Waugh Among Top Sellers on AbeBooks

The Victoria, British Columbia, paper Times Colonist has published an interview of Richard Davies, a spokesman for the internet bookseller AbeBooks (which I believe originally was called ABE, standing for “Advanced Book Exchange”, but now has become a word unto itself). The company, now owned by Amazon, was founded in Victoria in 1996, and its operations are still based there, with a branch in Dusseldorf, Germany. The interview ranges over the history of significant sales on AbeBook’s website. The discussion of important sales in the last year includes a signed copy of one of Waugh’s novels:

This year’s most-expensive list includes Selectarum Stirpium Americanarum Historia by Nikolaus Joseph von Jacquin, which came in at No. 2 after selling for $25,679 US. A first edition of Charles Dickens’ Great Expectations was third on the list after selling for $25,000 US. Other notables were a set of the complete works of Oscar Wilde that sold for $16,500 US, a signed volume of Evelyn Waugh’s A Handful of Dust that sold for $16,450 US, a signed copy of Harper Lee’s To Kill a Mockingbird that sold for $16,000 US, a set of F. Scott Fitzgerald first editions that sold for $15,096 US and a copy of the children’s classic, The Velveteen Rabbit by Margery Williams, that sold for $14,500 US, which included a five-page letter from Williams to a family friend.

The top seller this year was a US first edition of Alice in Wonderland at $36,000. The highest-priced item ever sold on AbeBooks was an Italian ornithology book which fetched $191,000 in 2015.

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