E-bay Books?

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Richard Hull
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E-bay Books?

Post by Richard Hull » Tue Feb 10, 2004 2:51 am

The very last place I would look for books would be E-bay. However, one never knows.

I just recently found an E-bay seller offering a copy of Frederick Soddy's superlative old book, "The Interpretation of Radium".

I already have 6 copies. It is one of those very few books that I just have to have all printings and editions. (of which there were a number). Soddy's book was published in 1909. The small first edition, first printing, sold out in months. There were other printings that followed quickly and by 1912, The book was in a third edition. The book was published rather constantly into the 20's. The first printer was John Murray of London. In the early 20s this was taken over by Putnam.

Putnams editions have the latest and best updated info, but nothing beats an early edition, as Soddy waxes eloquent and is obviously awe struck by radium and its radiations. This material is purged ruthlessly in later printings as being a bit maudlin. Too bad, it is a testament to the romantic spirit of late Victorian/Edwardian England.

Anyway, I figured that I could take a shot at another copy even though the conditon was not given or the edition #. It was only $20.00 to start and a decent, but well used, 1920, Putnam copy goes in the $40.00 range. So I shot for it.

I got it at $20.00! This was a real coup.

The book arrived today and low and behold it is a rare third edition of 1912, the last Murray printing, that I did not have! This puppy is worth at least $100.00! ( I enclose an image of its red highly embossed cover, which is a classic and identical to the first edition.)

So E-bay does, on rare ocassions, have a good book buy.

Richard Hull
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Re: E-bay Books?

Post by Jon Rosenstiel » Thu Jun 23, 2005 6:37 pm

Richard,

I just received a copy of the same book (John Murray with red embossed cover). I ordered it from a book seller in England back in March. Cost me a little over $70.00 (Plus a three month wait).

I think I may have acquired a first edition copy, as it contains no markings to the contrary.

Jon Rosenstiel

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Re: E-bay Books?

Post by Richard Hull » Thu Jun 23, 2005 7:05 pm

Yes, You have the rare first edition, provided it sticks to the 1909 publish date and doesn't mention a later date on any page! Still any red embossed cover printed by Murray and sons, (see original image here), is a rarity. Nice score! I paid $145.00 for my first, first edition over 6 years ago.

You will like this as Soddy waxes eloquent expressing the wonderment of what was actually going on in radium as this was an amazing and wide open field then and they were all star struck. He carefully prunes out the school-boy "wows" and "gee-whiz" commentary in the very next edition as he was older, more staid and settling into Edwardian England's scientific hierarchy joining with the ultra luminaries of that period; Rutherford, Kelvin, Crookes, Eve, Blackett, Hevesy, Ramsey, and many others. Excited, distinguished gentlemen were not socially acceptable then.

Richard Hull
Progress may have been a good thing once, but it just went on too long. - Yogi Berra
Fusion is the energy of the future....and it always will be
Retired now...Doing only what I want and not what I should...every day is a saturday.

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Re: E-bay Books?

Post by Nanos » Sun May 06, 2007 9:00 am

I was thinking it would be nice if there was those willing to scan such books out of copyright, it would enable us to create a small library of digitised works so everyone could have access.

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Re: E-bay Books?

Post by Richard Hull » Mon May 07, 2007 7:57 pm

The book is currently in a modern reprint!!! So it is still copyrighted. No scanning allowed.

Richard Hull
Progress may have been a good thing once, but it just went on too long. - Yogi Berra
Fusion is the energy of the future....and it always will be
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Re: E-bay Books?

Post by Nanos » Mon May 14, 2007 3:06 pm

Its a pity in this digital age there is no equivalent to the old fashioned library where you could go and borrow a book and take it back. Perhaps if publishers were willing to entertain the idea of doing that, they could see yet another income stream.

Maybe allow anyone willing to scan an entire book, gets 50% of the profits from any digital sales, that way, the bulk of the expensive work is done by private individuals, you get more books available in a digital format, archived for historal purposes too, and the publisher/author makes a profit along the way as well.

Being how people are already copying books and the publisher gets nothing, this way, its a win win situation for everyone..

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Re: E-bay Books?

Post by Richard Hull » Mon Jun 04, 2007 5:50 pm

Somethings are reserved to books alone.

I would hate to have to read a book on line.

In the digital age, complete books on line would most likely be just casually consulted or nipped at. Few digitaloids have or allow themselves the time to really read extensively from real books anymore. Too fast a world, too much information out there to dive into old books.

As with any innovation, there is good news and there is bad news.

Richard Hull
Progress may have been a good thing once, but it just went on too long. - Yogi Berra
Fusion is the energy of the future....and it always will be
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Re: E-bay Books?

Post by Nanos » Tue Jun 05, 2007 6:03 am

I was thinking more of downloading the book to ones PDA to read at leisure, I used to download books to my PDA (Nokia 9210i) and read them very comfortably on the bus to and from work, making a good use of a couple of hours each day.

I'd also download the morning news as well.

A PDA takes up less room than a single paperback, saves space (I live in 116 square feet of space, so anything more than a few hundred books and I'm out of living space! where as my friend with 15,000+ books manages fine but only because he has a penthouse suite and avoids tree/paper issues, whilst giving one the benefit of the search function, and ability to read at night without having a seperate torch

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Re: E-bay Books?

Post by Richard Hull » Tue Jun 05, 2007 3:35 pm

I see you have Luckey's book on radiation hormesis. I can't quite bring myself to spend the long CRC buck on that one yet, but I have most of his papers on the subject.

I have seen rock bottom prices as low as $310.00 used and high prices of $950.00 in new, as issued, condition for this rare tome.

I am a supporter of hormesis. The issue is how much penetrating radiation over norm and background is best to be bathed in.

Richard Hull
Progress may have been a good thing once, but it just went on too long. - Yogi Berra
Fusion is the energy of the future....and it always will be
Retired now...Doing only what I want and not what I should...every day is a saturday.

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Re: E-bay Books?

Post by Richard Hull » Tue Jun 05, 2007 7:29 pm

I'm not too much on chronic, overly steep doses of radon due to particulate daughter retention in target organs. I don't mind the rarely occasional high acute radon doses though.

I was thinking more along the lines of 10 times background of highly penetrating only gamma radiation to thump the old immune system into continuous exercise mode.

But enough of this here, if more discussion is needed on this topic, then one of us or someone else can start another thread in the radiation forum.

Richard Hull
Progress may have been a good thing once, but it just went on too long. - Yogi Berra
Fusion is the energy of the future....and it always will be
Retired now...Doing only what I want and not what I should...every day is a saturday.

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