Monday, January 14, 2013

Do You Collect Signed Books?

Short post this week. Let's talk signed books.

I went through the shelves and pulled some of the signed books that Sandra and I have picked up over the years to share.

[All of the images linked to are collected at this Pinterest board.]

I've picked up a couple at store signings. Here's signed copies of The Shotgun Rule by Charlie Huston and Generation Loss by Elizabeth Hand.

I've been fortunate enough to win some contests over the years. Here's signed copies of The Six by Stuart Neville and The Lighthouse Keepers by Adrian McKinty.

Bouchercon and other book festivals and conventions are a great place to get signed books from your favorite authors. Here's signed copies of Violent Spring by Gary Phillips and Blood of Paradise by David Corbett.

Some of my favorite signed books are the ones found in unlikely places or in used or remaindered bins. I found this signed copy of Homicide by David Simon at Goodwill; This copy of The Sweet Forever by George Pelecanos at Big Lots; This copy of The Winter of Frankie Machine by Don Winslow remaindered at Borders.

I've picked up a few signed, numbered, limited editions over the years too. Here's signed copies of Frayed by Tom Piccirilli, The Stormwatcher by Graham Joyce, Mad Dogs by Brian Hodge, and Laughin' Boy by Bradley Denton.

Here's some others from our collection. Interrogations by Jon Jordan, The Right Madness by James Crumley, Fleshmarket Close by Ian Rankin, Priest by Ken Bruen. 

It's always nice when an author does something a little extra like this signed copy of Cold Granite by Stuart MacBride.

I like to get signed copies of the Snubnose Press books whenever possible. Here's a signed copy of Choice Cuts by Joe Clifford.

OK, let's talk prized posessions and favorites. I have a few to share: Renderings by James Sallis; Windward Passage by Jim Nisbet; The Plots With Guns anthology (look at all of those signatures).

Final two. The two I prize the most. The first is a signed copy of Giveadamn Brown by Robert Deane Pharr. Pharr is a forgotten writer and this, his final novel, is one of my favorite books by him. Because he's so unknown I don't think there are that many signed books by him out there. Plus I love the personal info on the page too. This was deal at $9.

The second is a signed, first edition hardback of Blaze Starr's memoir. Usually if you see a copy of this book in the store it is the movie tie-in version with Paul Newman on the cover.  These days you don't see the original cover that much so if you see one grab it. For many reasons, including this being  in part a Baltimore book, this is my favorite signed book. I actually met Blaze Starr a few years ago. She was selling jewelry at a kiosk in a mall and was just as charming as can be.

[All of the images linked to are collected at this Pinterest board.]

Do you collect signed books? 
Do you shelf them differently? 
Which of your signed books do you treasure the most?
Dare I ask, What is the most you've paid for a signed book?
Have you turned down buying one but regretted it later?

Currently Reading: Submissions and the new Dennis Lehane.

Currently Listening: O Be Joyful by Shovels and Rope.


Eric Beetner said...

I have a ton of signed books. I don't shelve them any differently. I can't say one is any more treasured than any other, really. I do get personalized inscriptions, not just a signature whenever possible. Kills the resale value, but I don't intent to sell any of them.
I will admit to paying a lot for a few of my signed Joe Lansdale books like God of The Razor was $75 I think, but they are out of print versions and not just bought through eBay or something but directly from Joe so that means more somehow. and they're signed Joe Lansdale books for crying out loud!
Biggest regret, I missed a chance to get Ray Bradbury to sign books. It was before I started collecting them and it was a thing where I had to go into a cocktail party at a film festival to do it and it all seemed like a pain at the time. Major miss on my part.
And okay, maybe a very special book is my copy of Cameron Crowe's biography of Billy Wilder signed by both Crowe and Billy Wilder only months before his death. As a major film geek, that one is special in a different way.

pattinase (abbott) said...

You know what is sad. When you see signed books at a flea market or a used bookstore. Especially if they are signed very personally. Either the book owner is dead or the writer is dead to the book owner.
Liked signed baseball cards, they don't mean much to me unless I know the writer.

Anonymous-9 said...

Yes, I love signed books. I don't shelve them differently because I only keep precious books and I know where they all are at any one time. A decade ago, I gave 1500 books away to a university. Now my collection is back up another 200 and I weed it routinely.