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The dictator who collected rare books

Earlier this week the New York Times reported on the book collection that belonged to Chile’s infamous former dictator General Augusto Pinochet, who was responsible for thousands of deaths and disappearances, and widespread torture. Pinochet used public money to build a vast personal library of Latin America’s literature during his years of rule. The library […]

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Who will buy the Bay Psalm Book?

Perhaps we should rephrase this question? Who has $15 million to $30 million and wants to own this particular book? It’s a narrow field of potential bidders. This copy of the Bay Psalm Book, printed in 1640, will be auctioned by Sotheby’s on November 26. It is set to become the world’s most expensive printed […]

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Browse Rare Books at the 2013 Toronto International Antiquarian Book Fair

AbeBooks is again proud to sponsor the 2013 Toronto International Antiquarian Book Fair, which begins on Friday, November 8th. Some examples of the kinds of treasures you might see are pictured below. A special treat on opening night, for both bibiophiles and film buffs, will be Canadian filmmaker David Cronenberg’s introduction as the Antiquarian Booksellers’ Association of […]

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Rare spell books sell for $13,865 but beware of the curse

Just days before All Hallow’s Eve, two handwritten, spiral-bound books of spells have sold on AbeBooks.com for $13,865, but the buyer risks being cursed if they are not a believer in witchcraft.  The opening page of the first of the two grimoires (that’s a magical textbook) is inscribed with the haunting warning: “To those not […]

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Booksellers predict Bay Psalm auction will be landmark moment for rare books

Two of America’s leading rare book experts predict that the forthcoming auction of a Bay Psalm Book will break new ground in the world of collectible books. Allan Stypeck, owner of Second Story Books in Rockville, Maryland, has seen and appraised many of America’s finest collections of rare books and historical material. He believes Sotheby’s […]

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Top 10 most expensive books ever sold

With lots of excitement surrounding the Bay Psalm Book that’s coming up for auction at Sotheby’s, this is a good time to step aside and consider the most expensive books that have ever been sold. By saying books, we are including documents and manuscripts, and not just objects published on a press. I would be […]

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Buzz building for Bay Psalm Book auction

Buzz is building for the November sale of an ultra-rare Bay Psalm Book. The book, predicted to become the world’s most expensive printed book when it is auctioned by Sotheby’s, has been touring the United States. It’s interesting to see regional media giving considerable space to the subject of rare books.  David Redden, Worldwide Chairman […]

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The rock star of rare books goes on tour

The book that could become the world’s most expensive book is going on tour. Rather like a rock star except the gigs are in libraries rather than stadiums. However, the Bay Psalm Book actually does have celebrity status within the rare book world and Sotheby’s will auction a very rare copy on November 26. In […]

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Andy Warhol’s Index: The 1967 Pop-up Book for Hipsters

American pop artist Andy Warhol‘s glory days were the 1960s. Warhol was firmly ensconced in the New York art scene and had a decade of exhibitions and acclaim under his belt. Art-wise, he had already worked his way from shoe advertisements and silkscreened record album covers up to what he became best-known for: the iconic, […]

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Books a documentary of Larry McMurtry’s 2012 auction

In the summer of 2012 Larry McMurtry auctioned off about 300,000 volumes from the warehouses of his bookshop Booked Up.  It was the rare book event of the summer and two film makers were there to catch the action.  They have put together a short trailer to promote the film they hope to make if […]

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