichick, who died shortly before 2006 began. One person who undoubtedly learned from this book is his son, three-time Super Bowl winning New England coach Bill Belichick.

1. Sex, a 1992 book by Madonna, BookFinder describes as a "perennial favorite." This book, filled with photographs that could be called either art or pornography, depending on your point of view, was published to accompany her 1992 CD "Erotica." The controversial item has not been republished since, leaving used copies the only source for this strange classic from the ultimate pop queen of music, film, and now books.

Rare Book Monthly

  • <b>Bonhams, Oct. 23:</b> SMITH, CHRISTOPHER WEBB. 1793-1871. <i>Indian Ornithology.</i> [Patna, India]: 1828. $50,000 to $80,000.
    <b>Bonhams, Oct. 23:</b> DUPRÉ, LOUIS. 1789-1837. <i>Voyage à Athènes et à Constantinople, ou Collection de portraits, vues et costumes grecs et ottomans.</i> Paris: Dondey-Dupré, 1825. $60,000 to $90,000.
    <b>Bonhams, Oct. 23:</b> ADAMS, JOHN. Autograph Letter Signed ("J Adams"), [to Dr. Perkins?] while recovering from his small pox inoculation, [late-April, 1764]. $30,000 to $50,000.
    <b>Bonhams, Oct. 23:</b> AUSTEN, JANE. Autograph Letter Signed ("J. Austen"), to her sister Cassandra, 4 pp, "Thursday – after dinner," [September 16, 1813,] Henrietta St. $80,000 to $120,000.
    <b>Bonhams, Oct. 23:</b> AUDUBON, JOHN JAMES. 1785-1851. <i>The Birds of America, from Drawings Made in the United States and Their Territories.</i> New York & Philadelphia: J.J. Audubon & J.B. Chevalier, 1840-1844. $20,000 to $30,000.
    <b>Bonhams, Oct. 23:</b> DODWELL, EDWARD. 1767-1832. <i>Views in Greece.</i> London: Rodwell and Martin, 1821. $20,000 to $30,000.
    <b>Bonhams, Oct. 23:</b> JAMES, JESSE. Autograph Letter Signed ("Jesse W. James"), to Mr. Flood demanding Flood retract spurious accusations, 3 pp, June 5, 1875. $200,000 to $300,000.
  • <b>Swann Auction Galleries Sep 26:</b> Textile of the Great White Fleet, with portraits of Theodore Roosevelt, Rear Admiral Robley D. Evans & successor Charles Stillman Sperry, 1908. $3,000 to $4,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Sep 26:</b> William J. Stone, <i>Declaration of Independence,</i> Force printing, 1833. $15,000 to $25,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Sep 26:</b> Shugart family papers including documentation of the Underground Railroad, 63 items, 1838-81. $30,000 to $40,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Sep 26:</b> Records of the Dickinson & Shrewsbury salt works, over 2000 items, with extensive slave labor correspondence, legal records & receipts, bulk 1820-1865. $80,000 to $120,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Sep 26:</b> Gloria Steinem, typescript for her speech <i>Living the Revolution,</i> with related letters and documents, 1941-77. $5,000 to $7,500.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Sep 26:</b> <i>Liberty Triumphant or the Downfall of Oppression,</i> depicting the aftermath of the Boston Tea Party, c. 1774. $12,000 to $18,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Sep 26:</b> Juan Eusebio Nieremberg, <i>Historia naturae, maxime peregrinae, libris XVI distincta,</i> Antwerp, 1635. $6,000 to $9,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Sep 26:</b> Antonio de Mayorga, manuscript map of Mexico City, 1779. $6,000 to $9,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Sep 26:</b> Thomas L. McKenney & James Hall, <i>History of the Indian Tribes of North America,</i> first edition, 3 volumes, Philadelphia, 1842-44. $25,000 to $35,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Sep 26:</b> Samuel Walker, diary of the entire first cruise of the USS Kineo, a gunboat on the Mississippi, 1854-69. $10,000 to $15,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Sep 26:</b> Scrapbook on early Stanford football, with letters from Walter Camp, 1893-95 & 1931. $8,000 to $12,000.
  • <b>Lark Mason Associates, Aug 8-27:</b> Roberts, David. Twenty Lithographs of the Holy Land, 19th Century. $2,000 to $4,000.
    <b>Lark Mason Associates, Aug 8-27:</b> Declaration by the Reps. of the United Colonies of N.A. 1775. $8,000 to $12,000.
    <b>Lark Mason Associates, Aug 8-27:</b> Composer Jerome Kern personal Letters, Albums and Other. $15,000 to $25,000.
    <b>Lark Mason Associates, Aug 8-27:</b> Paine, Thomas. <i>Common Sense,</i> London 1776. $8,000 to $12,000.
    <b>Lark Mason Associates, Aug 8-27:</b> Stowe, Harriet Beecher. <i>Uncle Tom’s Cabin,</i> Cleveland 1852. $4,000 to $6,000.
    <b>Lark Mason Associates, Aug 8-27:</b> Hobbes, Thomas. <i>Leviathan,</i> 3rd edition, London 1651. $2,000 to $3,000.
    <b>Lark Mason Associates, Aug 8-27:</b> Anno Regni Georgii III. Intolerable Acts and other Bills, 1774. $15,000 to $20,000.
    <b>Lark Mason Associates, Aug 8-27:</b> Wilberforce, William. An Abstract of the Evidence, 5 Letters, and two books. $6,000 to $9,000.
    <b>Lark Mason Associates, Aug 8-27:</b> Nightingale, Florence. Notes on Nursing and Signed Letters, ca. 1860 $4,000 to $6,000.
    <b>Lark Mason Associates, Aug 8-27:</b> Tolstov, Leo. <i>War and Peace,</i> 5 volumes, 1886. $3,000 to $5,000.
    <b>Lark Mason Associates, Aug 8-27:</b> Dickinson, John. Letters from a Farmer in Pennsylvania, 1768. $1,500 to $2,500.
    <b>Lark Mason Associates, Aug 8-27:</b> Twain, Mark. <i>Tom Sawyer,</i> 1877 [and] <i>Huckleberry Finn,</i> 1885. $4,000 to $6,000.

Article Search

Archived Articles

Ask Questions