12 December 2007

Hunger and Love and the Secondhand Book Market

I noticed this description of a secondhand copy of Lionel Britton's Hunger and Love on Amazon.com for $123, and imagine that the fictional secondhand bookshop assistant Arthur Phelps (as well as Britton himself, who worked for many years in a secondhand bookshop) would have been amused by it:

'1931 Harper & Brothers Publishers (New York & London) unjacketed hardcover 1st edition. Faded burgundy cloth spine showing 3/4" onto the front and back of the case. The front and back sides of the case are of silver paper, which is badly scarred. The spine is very loose, with the front of the case almost separated from the book block. Interior and outer pages are tanned from age. It looks like a little beetle or something started to drill through the 1st 50 pages or so, at the bottom front corner. Text pages are in nice shape, other than the tanning.'

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