Rare books for Father’s Day

by Liz on June 14, 2012 · Market Analysis

Most popular rare book gifts for Father's Day     It should come as no great surprise to the avid rare book collector that one of the most desirable and well received gifts to present on Father’s Day is a rare book. Whether you are a first generation rare book collector, or you are a chip off the old block who has emulated your father of his own rare book investments, you are sure to bring a smile to your father’s face by gifting him with a delightful rare book that is specific to his personal interests. Below we have listed a sampling of some of the most popular rare books exchanged on this sentimental observance.
The ClassicsMoby Dick or The Whale by Herman Melville. First 1851 Edition by Harper and Brothers. Moby Dick is an especially beloved classic, especially among those who enjoy the ocean and all things pertaining to nautical adventures. Moby Dick has been enjoyed for generations, and is one rare book that will never lose its appeal, even an impressive 161 years after it was written. Today, the first edition of Moby Dick is widely sought after and is very popular during this special occasion.
The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn by Mark Twain. First Edition, 1885. It seems that nearly every grown man today will admit to having once enjoyed reading about the scrapes and mishaps that young Tom Sawyer and his friend Huckleberry Finn manage to find themselves in in Twain’s entertaining tale. The early editions of The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn are now a desirable rare book choice, and are considered to be one of the greatest American classics ever to be written.
A Tale of Two Cities by Charles Dickens. First Edition, published in 1859 by Chapman and Hall. We have extolled the various works of Dickens in previous articles, but A Tale of Two Cities is particularly praiseworthy. As lugubrious and shrouded in darkness as many of Dickens’s themes may appear, their ultimate messages to humankind regarding dignity and equality among those more vulnerable than we, are one reason why they are set apart as distinguished and appealing rare books, and irreplaceable additions to the Classics genre.
Science FictionDo Androids Dream of Electric Sheep? By Philip Dick. 1968. First  Edition. Philip Dick has succeeded in mesmerizing and enthralling the world with his ingenious and perplexing futuristic tales, and Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep? is no exception. Further, the riveting plot later inspired the creation of Ridley Scott’s movie production of Blade Runner.
Nineteen Eighty-Four by George Orwell. 1949 First Edition. Nineteen Eighty-Four startled and arrested the world with its effrontery extrapolations and predictions of the future in society and government. Today the content in Nineteen Eighty-Four is the source for the term Orwellian, used to describe someone who is inordinately tyrannical. Hmm, not so much the loving theme we should be celebrating on father’s special day.
ActionCasino Royale by Ian Fleming. 1953 first edition published by Jonathan Cape. The James Bond series as a whole continues to be revered, and the later film adaptations of the books have certainly spanned a few generations of fathers. Casino Royale is indisputably one of the most exciting of Fleming’s action books in the James Bond Series since it was the very first.
Obscure and Unseemly—Codex Seraphinianus by Luigi Serafini. First Editions 1981 for the Franco Maria Ricci, and 1983 for the American/French/German publications. The book has received a great deal of attention, primarily because it is wholly unintelligible and vastly baffling. I wonder why so many fathers find a book that has been deemed as “the weirdest book ever printed” attractive.
While many of the aforementioned books are considerably pricey, they are certainly worth a great deal to a father or a child for that matter, and are significantly well sought after and esteemed. They captivate the hearts and interests of particularly those who take delight in Classical Literature, Science Fiction, Action, and the Obscure. Together, they create a medley of amalgamated rare book bliss, and on their own they each provide a unique memory, and a wondrous gift to be bestowed on the joyous observation of Father’s Day.

About the author

Partner, rare book dealer. Sekkes Consultants.

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