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Introducing Collections: A new way of shopping for collectibles

We’re excited to announce that AbeBooks.com has launched a new method of shopping for collectibles – including art, ephemera and books – that combines the expertise of sellers around the world with the ability to discover hundreds of diverse, eclectic and often surprising items in a matter of seconds. Collections is a new highly visual […]

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Why would a book on urban planning sell for $3,000?

Jane Jacobs published The Death and Life of Great American Cities in 1961. A signed first edition just sold for $3,000 on AbeBooks. The book is as relevant today as it was at the start of the 1960s. It is a damning assessment of America’s urban planning of the 1950s. Jacobs blamed planners for the […]

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George Washington and the “She Ass” letter

George Washington may have been the first president of the United States, a founding father and the military commander who led his country to freedom from British rule, but he also had to run a large estate on the banks of the Potomac River. Mount Vernon was a plantation house that had been owned by […]

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Jean Batten: The Greta Garbo of the Skies

Today’s Google doodle features Jean Batten. Well, who was she? Jean Batten  (1909-1982) was a pioneering female New Zealand aviator and one of the most famous Kiwis of the 20th century. She made the first-ever solo flight from England to New Zealand in 1936 and was glamorous enough to be the subject of a musical […]

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Early edition of Alice in Wonderland sells for $36,000

A rare early copy of Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland has sold for $36,000/£27,500 on the AbeBooks marketplace. Only 22 copies of the true first edition are in existence after Lewis Carroll withdrew the entire print run of 2,000 copies. One such copy came up for auction earlier this summer and was expected to sell for […]

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Classic children’s fiction: 5 reasons to read Elizabeth George Speare’s Sign of the Beaver

Last week’s bestselling book on AbeBooks was The Sign of the Beaver by Elizabeth George Speare. It’s good to see a revival in interest for this wonderful children’s historical novel. It was published in 1983 and remains one of the author’s best known books. The novel describes the adventures of 12-year-old American settler Matt James Halloway […]

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A little piece of Texas history sells for $6,180

A letter from Sam Houston, written when he was president of the Republic of Texas, has sold for $6,180 on AbeBooks.com. The letter, dated April 15, 1844, was one of the most expensive sales on our marketplace last month, Texas was an independent republic from 1836 to 1846 before joining the United States, and Houston […]

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The origins of The New Yorker’s dandy mascot

And here is the very first issue of The New Yorker, published on February 21, 1925. Our friends at Appledore Books just listed this copy for sale on AbeBooks priced at $2,500. For collectors of ephemera, this is a highly prized item – a little piece of magazine and journalism history. The famous cover illustration […]

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The world’s toughest librarian

“Detective 359” might not mean much to most people but to comic fans those words signify the true introduction Batgirl in 1967. Batgirl had appeared in print earlier in the 1960s. However, Detective Comics #359 is the famous issue that marks her appearance as a key superhero depicted as the daughter of Gotham City police […]

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What does scaramouche mean?

Ever wondered what Freddie Mercury and Queen were singing about in Bohemian Rhapsody when you hear ‘Scaramouche, Scaramouche. Will you do the fandango?’ I thought exactly that when I saw AbeBooks had recently sold a 1921 first edition of Scaramouche by Rafael Sabatini for $3,000. What does scaramouche mean? Or rather, who was Scaramouche? Scaramouche […]

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