An acim book is one which had a profound effect when printed and which continues to exert influence; important books are in large part desirable because collectors – affected by the book in some way – want a copy.”
These “important books” cross over into Collectible, Rare and Antiquarian books.
Take for example 1984. Truly this was an important book as it was about the future and people wanted a copy. But, it is also rare if you are looking for a first edition, first printing, with a dust jacket and fine condition..
If a book becomes an important, like 1984, then it will probably become at first a collectible, because it was not old when it was first printed, but when it has stood the test of time, it will become rare. But hundreds of years from this moment, it will be considered antiquarian.
Everybody has there favorite book. Mine is Noble House by James Clavell. Set in Hong Kong it is the story of two Tai-pan’s and seven days in the business life of this city built by pirates. For me, I wanted a first edition. Through the years I have picked up my share of first editions. But, they are getting difficult to find in good condition. Now does this mean that it is going to be worth thousands of dollars? Well, not right now, but down the road someday, there going to go up in price. Everyday, books are lost to floods, fire and garage sells. They are not printing anymore first editions, so all of Clavell’s books could be worth something in the future. Already I priced any of eshis early hard bounds at $25.00. More for his first book.
If enough people also like this book then it might become collectible.
Those people who have a private library, from one shelf to twenty or more bookcases all have important books. It might be said that an important book is one that you don’t want to get rid of just yet. I have about thirty boxes I will be clutching on my deathbed.
When you go into a bookstore, you actually cherry pick the store. You take out the books you can afford and really want to own and read.
I have been in situations where people who are selling off their collections but won’t go through the books if somebody else has gone through them. They think the bt has been cherry picked by other dealers.
But everybody has different tastes. Everybody collects or sells different types of books. Yes, we all have Stephen King and Anne Rice. But we don’t necessarily have the same books at the same time. There is room for everybody.
Would I pass up a pile of books because a dealer or a book scout had already gone through them. Nope, I will be there in spades to see what I can dig up. The flip of the coin is, someday they will be following me. I have left thrift stores when new books are being shelved and there is a scout working the shelves and checking each row as the books appear. They were there first and I know he is looking for what he considers “important books” and I leap frog to my next target area to see what I can find. Important books – something for everybody, and that’s the beauty of books.