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Annotated Reference Guide to Collectible Books

Rowling, J. K.

Collecting the Contemporaries: Is Harry Potter Valuable Yet?

When considering the ultra-contemporaries (the authors who have made their success in the last twenty years or so) it is always very tricky to judge how valuable or collectible a book will be. The authors’ success is so fresh, so modern that it can often be mistreated and spoilt by too much publicity, the pitfalls and perils of celebrity, and the vagaries of the economy. For this reason many book collectors will hesitate before we start listing the relative value of a hot new author as compared to a literary classic.

However, there is always the exception to every rule, and we are always glad to be proved wrong! JK Rowling is one such fine example. Her books -- The Harry Potter Series -- have been so immensely successful throughout the globe that they truly have changed the children’s literary scene for our generation. Her success has ensured her books a lasting legacy that will undoubtedly affect generations to come.

Are they valuable? Yes, but only in their proper first edition state, and doubly so with any authorial provenance attached (by which we mean inscriptions and signatures).

To detect whether your first edition Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone is valuable, you have to make absolutely sure that you are holding in your hands a first edition. It must first of all be printed no later than 1997 by Bloomsbury Publishing, and be in first hardcover format. Next, the printers edition marks (the line of numbers that the printers use to select which printing it is) should read down from 10 to 1, as in 10, 9, 8, 7, 6, 5, 4, 3, 2, 1. If it starts at 17, 16, and so on to 10, then it means that it is the 10th print run, and not the first. Open your copy to page 53, to the list of supplies that harry buys from the magical suppliers. It must have ‘1 wand’ listed twice!

So, if you satisfy all of these criteria, what is your first edition Harry Potter worth? Well, at auction it has recently been sold at between 3 to 4 thousand dollars. Incredible!

Rowling, J. K. Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone. Bloombury, London (1997). The publisher page credits Joanne Rowling ntains no space between r and 1 on Thomas Taylor 1997 in error

Rowling, J. K. Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets. Bloomsbury, London (1998). TRUE FIRST EDITION published in England. First Issue points including the full number line beginning with 1;

Rowling, J. K. Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets. Scholastic Press, New York (1998). First American edition, with full number line on copyright page: 1 3 5 7 9 10 8 6 4 2 8 9/9 0/0 01 02, followed by : Printed in the U.S.A. 23 followed by : First American Edition

Rowling, J. K. Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone. Ted Smart, London (1998).

Rowling, J. K. Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone. Arthur A. Levine Books, New York (1998). First Issue dustjacket with the $16.95 price printed to the top inside flap of the dustjacket; First State Issue Points: 1) ISBN 0-59035340-3 2) 309 pages 3) purple boards with diamond embossed/quilted pattern with red cloth spine 4) full number line 13579108642 8 9/9 0/0 01 02 5) Printed in the U. S. A. 23 First American Edition, October 1998 6) Dustjacket price $16.95 present 7) All gold lettering on the jacket cover is either raised and/or recessed 8) there is no number 1 on the spine of the book and dustjacket 9) softly textured dustjacket surface 10) the UPC bar code on the back of the dustjacket has a white/cream backing and the number 51695 (in black), above the smaller bar code located in the lower left hrner 11) the quote on the rear of the dustjacket is from The Guardian, London and reads Harry Potter could assume the near-legendary status as Roald Dahl's Charlie, of chocolate factory fame. 12) the initials JK (upper line) and Rowling (lower line) are printed in gold on the spine of the book and the jacket;

Rowling, J. K. Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets. Arthur A. Levine Books, New York (1999). American edition (number line: 10 9 8 7 6 5 4 3 2 1 9/9 0/0 1 2 3 4) in the correct first state binding (no embossed 2 on the spine) and in the correct first state dustwrapper ($17.95 price and lacking the 2 on the spine); Illustrated by Mary GrandPre;

Rowling, J. K. Harry Potter and the Chamber Of Secrets. Bloomsbury Publishing, Plc. (1999). 7 volumes; 500 Copies, errors are: 1. Accredited to Joanne Rowling (later this was changed to J K Rowling).2. Dropped text burnt on page 7.3,

Rowling, J. K. Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets. Bloomsbury. London (1999). 7 volumes; Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone; Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets; Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban; Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire; Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix; Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince; Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows; The first issue states 'Copyright Joanne Rowling' on the copyright page, whereas the second issue is amended to 'J.K Rowling'; The first issue also has a misaligned text block 'burnt (drop) so much' p.7, which is corrected in the subsequent issues; 500 Copies.

Rowling, J. K. Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban. Arthur A. Levine Books, New York (1999). First issue without the number 2 on the spine of the book or on the dustjacket,

Rowling, J. K. Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban. Bloomsbury, London (1999). first and second states: 150 copies of both states were printed;first issue states 'Copyright Joanne Rowling' on the copyright page, whereas the second issue is amended to 'J.K Rowling';first issue also has a misaligned text block 'burnt (drop) so much' p.7, which is corrected in the subsequent issues; 500 copies, errors are: 1. Accredited to Joanne Rowling (later this was changed to J K Rowling).2. Dropped text burnt on page 7.3.

Rowling, J. K. Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire. Arthur Levine/Scholastic Books, New York (2000). 25 special copies which features an original full page signed drawing of Harry Potter drawn in the book by Mary GrandPre; book won the Hugo Award

Rowling, J. K. Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire. Bloomsbury, London (2000). first issue (corrected in later printings): 503p. Dumbledore, come! spoken by Crouch (this was later corrected to Fudge); 579p. James Potter exits Voldemort's wand before Lily (the order was later reversed); 594p. The Imperius Curse, Moody said. (later changed to Crouch said).

Rowling, J. K. Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix. Bloomsbury, London (2003). Deluxe edition

Rowling, J. K. Harry Potter And The Order Of The Phoenix (SIGNED W/PROVENANCE). Arthur A. Levine Books, New York (2003). 1 03 04 05 06 07 number line; first American edition.

Rowling, J. K. Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince. Bloomsbury, London (2005). First UK deluxe edition

Rowling, J. K. Harry Potter And The Half-Blood Prince. Arthur A. Levine Books, New York (2005). Complete row of numbers to 1 on the copyright page. The deluxe edition includes a 32-page insert featuring near scale reproductions of Mary GrandPre's interior art, as well as full-color frontispiece art on special paper. The

Rowling, J. K. Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows. Arthur A. Levine Books, New York (2007). Authentication hologram

Rowling, J. K. Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows. Bloomsbury, London (2007). 7 volumes

Rowling, J. K. The Tales of Beedle the Bard. Children's High Level Group, London (2008). Authentication hologram; Special collector's edition

Rowling, J. K. The Casual Vacancy. Little Brown, London (2012). First UK edition; authentication hologram

Rowling, J. K. The Cuckoo's Calling. Little, Brown , New York (2013). 1500 copies; full number line, $26 price tag

Rowling, J. K. The Silkworm. Sphere, London (2013). Full number line