This copy of Charlie and the Chocolate Factory sold for $25,000
It’s time to dig out your old Roald Dahl books – prices for rare copies of Dahl’s classic children’s books are hitting new heights. Late last week a signed first edition of Charlie and the Chocolate Factory sold for $25,000 on the AbeBooks online marketplace.
The book is a first edition that had been signed and inscribed by the author with the words “For Jane and Alex with much love Roald Dahl October 1964.”
The bookseller was Raptis Rare Books located in Brattleboro, Vermont.
The inscription from Roald Dahl
Published in September 1964 by Knopf, just 10,000 copies of Charlie and the Chocolate Factory were published and they sold out within a few weeks.
This copy is by far the most expensive Roald Dahl book to sell via AbeBooks and probably the most expensive Dahl book to ever be sold. In March 2015, a signed first edition of Matilda sold for $5,000 through AbeBooks, and then a month later a signed first edition of Charlie and the Chocolate Factory sold for $7,500 indicating that Dahl is more popular than ever with high-end book collectors.
As always, condition plays a vital role in rare book pricing and the copy sold by Raptis Rare Books was in stunning condition considering its age and the fact that it is a children’s book.
AbeBooks has sold 31 Roald Dahl books priced $1,000 or more since 2002. The most expensive Charlie and the Chocolate Factory book currently available on AbeBooks is a signed first edition offered for $17,500. Raptis Rare Books is offering a signed first edition of James and the Giant Peach for $20,000 that is also inscribed to Jane and Alex.
Interest in Roald Dahl, who died in 1990, has not dimmed in recent years. A musical version of Matilda was launched in 2010 and is currently running in London’s West End and on Broadway in New York. In 2005, the Roald Dahl Museum and Story Centre opened in Great Missenden in Buckingshire – the village where Dahl lived and wrote for 36 years until his death. Also in 2005, Tim Burton released a movie version of Charlie and the Chocolate Factory starring Johnny Depp as Willy Wonka.
A memorable illustration from Charlie and the Chocolate Factory