Jump to Main ContentJump to Primary Navigation
Top

How to make money from books

Investbookssepia.jpg

In a week where a first edition of Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice sold for a record £139,250, its clear books can be so much more than a great read. Rare book expert Clive Farahar reveals the secrets to investing in your bookshelf.

Buy the books you love

Book values fluctuate. Tolkien’s Lord of the Rings went through the roof after the film came out, with a set selling for as much as £25,000. But that market won’t last. So pleasure, enjoyment and enthusiasm for what you buy is the most important thing.

Start with 18th and 19th century classics

Authors from this period are incredibly reasonable; you can pick up a first edition Jane Austen for around £150. Try 19th century travellers like Livingston, Stanley, Parry and Cook or authors like George Elliot or Charles Dickens they're some of the cheapest books to invest in.

Consider childhood

People will always want classicslike Beatrix Potter, because it reminds them of their childhood. There was a 1902 first edition that I valued it at £25,000. And in American the hippy generation has now grown up, got rich and they’re buying beatnik authors like Jack Keurouac because it was part of their youth.

Condition is key

You want the book to be in as original condition as possible, so look carefully at the cover, the printed labels and the bindings. An original condition book may not be the prettiest on the bookshelf but it is the most rare, and therefore worth the most.

Do your research

Make yourself asknowledgeable about the market as possible. Look through eBay, browse online and talk to your friendly local book seller. If they are a member of the Antiquarian Booksellers Association, they’re obliged to give you the best advice that they can.

Our Top Spots for Discovering Book Bargains

Related

TravelWriter.jpg

How to be a travel writer

Writingevent.jpg

Events for aspiring writers

615x330_people_donohue_011010.jpg

Room without a view

Comments

More

This is how much the houses in Big Little Lies cost

Spoiler: they're VERY expensive.

by Hayley Spencer
23 Mar 2017

Scientists reveal why you need to stop flaking on plans with friends

Don't flake it 'til you make it

by Kayleigh Dray
23 Mar 2017

Revealed: the number one reason that women break up with their partner

The truth hurts

23 Mar 2017

Been zombied? There’s now a name for this confusing dating behaviour

It's time to talk about the zombies of the dating world...

23 Mar 2017

10 female anthems to share with your mum this Mother's Day

The most moving anthems about motherhood by our favourite female artists.

by Alice Vincent
23 Mar 2017

Londoners share messages of unity and defiance after Parliament attack

“Londoners will never be cowed by terrorism”

by Kayleigh Dray
23 Mar 2017

Games developers donate to girls gaming project after sexist trolling

“It can feel a little helpless to see this stuff and not feel there’s anything positive you can do”

by Amy Swales
22 Mar 2017

10 cocktail recipes inspired by iconic women authors

Intoxicating recipes and feminist literary history: a winning combination.

by Moya Crockett
22 Mar 2017

Footballer charged with murder of ex claims he's 'not a bad guy'

The brazen goalkeeper said 'mistakes happen in life'

22 Mar 2017

This psychologist posted a shopping selfie for an excellent reason

“Everyone around you absorbs every word you say about your body”

by Kayleigh Dray
22 Mar 2017