[ModLib] 90's Hardback Price Guide

Darrell Johnson zebradlj at yahoo.com
Sun May 22 21:16:58 EDT 2011

Modern Library-ians,
For any of you who collect the ML series hardbacks that started in 1992 (75th Anniversary hardbacks) Bill Hornick and I are beginning a discusion of a possible price guide for them.  We would like to invite anyone who is interested in discussing how to get at reasonable pricing - given the market, to join us.
Cormack Mccarthy's Sutree was issued at $19.95 in 2002.  Today I saw an Ebay ad asking $300 for a first printing!  I saw another ad that did not specify a 1st printing asking $85.  This is not the only "90's Hardback" title that people are at least hoping to realize rather nice sums on.  So it is clear that at least some of these ML's are going to be collectible.  Ebay asking prices are not, of course, always a good indicator of actual value.  It seems no one is expecting the Maltese Falcon listed at $1150 or so to sell at (anywhere near?) that price.  And, in general, when ads like either of these go away, we won't know if the book got sold or the ad was simply pulled (since they aren't auctions but buy-it-now's).  
I built a price guide into my Modern Library Complete database.  The 1917-1970 era books I simply used Henry's 2000 price guide amounts so I would have that reference in my laptop when I took it to book stores.  For the 1992-present Hardbacks I have a crude (initial) system of a 1st VG/VG being valued at the first printing issue price with 1st VG/nj at half that price; non-first VG/VG a bit more than half of a 1st VG/VG and a non-first VG/nj about 1/4 a 1st printing VG/VG.  I sent an Excel version of this list to Bill.  If you are interested in participating in this I can send you one as well.
Additionally, anyone interested in creating, or updating, pricing for any other ML sets, including 1917-1970, I can run filtered sets of the database's Price Guide for any set (or subset) you can imagine.  It is fairly clear that no one is considering printing a new price guide, but a collaberative set of data in a database-convertable-to-Excel format could easily be shared among collaborators if we simply have periodic discusssions about pricing trends for most books and periodic specific discussions for "hotter" titles. Or the results of a collaberative effort could be periodically updated on Modernlib.com if Scot would allow it.
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