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Monday, November 21st 2011

3:03 PM

Jane Austen was Poisoned!

Was she really poisoned?

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Sunday, October 23rd 2011

10:38 PM

Books to Film



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Thursday, October 20th 2011

7:57 PM

Lost Arthur Conan Doyle Novel Hits Shelves

Something's in the air lately.  Lost manuscripts are turning up all over the place.  Last week, we profiled a soon-to-be-published James M. Cain manuscript that was missing for many years.  And the literary finds continue this week with the publication of Arthur Conan Doyle's long lost first novel, The Narrative of John Smith.

Conan Doyle wrote the novel when he was 23 years old, working as a doctor in Portsmouth.  Doctor salaries in 1883 being slightly lower than doctor salaries in 2011, Conan Doyle looked for a way to supplement his income to support his ailing father and fund his younger brother's education.  His short stories met with early success, however Conan Doyle grew frustrated with the Victorian practice of omitting the author's name in magazines.  (A practice of equal frustration to collectors today).  So Conan Doyle wrote a manuscript, The Narrative of John Smith, about a man stricken with gout and confined to his room for a week.  He promptly sent the manuscript off by post and the postal service promptly lost it.

It never turned up again.

Conan Doyle rewrote the manuscript from memory, however he did not again attempt to publish it.  This second manuscript went missing for many years after his death, turning up again in a collection of Conan Doyle's private papers which were sold at auction at Sotheby's in 2004.  The British Library purchased the collection for almost £1m. 

The British Library published the novel this week, with the consent of the Conan Doyle literary estate, and it is available to purchase in the UK.  An American edition will follow next month.

Now, what long lost manuscript will surface next week?

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Tuesday, September 27th 2011

10:42 AM

Bookman's blog

One of the great bookman's blogs is Bookman's Log, from ABAA Member Greg Gibson of Ten Pound Island Books. Want to know what a rare bookseller's life is like? Greg will tell you his story.

Goto:   http://bookmanslog.blogspot.com


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Tuesday, September 20th 2011

10:47 AM

John Gilkey Update: Open Letter to Dealers in the Collectibles Trades

ABAA security chair John Waite has forwarded this Gilkey update/request from Inspector Jeff Levin of the SFPD. Please feel free to forward and/or repost.

Earlier this month convicted fraudster and thief John Charles Gilkey of California was arrested for a parole violation stemming from a series of incidents in San Francisco late last year. Now that he has been re-apprehended, he will be brought up again on charges either later this month or next in San Francisco.

A career criminal, Mr. Gilkey has a long record of defrauding rare book and autograph dealers and dealers in other collectibles, with the use of stolen credit card numbers or with bad checks. His first arrest goes back more than a decade to the 1990s when he was brought up on charges for passing bad checks. He was arrested and jailed for credit card fraud in 2003, then released on parole less than two years later. In autumn 2010 he was arrested again after threatening to burn down a San Francisco print gallery after the manager declined a sale. Mr. Gilkey posted a bail bond for $75,000.00 and subsequently disappeared.

There is ample evidence that between last November and his arrest this month, John Charles Gilkey continued to defraud a number of dealers in collectibles, including a Maryland comic book dealer. San Francisco Police have asked members of the collectibles trade to please forward to them any new information concerning fraudulent activity by Mr. Gilkey. His new bail and eventual sentencing largely will be influenced by the number of new crimes that can proved he has committed since he skipped bail.

Mr. Gilkey is reported to have a storage unit containing rare books, autographs, prints, maps, stamps, comic books, Hollywood and film memorabilia, and coins. Many of these objects may have been obtained through fraud. However, police cannot obtain a search warrant of the storage unit until they provide a judge with a list of items that they are seeking. For that reason, it is imperative for dealers in all fields to come forward and provide police with information about any losses since the beginning of 2011, especially if John Charles Gilkey is known to have been the involved in the transaction. If the collectibles trades can provide police with a targeted list of stolen goods, then police will have a legal basis on which to execute a search warrant. 

If you have information or questions, please contact:

Inspector Jeff Levin

SFPD Arson Unit


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Sunday, July 17th 2011

10:06 PM

The Codex Calixtinus Manuscript Stolen.

The Codex Calixtinus Manuscript Stolen.
It is one of the most important texts of the Middle Ages. It has incalculable value. It's the Codex Calixtinus. It's been taken from a Spanish cathedral.
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Wednesday, June 29th 2011

9:16 AM

Harry Potter on ebooks! At Long last!

A New site called Pottermore is selling ebooks of Harry Potter , for full detalils goto:

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Tuesday, June 14th 2011

2:36 PM

The Maltese Falcon by Dashlell Hammett

I am currently reading The Maltese Falcon by Dashlell Hammett. The Main character is Sam Spade and is a cool dude. I think I'll rent or buy the original movie of the same name staring Humphrey Bogart. Made in the 40's or 50's.

The book I/m reading is a beautiful Franklin Library editio. the covers are faux leather and have a large unique prssing of a falcon on both side. All edges are guilded silver , it has pictures of the movie in the forward section. A really handsome book in any library. I'll be putting it up for auction after reading it at ebay. If you want to make an offer before hand send to jpmcsale@sbcglobal.net

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Monday, June 13th 2011

2:52 PM

Winner of 2011 Orange Prize for Fiction

Téa Obreht Wins 2011 Orange Prize for Fiction for The Tiger’s Wife

The Orange Prize for Fiction has been awarded:

Serbian/American author Téa Obreht has won the 2011 Orange Prize for Fiction with her debut novel The Tiger’s Wife. At 25, Obreht is the youngest-ever author to take the Prize.

Celebrating its sixteenth anniversary this year, the Prize celebrates excellence, originality and accessibility in women’s writing from throughout the world.

At an awards ceremony at the Royal Festival Hall, Southbank Centre, London, hosted by Orange Prize for Fiction Co-Founder and Honorary Director, Kate Mosse, the 2011 Chair of Judges, Bettany Hughes, presented the author with the £30,000 prize and the ‘Bessie’, a limited edition bronze figurine.

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