New old dustjackets

Posted on 14 September 2009. Filed under: Interesting websites | Tags: , |

There are some interesting websites out there. Some are more interesting than others and I’m going to point you in the direction of one such site and let you make up your own mind. This url has been sitting here looking at me for some time, A New Look At Old Books. I was not certain what angle to look at with this one. In this blog the author is examining his bookshelf one by one and giving us his/her views on them. This particular book that the author is looking at is called The Printer’s Devil by Clemence Dane and Helen Simpson. I’ve taken the liberty of searching for it on ABEBooks and have only found one copy for sale for $US850.

Okay, so I’ve established it’s almost certainly a rare and expensive book so what is so special about the blog? This particular page is about being able to buy new dustjackets for old books. You know how dustjackets get mangled and destroyed and later thrown out, well you can now buy a dustjacket for it. It’s going to be a brand new dustjacket and make your book (and therefore bookshelf) look very smart, but is it what you want? Well, it’s not what I want. If I buy an old book I don’t add a new dustjacket to it as that doesn’t increase the monetary value and it doesn’t increase the emotional value. For me the emotional value is in owning the book, in being able to read it whenever I like, and with cookbooks, seeing previous owner’s recipes written inside and seeing the food stains.

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