Thursday, October 3, 2013
A James Bond book anonymously donated to a Huntingdon charity shop is expected to reach between £400-£600 at auction next week.
Volunteers were amazed to find a first edition of Dr No by Ian Fleming amongst two bags donated to the shop about six months ago. The book was placed in a safe for three months until Geoffrey Stalker joined the High Street branch and discovered the literary gem.
Mr Stalker passed the book to Oxfam’s experts in London who have put the book in an auction at Bloomsbury in Godalming, Surrey, next Thursday (October 10).
Dr No is one of six Bond books being auctioned that day and is expected to reach the highest price.
Mr Stalker, who was appointed manager of Huntingdon’s Oxfam bookshop on Friday, told The Hunts Post: “The book was found in an anonymous donation which didn’t have much of interest, apart from the book. We have a lot of books donated that are worth £50-100 but the Dr No is a donation you may pick up every decade – especially as it is in such good condition.
“We have a lot of good quality old books donated dating back to 1750 and we carry out checks on every one. Sometimes we get excited about a book like a Madam Bovary we were handed from 1850, we valued it and it came out at £9.99.
“The market in books is very different, we had a Bible from 1897 we got very excited about, it was great and leather bounded, but we sold it for £1.99. But if there’s something of interest like a James Bond then that can reach a lot more.”
Mr Stalker added: “It’s been listed at £400-£600 but that’s a conservative estimate, the experts in London think it will go for more. It all depends who turns up on the day and Oxfam has been trying to get interest in the US and Canada.”
Max Hasler, Bloomsbury’s modern first edition specialist, said: “With authors like Fleming, by the time the first few have come out, and Dr No was the fifth, they become an instant best seller so they are not very scarce.
“The important thing though is the condition and this is probably the best I’ve seen this year. I’ve seen books like this go for around £1,000.”