Who am I?

Hello. I am Debra Harrison, a lifelong reader and book lover who found a few documents in books from used bookstores and got bitten – bitten hard… by the book collecting bug. I first found a note from Eleanor Roosevelt to her cousin Alice inside a book about FDR. The note was on a card by artist/illustrator Fritz Kreidel who wrote a children’s Christmas book with Ms Roosevelt. So I searched til I found a pristine copy of the children’s book for my collection. About now things started clicking – I started thinking about favorite authors and historical figures that I admired and decided it would be great to have them with me in some way in my home. Perhaps a book by or about them,,, or a letter signed by them…

It was about this time that I picked up a book by James Russell Lowell – a favorite figure of mine for years and found inside a handwritten poem from James Russell to Oliver Wendell Holmes on the occassion of his eightieth birthday! An (I assume) unpublished poem in the hand of the poet! Not his best work unfortunatly, but I was beside myself with excitement!

I have always dreamed of oneday having a personal library. One which held much loved books waiting to be reread as well as books that would be new to me. I continued to haunt second hand bookstores and discovered the world of Ebay, ABE, Powell’s Books, Biblio, and more… I also discovered I have a particular fondness for beautiful books – fine bound books, preferably signed but even unsigned would please me as I discovered many classic books I had been meaning to read at surprisingly affordable prices. My collection was growing… books everywhere!

I had been a breast cancer survivor for about 5 years when I was diagnosed with two additional cancers unrelated to my previous cancer or to each other, More surgery… more chemp… bald again… And now unable to work. As my collection grew, so did my credit card balance. What to do? I found myself book rich and cash poor. So – I started this site where I will sell some of my books as I feel I can part with them. I also have an Ebay store ArtLiteratureandMore http://stores.shop.ebay.com/Art-Literature-and-More__W0QQ_armrsZ1 . I will be working hard on this site so I hope you come back and do so often. I will be updating and adding new features. Soon I will have a shop connected offering many rare treats from my library.

Thanks much for visitin’.

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7 responses to “ Who am I? ”

  1. Jim Dambrosia says:

    I have a first edition “One Cent Life” – Wallase Ting. #545 of 2000 in excellent condition.

  2. Peter Hyde says:

    I love the look of your blog. You clearly have an eye for design. Don’t get me wrong, your writing is excellent as well. Good luck with your chemo. Best, Peter

  3. Mike Champion says:

    Hello Debra,

    Thank you for following Book Passion on Google+. We are a very small bookshop based in Canberra, Australia. My wife runs the shop – she is also passionate about books and our home is filled with a great collection, as is our shop.

    Good luck with your venture.

    Best regards,

    Mike Champion

  4. Debra, I enjoyed reading the stories behind the books that got you started in book collecting. I look forward to reading future posts, keep up the good work!

    • Debra says:

      Thanks, Kristian. I am pleased you enjoy my site. It is a labor of love. I am currently getting in excess of 16,000 visitors a month! I really love this site (and its loyal readers…) Regards, Debra

  5. Ian Gordon says:

    Hello Debra, I received the note you sent me on Twitter. I have some deluxe books that I’ve published here in Australia that would be almost unseen on the US Market, all first editions. My latest is on Australia’s official Vietnam war artist. Let me know if you’d like any copies or to put them in your shop. I can do signed copies also. Regards Ian

  6. Debra says:

    The age of a book does not usually determine its value. There are a few things you can do: 1. go to ABE ( http://www.abe.com) and enter your book title and publisher. With any luck, you will see other books that are similar and see what they sell for – remember, however – the price on ABE is the asking price which may vary greatly from the actual sales price. Publication information in modern books can generally be found on the back of the title page (the page at the front of the book which has the title of the book on it). In many older books, you may find information about publisher, date of publication, etc on one of the last pages in the book. 2. If all of that fails and if your book is in great condition, you may want to take it to an appraiser. Prices for appraisals vary greatly. The larger auction houses may take a look at your book and let you know its worth (Christies, Southebys, and Bonhams, for example.) 3. AB Books have an online instant appraisal at http://www.pacificbook.com/bibliobot/. I would be cautious about taking it to a used book store – or anywhere someone will want to buy it from you. The best appraisals are free of conflicting interests.

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