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Collecting Highlights Archives Past issues of the Collecting Highlights column for Anne McCaffrey Fans. Posts are open for reply, so feel free to add a comment about what you own or would like to!

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Old Mar 7 2009, 09:42 AM   #1
Hans
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Default Collecting Highlight (75) - Decision at Doona 1970 UK first edition hardcover

Like some of the other early books by Anne McCaffrey "Decision at Doona" was first published as a paperback, in this case as a Ballantine paperback in April 1969. So, we have here one of the first Anne McCaffrey books and only preceded as a novel by Restoree and Dragonflight. In the UK this was Anne's third published hardcover book.

The UK first edition hardback was published by Rapp & Whiting of London on May 7, 1970 and its original price was 1 pound 40 p. It would have been a good investment because nowadays you rarely see a copy in good condition sold for less than a great many times that price.
Currently (early 2009) there are a few copies for sale at Amazon, varying from 150 to about 300 pounds (210 to 420 dollars), which I must admit is overpricing this nice little volume. The only copy currently on eBay is also priced at 150 pounds (c. $210). Prices to be found on Bookfinder.com start lower but still start at a respectable 100 euro (110 pounds/155 dollars). After that they go up in price to a -- IMHO -- rather silly 562 euro (711 dollars/505 pounds) for a copy in a fine dustjacket but with a slight corner bump It is possible to get them cheaper but probably not on the internet. You're best shot is a second hand bookstore, preferably one in which they know its old and worth something but don't realise what it could really sell for...

You will undoubtedly understand my amazement when I bid on a copy not so long that went up on Australian eBay for a mere 25 of their dollars... so, about 12 euro/11 pounds/15 dollars.
Was there a catch? It didn't seem like it. It was in very good shape, no spine lean, no ex library (!), no other bad spots and not even price clipped. Maybe the postage? After enquiry it turned out that postage to Europe would be as much as the price of the book. The seller was amazed I enquired and wrote that I must be a pretty dedicated fan to pay all that. I smiled when I read her mail but of course didn't reply that I thought postage was very reasonable and if the book stayed on the projected price I would be over the moon I actually didn't expected to win the bid.
In a few days however, I was over the moon. There hadn't even been other bidders! And I was now the owner of this very collectible Anne McCaffrey book for a "pittance" of 50 AUS dollars ($30 or 22 pounds) including postage . Yes, sometimes you get lucky but to compensate I have probably payed a little too much at times too And don't somebody reply that I have repeatedly said I only collect Pern...



The book is bound in orange reinforced paper with silver the title, author name and pubisher logo in silver stamped on the spine and the publisher name stamped in silver on the front cover. There is no dat on the title page but "First published in Britian 1970" on the copyright page. The actual publication date is 7 May 1970. The dustjacket design is by Lawrence Edwards (I wonder is this might be a name used by Les Edwards; I must ask him that sometime).



This book is, of course, (re)printed in many different editions, and in both soft- and hardback, in the English language and in others. But that is not the subject of this collecting highlight.

The book's dedication reads:

"To Todd Johnson - of course!"

about which Todd himself writes [Dragonholder, page 2] "I am the person who, aged twelve, writhed with anticipated teenaged taunts when his mother suggested dedicationg Decision at Doona 'To my darling son, Todd'. We settled on "To Todd Johnson - of course!."
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Old Mar 7 2009, 11:47 AM   #2
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Default Re: Collecting Highlight (75) - Decision at Doona 1970 UK first edition hardcover

Very interesting highlight Hans!! I hadn't realized Decision at Doona was first published in paperback.

Congrats on winning such a great find!!
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Old Mar 7 2009, 01:56 PM   #3
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Default Re: Collecting Highlight (75) - Decision at Doona 1970 UK first edition hardcover

There are at least 3 artists called Laurence Edwards (one of them (a sculptor) trained at Lowestoft with my youngest brother) and it's not him.

There's also an oil colour landscape painter but from the look of his work it's not him either.

The third works in a variety of media and is based in Memphis. His on-line gallery has a gap between 1952 and 1977. From his style he just might be the guilty party.
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Old Mar 7 2009, 09:13 PM   #4
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Default Re: Collecting Highlight (75) - Decision at Doona 1970 UK first edition hardcover

Very nicely done Hans...congratulations...I don't have this edition, although I do greatly enjoy this story. I am very envious of your of you wonderful find.
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Old Mar 7 2009, 09:35 PM   #5
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Default Re: Collecting Highlight (75) - Decision at Doona 1970 UK first edition hardcover

I would like to know what the cover represents. I am always intrigued by what an artist is thinking when they come up with a cover idea. Nice highlight, Hans!!
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Old Mar 11 2009, 05:03 AM   #6
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Default Re: Collecting Highlight (75) - Decision at Doona 1970 UK first edition hardcover

Definitely a nice buy! I think yours is nicer than mine (as well as being cheaper!) but I can't tell until I have internet again. Mine was an ebay purchase too. I suppose that I was just lucky.
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Old Jan 24 2010, 08:03 PM   #7
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Default Re: Collecting Highlight (75) - Decision at Doona 1970 UK first edition hardcover

Quote:
Originally Posted by unicorntig View Post
Very interesting highlight Hans!! I hadn't realized Decision at Doona was first published in paperback. <sinp> I have a copy somewere around here.

Congrats on winning such a great find!!
I think I've read them out of order, but that way it go sometime, nice find Hans
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Old Jan 1 2011, 09:50 AM   #8
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Default Re: Collecting Highlight (75) - Decision at Doona 1970 UK first edition hardcover

Just taking some time today to browse some posts I haven't looked at and even though this one is a little older it caught my eye.

I have this exact book. I didn't think twice about it before because of the fact that it was published first in paperback.

The hardcover and dust jacket are just like the picture Hans provided. 1970 priced at 1.40p with "To Todd Johnson-of course" on the 2nd page. The dust jacket has a tear that was taped on the inside at the top near the binding but otherwise in decent condition. I don't have details about where I picked this one up (I normally do that for my rare finds) so I am sure it was at one of the used book stores where they didn't know what they had a few years ago.

Hmmmmmmmmmmm......you just never know what you have......thank you Hans!
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