The Man Booker prize is awarded each year for the best original full-length novel, written in the English language, by a citizen of either the Commonwealth of Nations or the Republic of Ireland.

Wining the Booker, which is considered to be one of the most prestigious literary prizes in the world, has become a sure fire way for an author to increase their print run and in many cases creates a collectors market for early editions. Here is a list of the 20 most expensive sales for Booker Prize winners.

To celebrate this year’s 40th anniversary of the prize, the Man Booker committee is selecting The Best of the Bookers from the past 41 winners, twice the prize was shared. Instead of presenting our readers with a shortlist, we want AbeBooks users to select their favorite Booker winner from the entire catalogue of past winners.

Vote for your favorite Booker winner now. We will post the results of the survey in June. To get you started, here is a selection of our favorites.

The Early Years

1969 - Something to Answer For

by PH Newby (1918-1997)

Something to Answer For by PH Newby

Townrow, a fund distributor, is contacted by the widow of an old friend living in Cairo. Believing her husband to have been murdered she asks Townrow to come to Egypt.

Fast fact: PH Newby was given the Order of the British Empire for his work as managing director of the BBC.

First edition copies being offered for up to $1,427

1970 - The Elected Member

Bernice Rubens (1928-2004)

The Elected Member by Bernice Rubens

Child prodigy and the apple of his parents' eyes becomes a drug addict, confined to his bedroom at the mercy of his hallucinations.

Fast fact: Her 1962 novel, Madame Sousatzka was made into a film in 1988, with Shabana Azmi and Shirley MacLaine.

First edition copies being offered for up to $2,043

1971 - In a Free State

VS Naipaul (1932-Present)

In a Free State by VS Naipaul

Comprised of two novellas and a short-story, the book explores the theme of alienation.

Fast fact: Naipaul was awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature in 2001 and knighted by Queen Elizabeth II in 1990.

First edition copies being offered for up to $2,957

1972 – G

John Berger (1926-Present)

G by John Berger

Set in pre-First World War Europe, the novel’s protagonist Casanova-like lover of women gradually comes to political consciousness after misadventures across the continent.

Fast fact: When accepting the Booker award Berger made a point of donating half his cash prize to the Black Panther Party in Britain.

First edition copies being offered for up to $1,735

The Eighties

1980 – Rites of Passage

William Golding (1911 – 1993)

Rites of Passage by William Golding

In the cabin of an ancient, stinking warship bound for Australia, a man writes a journal to entertain his godfather back in England. With wit and disdain he records mounting tensions on board, as an obsequious clergyman attracts the animosity of the tyrannical captain and surly crew.

Fast fact: Golding served in WWII and participated in the invasion of Normandy on D-Day.

First edition copies being offered for up to $1,450

1981 - Midnight’s Children

Salman Rushdie (1947 – Present)

Midnight’s Children by Salman Rushdie

1,001 children born at the midnight hour of India's independence each of them endowed with an extraordinary talent the protagonist finds himself mysteriously 'handcuffed to history' by the coincidence.

Fast fact: In 1999, Rushdie had an operation to correct a tendon condition that was making it increasingly difficult for him to open his eyes.

First edition copies being offered for up to $4,573

1983 - Life & Times of Michael K

JM Coetzee (1940 – Present)

Life & Times of Michael K by JM Coetzee

In an imagined near future of a South Africa torn by civil war, a simple gardener named Michael K sets out to take his mother back to her rural home. On the way she dies, leaving him alone in an anarchic world of brutal roving armies. Imprisoned, Michael is unable to bear confinement and escapes, determined to live with dignity.

Fast fact: He is known as reclusive and eschews publicity to such an extent that he did not collect either of his two Booker Prizes in person.

First edition copies being offered for up to $1,750

1985 - The Bone People

Keri Hulme (1947 – Present)

The Bone People by Keri Hulme

The story of Kerewin, a despairing part-Maori artist who is convinced that her solitary life is the only way to face the world.

Fast fact: Hulme is a patron of the Republican Movement of Aotearoa New Zealand, which ironically would make her ineligible to win any future Bookers should they succeed.

First edition copies being offered for up to $1,000

The Nineties

1992 - The English Patient

Michael Ondaatje (1943 – Present)

The English Patient by Michael Ondaatje

Tells the story of the entanglement of four damaged lives in an Italian monastery as the Second World War ends.

Fast fact: After winning the Booker Ondaatje’s story was turned into a film which won nine Academy Awards, including Best Picture.

First edition copies being offered for up to $1,013

1993 - Paddy Clarke Ha Ha Ha

Roddy Doyle (1958 – Present)

Paddy Clarke Ha Ha Ha by Roddy Doyle

The book describes the world of 10-year-old Paddy Clarke, growing up in Barrytown, north Dublin. From fun and adventure on the streets, boredom in the classroom to increasing isolation at home, "Paddy Clarke Ha Ha Ha" is the story of a boy who sees everything but understands less and less.

Fast fact: Doyle’s 1987 novel The Commitments was not only turned into a movie but a band with some of the film’s actors, and they still tour.

First edition copies being offered for up to $382

1994 - How late it was, how late

James Kelman (1946 – Present)

How late it was, how late by James Kelman

Sammy's had a bad week - his wallet's gone, along with his new shoes, he's been arrested then beaten up by the police and thrown out on the street - and he's just gone blind. He remembers a row with his girlfriend, but she seems to have disappeared. Things aren't looking too good for Sammy and his problems have hardly begun.

Fast fact: One of the judges choosing the 1994 Booker, Rabbi Julia Neuberger, threatened to resign if Kelman won, and upon the book was granted the prize she stormed off the panel, saying, "Frankly, it's crap."

First edition copies being offered for up to $202

1997 - The God of Small Things

Arundhati Roy (1961 – Present)

The God of Small Things by Arundhati Roy

The God of Small Things is nominally the story of young twins Rahel and Estha and the rest of their family.

Fast fact: The God of Small Things is the only novel written by Roy. She has since devoted herself solely to nonfiction and politics, publishing two more collections of essays, as well as working for social causes, although in early 2007 she announced that she would start work on a second novel.

First edition copies being offered for up to $1,950

Recent Years

2000 – The Blind Assassin

Margaret Atwood (1939 – Present)

The Blind Assassin by Margaret Atwood

Iris Griffen takes up her pen to record the secret history of her family, the romantic melodrama of its decline and fall between the two World Wars.

Fast fact: Atwood invented the "LongPen" billed as "the world's first long distance signing device.

First edition copies being offered for up to $200

2001 - True History of the Kelly Gang

Peter Carey (1943 – Present)

True History of the Kelly Gang by Peter Carey

A historical novel based around the life of Australia's most infamous bushranger Ned Kelly.

Fast fact: The novel is written in a distinctive vernacular style, with little in the way of punctuation or grammar.

First edition copies being offered for up to $550

2002 - Life of Pi

Yann Martel (1963 – Present)

Life of Pi by Yann Martel

The plot concerns the oceanic wanderings of a lost boy, the young and eager Piscine Patel of the title (Pi). After a colourful and loving upbringing in gorgeously-hued India, the Muslim-Christian-animistic Pi sets off for a fresh start in Canada.

Fast fact: Yann Martel currently sends one book every two weeks to the Prime Minister of Canada. He chronicles the project on his blog

First edition copies being offered for up to $3,300

2005 - The Sea

John Banville (1945 – Present)

The Sea by John Banville

The story is told by Max Morden, a self-aware, retired art historian attempting to reconcile himself to the deaths of those whom he loved as a child and as an adult.

Fast fact: Banville has been a regular contributor to The New York Review of Books since 1990.

First edition copies being offered for up to $750