How to Date Undated Books

Book Collecting

A reader asks, “I have some really old books, but there is no copyright date or publishing date. What is the best way to determine the age of the book?”
…{read more}

How to Determine a Book’s Initial Press Run

print run - LisaClarke / Flickr

Recently I’ve received a couple of emails from visitors to this site, who wanted to know how to determine how large a given published book’s initial print run (also known …{read more}

Book Bindings:
An Illustrated Guide for Collectors


For this article, we’re going to focus upon the various types of book bindings, and some things that effect their condition.

Primary Types of Book Bindings

Broadly, there are two …{read more}

About Author Signatures, and Signed Books

Confessions of a Writer

There are many kinds of signatures which can be found on books. Below we’ll discuss them, and how each affects the value of a book. You can click on any …{read more}

Where to Sign a Book

James Mitchell-Flickr

Over the past month, I’ve received emails from two newly-published authors who have upcoming book signing events. They both wanted to know, “Where should I sign the book?”

By far …{read more}

Review – Guide to the Identification of First Editions

Bill McBride’s Pocket Guide to the Identification of First Editions details the methods over 4,600 different publishers use to identify their first editions. For many years McBride has worked tirelessly …{read more}

Review – Points of Issue: A Compendium of Points of Issue of Books by 19th-20th Century Authors

Bill McBride’s other book, A Guide to the Identification of First Editions, shares the basic methods that individual publishers use for distinguishing first editions from later printings.

Points of …{read more}

On Collecting Literary Ephemera

1957 handbill - Amram, Lamantia & Hart / courtesy T.Walden

The term ephemera refers to items, usually printed on paper, which are meant to have a very short life span. These may include tickets, bookmarks, advertisements, event posters, programs, menus, …{read more}

First Edition Condition


Book Condition & Grading

Book collectors generally want books that are in as close to their original condition as possible. Books that appear new & unread (or nearly so), are …{read more}

Should you write a gift inscription in a first edition or collectible book?

copyright Lusi /

Books make thoughtful, personal gifts. Often, the giver would like to write a short note to the recipient inside the book; this is called a gift inscription.

It’s worth noting …{read more}