Rare Book Monthly

Articles - January - 2008 Issue

Rare Book Review Awards for 2007 Announced

The Rare Book Review announces its awards for 2007.


By Michael Stillman

Rare Book Review, the magazine of the rare and antiquarian book trade, recently announced the winners of their inaugural Rare Book Review Awards. Winners were selected by a panel of experts, industry leaders, visitors at the ABA Chelsea Book Fair, and readers of the magazine. If you see a slight tilt toward British entrants, that's because the Review is headquartered in London, and the Chelsea book fair was, after all, held in Chelsea (but not Chelsea, Massachusetts). Indeed, when categories are described as "favourites," you can be confident that there is something of a British bent here, so Americans who did not win should not feel slighted. Nevertheless, you will see many names from the former colonies here too, and they surely are "favorites" as well. So let's take a look at who won the first Rare Book Review Awards.

Favourite Online Booktrading Service of the Year.

You know this one is going to stir controversy. There probably isn't anyone who could win peaceably in this field, so contentious has the subject become among booksellers. As the award givers noted, the winner had to survive a strike by the ABA against increased fees. Nevertheless, when the votes were tallied, the award went to AbeBooks. As the Rare Book Review editors noted, "...for sheer accessibility, accuracy and breadth of content our readers cannot fault it." AbeBooks CEO Hannes Blum commented, "This is a tremendous honor. Thanks to all the readers who voted for us." Special mention was also given to Biblion, Antiqbook, and the Americana Exchange.

The Book World's Highlight of the Year.

This honor went to the Macclesfield Sale at Sotheby's. Actually, this sale from the library of the Earls of Macclesfield has been going on for several years. An item from this sale, a previously unknown illuminated 14th century manuscript psalter, topped The AE 500 as the most expensive book/document at auction in 2004 when it sold for over $4 million. Part 9 of the sale at Sotheby's London in March 2007 took in almost $8 million more, running the total to some $40 million. Runner up was the strange sale of the Bishop of Truro's library, grabbed up in a private sale by a dealer for less money than he sold some of the individual pieces in it. Also highly noted was the Frank Streeter sale at Christie's New York, which took in over $16 million, the Hattesley sale at Bonham's Oxford, the private sale of Dennistoun's Collection of Financial Work by Bernard Shapero, and the ADAA sale. Also noted was the opening of Bloomsbury Auctions' office in New York, and the closing of the venerable Heritage Book Shop in Los Angeles.

Rare Book Monthly

  • Sotheby’s
    Modern First Editions
    Available for Immediate Purchase
    Sotheby’s, Available Now: Winston Churchill. The Second World War. Set of First-Edition Volumes. 6,000 USD
    Sotheby’s, Available Now: A.A. Milne, Ernest H. Shepard. A Collection of The Pooh Books. Set of First-Editions. 18,600 USD
    Sotheby’s, Available Now: Salvador Dalí, Lewis Carroll. Alice's Adventures in Wonderland. Finely Bound and Signed Limited Edition. 15,000 USD
    Sotheby’s
    Modern First Editions
    Available for Immediate Purchase
    Sotheby’s, Available Now: Ian Fleming. Live and Let Die. First Edition. 9,500 USD
    Sotheby’s, Available Now: J.K. Rowling. Harry Potter Series. Finely Bound First Printing Set of Complete Series. 5,650 USD
    Sotheby’s, Available Now: Ernest Hemingway. A Farewell to Arms. First Edition, First Printing. 4,200 USD
  • Bid on iGavelAuctions.com: Heller, Joseph, Closing Time, Advance Readers Copy of Uncorrected Proof with a letter from Heller on his personal stationary
    Bid on iGavelAuctions.com: Gates, Bill, How to Avoid a Climate Disaster, N Y: Knopf, 2021; first edition, with a handwritten note from Bill Gates
    Bid on iGavelAuctions.com: Heller, Joseph, Catch-22, New York: Simon & Schuster, 1961, first edition, first printing, first issue dust jacket, inscribed on the front end paper by Heller
    Bid on iGavelAuctions.com: Heller, Joseph, Something Happened, New York: Alfred A. Knopf, 1974, first edition, inscribed on the front end paper by Heller
    Bid on iGavelAuctions.com: Austen, Jane, Northanger Abbey and Persuasion, London: John Murray, 1818, in four volumes
  • Manuscript Masterpieces from the Schøyen Collection
    London auction, 11 June
    BROWSE NOW
    Christie’s, Explore now: The Holkham Hebrew Bible. In Hebrew, decorated manuscript on vellum [Toledo, 2nd quarter 13th century]. £1,500,000–3,000,000
    Christie’s, Explore now: The Crosby-Schøyen Codex. In Coptic, manuscript on papyrus [Upper Egypt, middle 3rd century / 4th century]. £2,000,000–3,000,000
    Christie’s, Explore now: The Geraardsbergen Bible. In Latin, illuminated manuscript on vellum [Southern Netherlands, late 12th century]. £700,000–1,000,000
    Christie’s, Explore now : Jean de Courcy (fl. 1420). The Chronique de la Bouquechardiere. In French, illuminated manuscript on vellum [Paris, c.1480]. £200,000–300,000
    Christie’s, Explore now: The ‘Catherine de Medici’ Hours. In Latin and French, illuminated manuscript on vellum [Paris, c.1485]. £120,000–180,000
  • Forum Auctions
    Fine Books, Manuscripts and Works on Paper
    30th May 2024
    Forum, May 30: Potter (Beatrix). Complete set of four original illustrations for the nursery rhyme, 'This pig went to market', 1890s. £60,000 to £80,000.
    Forum, May 30: Dante Alighieri.- Lactantius (Lucius Coelius Firmianus). Opera, second edition, Rome, 1468. £40,000 to £60,000.
    Forum, May 30: Distilling.- Brunschwig (Hieronymus). Liber de arte Distillandi de Compositis, first edition of the so-called 'Grosses Destillierbuch', Strassburg, 1512. £22,000 to £28,000.
    Forum, May 30: Eliot (T.S.), W. H. Auden, Ted Hughes, Philip Larkin, Robert Lowell, Seamus Heaney, Ted Hughes, & others. A Personal Anthology for Eric Walter White, 60 autograph poems. £20,000 to £30,000.
    Forum, May 30: Cornerstone of French Enlightenment Philosophy.- Helvetius (Claude Adrien). De l'Esprit, true first issue "A" of the suppressed first edition, Paris, 1758. £20,000 to £30,000.
    Forum Auctions
    Fine Books, Manuscripts and Works on Paper
    30th May 2024
    Forum, May 30: Szyk (Arthur). The Haggadah, one of 125 copies, this out-of-series, Beaconsfield Press, 1940. £15,000 to £20,000.
    Forum, May 30: Fleming (Ian). Casino Royale, first edition, first impression, 1953. £15,000 to £20,000.
    Forum, May 30: Japan.- Ryusui (Katsuma). Umi no Sachi [Wealth of the Sea], 2 vol., Tokyo, 1762. £8,000 to £12,000.
    Forum, May 30: Computing.- Operating and maintenance manual for the BINAC binary automatic computer built for Northrop Aircraft Corporation 1949, Philadelphia, 1949. £8,000 to £12,000.
    Forum, May 30: Burmese School (probably circa 1870s). Folding manuscript, or parabaik, from the Court Workshop at the Royal Court at Manadaly, Burma, [c.1870s]. £8,000 to £12,000.

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