Sunday, December 12, 2010

The Case of the Extra Crumbling Wall DJ Disaster

Nancy Drew collectors know that the first printing of #22, The Clue in the Crumbling Wall, is very scarce indeed! The first printing dust jacket advertises Judy Bolton books on the back--most printings following this for awhile just advertised Beverly Gray. One way to help tell you have a first printing among other factors. In the 13+ years I've been on eBay, not too many of these have sold--sometimes in worse shape--and usually for high amounts.

Recently one was listed on eBay and I decided to "bite the bullet" and snap it up. One of the reasons especially that I wanted this book was that the spine of the dust jacket was in really nice shape other than some minor chipping along the top--but all the lettering of the title was present and that is usually a factor in my bidding--I want it to look good while on the shelf and the spine is what you see on the shelf. The front panel had some issues but wasn't too bad overall.

Considering the fact that I spent as MUCH as I did on the book, you would think the seller would therefore package the book well so it makes it in good shape. I paid for priority mail especially because of this. And the Post Office does give out FREE priority mail boxes. FREE!

My seller, in an apparent bid to save on costs used the flat rate envelope--very thin paper-board envelope--to ship my book--only ships for 4.95 that way. And so they stuck my book inside a padded mailer without enclosing it in some kind of bag, plastic wrap, etc.. to protect the dust jacket, and then placed that in the paper envelope. With a sinking feeling, I opened the mailer to get out the book and immediately noticed huge chips along the top of the dust jacket's spine--pieces that I found lying in the bottom of the padded mailer :-(

See the original photo from the Crumbling Wall auction:

Now see what it looks like after poor packaging/shipping--the pieces laying next to it that I found in the envelope:

Most of the top of the dust jacket is now gone as well as part of the word "THE." And below--you can see how this carries over to the front panel now:

And the front panel of the dust jacket shown here in the auction;

Now has another big chuck missing taking out part of Bess's leg and the bushes under "Keene":

To say that I'm disappointed is an understatement! The dust jacket out of a book/dj combination is worth about at least 80% + of the value of the set. And in this case, where the dust jacket is very scarce, I'd say about 90% of the value at minimum for this book. So now my investment due to these chips has devalued significantly. I e-mailed the seller yesterday about the problem and haven't heard back. And I'm not a happy camper...Buyer beware!


FINAL UPDATE: I've removed earlier updates, the seller finally communicated with me and made this right, which I appreciated. He apparently thought I was one of many eBay scammers out there and until he realized I wasn't, was not willing to work very easily with me.

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