Tuesday, December 1, 2015

Nancy Drew Clue in the Diary First and Rick Brant Lot Comments

Back in 2014, some first printing Nancy Drew books sold on eBay, detailed in this post.  One of the books was the first printing of The Clue in the Diary with dust jacket.  The purchaser paid $997.56 for the book and put it back up for sale at $3,999.99.  I stated in my blog post, "I'm not sure that I have ever seen the first printing of The Clue in the Diary sell for above $2,500, so I am skeptical as to whether the seller can get that much."

I kept track of the seller's attempts to sell the book, since I did not think the book could be sold for more than $2,500.  It took over a year, but the seller was finally about to sell the book at $1,499.99.  I'm glad that the seller did not take a loss on the book, but with eBay and PayPal fees, it was a very close call.

Back in early February, I bought the complete set of Rick Brant books in the Grosset and Dunlap picture cover edition.  I wrote the following on Facebook on February 7, the day I received the books.
I was the person who won the auction for the expensive complete set of Rick Brant books on eBay nearly one week ago.  I enjoyed the Rick Brant books enough that I would very much like to have copies of the final books.  Now I have #1-23 in the original Grosset and Dunlap edition.  I don't have #24.  I hope to sell all the extras for enough to take my cost for #22 and #23 down to what I consider a reasonable level (albeit not cheap, obviously).

This was a risky transaction, and I am relieved to have the books on hand.  The seller has some negatives, and that was a concern.  I cringed when I saw the box today.  Notice that you can actually see the books through the tape across the middle of the box.  The books were not wrapped, so that tape could have ended up against the books if the package had been damaged.  I also cringed when I opened the box.  Looking at the picture of the box after I opened it, the book at the top left is #23 and the book at the far right is #22.  The books were in there a bit tight. The books are all fine. **Big sigh of relief.**
This is the photo I took of the outside of the box where the books can be seen in the gap between the flaps.

That worried me.  The next photo is what I saw when I opened up the box.  #23 is at the top left and #22 at the far right.  Those are the two valuable books, and of course, they were placed in positions that put them in greater danger of being damaged.  Somehow it always happens that way.

Here are the books after they were removed from the package.  All books arrived undamaged.

I paid $835.05 for this set of books, and that is quite a bit more than I wanted to pay.  I raised my bid amount near the end after I decided that I would be foolish not to go for it.  The goal was to get Danger Below! and The Deadly Dutchman at less than what I would expect to pay by purchasing each individually.  I planned to sell all the extras.  After the extras were sold, then my remaining cost would be what those two books ultimately cost me.

At around the time I bought this set, the original edition of The Deadly Dutchman sold for $305.00.  A reprint of Danger Below! sold for $200.00.  The original edition of Danger Below! is worth more than the reprint.  More recently, two near complete sets of Rick Brant books sold for far less than what I paid for my set, but each set contained just one of the two scarce books.

Of course, if I had bid on either of those two lots, they would have closed at higher prices, possibly much higher.  One can never know for sure what would have happened.  But then, I wouldn't have ended up with both scarce books.

So, how did I do on my lot?  I have now sold all of the extras except for one.  #22 and #23 ended up costing me a total of $369.00, or $184.50 each.  My goal was to pay less than $250.00 per book and hopefully less than $200.00 per book.  I succeeded.

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