Wednesday, October 05, 2011

Nancy Drew Q & A #1

I thought I'd start sharing some of the e-mails I get at my website and my replies as a learning tool for new collectors. Here's one such letter...

Letter From Tracie:

Hi, My name is Tracie, and I saw the awesome feature in Country Living magazine, which I subscribe to. Your book collection in the magazine was wonderful. I'd never heard of the game and really enjoyed the article. (I wish the article was a little longer, but I did enjoy looking through your website for more information, and your website is fantastic). I am not a collector, but I did come across a book I'm a little curious about on my own. I grew up with Nancy Drew and loved her. :)

I have book #36, The Secret of the Golden Pavilion. I have no idea if it's worth anything or not, but of course I'm curious. I think I paid a quarter for it in Goodwill, so it's not something I've invested money in one way or the other, and it was just to read it for fun. I hoped you might be able to answer the question of value if possible. :) It didn't have a jacket, the cover was just as you see it in the photos. Someone did write in it in places--a couple's name, address, and phone number are inside it on one of the white pages. Plus someone doodled in it a little and used a pen to color in hair in places and made little check marks on it in a couple places. And it is dirty and has a couple spots, but the cover is on pretty well and it's very readable as it is. They didn't doodle on the text or anything itself, so the story is still very readable. (It makes me nuts when people draw and write in books anyway--I almost didn't get it, but when I realized they hadn't drawn on the story itself I bought it).

The copyright date said 1959, and the page inside the book with the titles lists a different title as being the last one as the back cover, which also lists books. That confused me. On the page in the front of the book, it lists Clue of the Dancing Puppet as last, but the hard back cover lists The Mystery of the Fire Dragon as last. I have no idea what that might mean as far as that goes. I was curious about my book as soon as I saw the article and was led to your website.

It doesn't mention anywhere in it about printings or editions, and it was published by Grosset and Dunlap, it says on the spine. I hope my pictures are okay; my digital camera is somewhere in a stored box in our house (from moving) and I only had my webcam available. Sorry about that and if things look a little fuzzy in the photos. Thank you for taking time to read my email. I figured it was worth asking you about, and congratulations on having your collection in the magazine and being interviewed about it. :) That must have been fun for you. :)

Thanks again for any information or feedback you may have, and thank you for your time.


My Response:

Thanks for e-mailing :) Glad you liked the article. It was really cool to be profiled in the magazine :)

You'll be happy to know you have a first picture cover printing for this title. It's not a first printing overall since it originally came out in the blue tweed hardcover/wrap spine dust jacket format, but this book is from 1962 and is valued--in very good condition--at 15.00 in the Farah's Guide. Due to your flaws, maybe around 5.00 to 10.00.


Further Clues:

When the picture cover format was introduced in 1962, all of the first picture cover printings of titles from 1-39 listed on the back of the yellow spine picture cover to The Mystery of the Fire Dragon as the last listed title. So finding one that lists to Fire Dragon is a good thing! But, keep in mind some second/third/etc. printings also listed to Fire Dragon--the internal listings of some of these books are what you have to look at to see if it's a first picture cover or 2nd/3rd/etc. And that requires having a Farah's Guide to look up your printing. I do value/identify books at my website. Also, in 1963, when #40, The Moonstone Castle Mystery was published it also listed to Fire Dragon on back.


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