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The Great War (1914-1918) Forum

Remembered Today:

Kim's Bookshop, Chichester


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By chance I ducked into the aforementioned bookshop. Blimey. Worth visiting. Hundreds of second hand military books; I staggered out with

 

History of the Royal Regt of Artillery: Western Front 1914-1918 (Farndale)

Hospital Ships & Troopships of the First World War (McCutcheon)

Memoirs of a Rifleman Scout (Maj F M Crum)

Victoria' Harvest: The Irish Soldier in the Zulu War on 1879 (Truesdale and Young)

Their Glory Shall not be Blotted Out: The last Full Dress Uniforms of the British Army

British Artillery Weapons & Ammunition 1914-1918  (hogg & Thurston)

The Irish Regiments: A Pictorial History 1683-1987 (Harris)

Voices in Flight: The Royal Naval Air Service During the Great War (Smith)

History of the Indian Mountain Artillery (Graham)

 

All hardback except Lots of Pen and Sword hard copies of Great War period unit histories in perfect condition such as the RNAS During the Great War (£8.50) and Gallipoli Experience Reconsidered (Liddell) (£8.50)  and Crum ...looks like an inventory clearance. I already own a lot of what was on offer but the scope was surprisingly large and the prices very cheap. I had to stop as I couldn't carry any more....They had more than one copy of dozens of books. WWII was also well provided. Ditto RN WWI (Not my corearea of interest). A fine hardcopy History of the Hampshire Regt Vol I and II. Just FYI 

 

Best buys were Hospital Ships & Troopships (£8) and Farndale (£15) The later in immaculate hardback and a lot less than Abe.books.

 

A good day. MG

 

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Hmmm, only 30 minutes away....

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An hour for me - bought a few when I was last there, decent stock but not as outstanding as described.

 

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1 hour ago, Phil Wood said:

An hour for me - bought a few when I was last there, decent stock but not as outstanding as described.

 

 

I live 10 mins away and visit it about once every 1-2 months....the stock of Great war related material was historically poor, however it has increased dramatically. I spoke with the owner at length and it seems that she sees an opportunity that was previously neglected. My point, not well made, is that this bookshop has a lot more Great War related material than I have ever seen before, and much of it high quality at relatively low prices. Unfortunately they dont have their stock online. MG

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1 hour ago, QGE said:

 

I live 10 mins away and visit it about once every 1-2 months....the stock of Great war related material was historically poor, however it has increased dramatically. I spoke with the owner at length and it seems that she sees an opportunity that was previously neglected. My point, not well made, is that this bookshop has a lot more Great War related material than I have ever seen before, and much of it high quality at relatively low prices. Unfortunately they dont have their stock online. MG

 

        A large local collection of military  came on the market recently in your area,  which the local auctioneers were reluctant to handle because of the bulk. Another very active bookseller in your area turned it down for the same reason-he is very good on antiquarian books (online,no bricks and mortar shop) .Good hunting!!

   PS-  I was told a couple of months ago that the library was of the order of 10000 books all in- Better adjust your desk diary forthwith!!

Edited by Guest
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I am back in Pompey on Friday. Looks like an early VISIT is due.

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Kim's has always been worth a look. I think they used to have three shops including Worthing and Arundel. These days it's more remaindered stock than antiquarian. Many years ago I was lucky enough to find a jacketed first of Junger's 'Storm of Steel' there for £60, which might seem rather dear until you see it's now selling for over £2000. Long may they carry on.

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They had a nice copy of "Railways of the First World War: A History of Tactical Rail Communications on the British Fronts 1914-18" .  There are only four available on Abe.books; the cheapest is just over £70 and the most expensive is over £130. The one in Chichester was significantly cheaper and looking in good condition. It was books like this that caught my eye. 

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Could this thread be a way of highlighting the best places to find classic Great War books, or does everyone keep there cards to their chests? I will start if you want by suggesting the fabled 100,000 book ware house belonging to the 'Book Cupboard' on the Barbican in Plymouth. There is a massive Military Room. If you are very polite, Andy the owner, an ex marine will let you look by arrangement.

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Camilla's in Eastbourne has a large stock of military books on the first floor but there's always the danger of being crushed under the cascading piles.

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I am selling my Great War book collection. It took 15 years to accumulate and is now digitised. It can be accessed on a tiny memory stick. Gutenberg II.  I no longer need a bookcase. Memsahib is utterly delighted.

 

I would be genuinely interested in knowing who would be remotely interested in buying it. My only contact in the industry who supplied 90% of the books seems uninterested (TD to the informed). I have some books that are reasonably scarce and cost in excess of £300 each. I no longer need them so would be interested in suggestions on how to dispose them. I have nearly every regimental history covering the Great War plus lots more modern stuff. The latter is full of poorly researched, hero romantic drivel. Close to 400 books on unit histories alone, 600 including modern titles and some Pen & Sword type drivel. I suspect may have to pay someone to take the modern stuff away. Helion excepted.. Most is fiction when compared to the diaries which in itself is worth a book..." The accuracy of Great War History"

 

Once sold I will put the digitised books online for free. Goodbye expensive reprints. 

Edited by Guest
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I'm sure there are many on this forum, myself included, who'd be interested in the rarer stuff. You could post a list here for a start or maybe list them on EBay if you have the time. You could even set up as a dealer on ABE, for a fee, and then charge what you like for them. I'm surprised your industry source wasn't interested.

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You will be aware of the fact, that commercial used and antique-book dealers operate with huge margins in excess of 100%. So I would suggest you sell them as a trader online yourself on abe books as suggested above, or privately through various channels. More work yet more profit, too. If profit is no objective, or even the chance to make no loss,  commercial book dealers will take the more expensive stuff and pay very little, but you get rid of them fast and with little work.

GreyC

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I totally understand the logic and practicality of your decision. But somehow the hunt for books and the pleasure of ownership gets me every time. I often think about thinning the collection, but ....

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9 minutes ago, David Filsell said:

I totally understand the logic and practicality of your decision. But somehow the hunt for books and the pleasure of ownership gets me every time. I often think about thinning the collection, but ....

Agreed ... I have bought a bigger house to accommodate the books, pamphlets and ephemera. Maybe, one day I will read them rather than dip in. Sadly, digital solutions may be the only way if I survive to downsize

 

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I sell my surplus books on Amazon , no fees to pay until the book is sold . The main problem with Amazon is the search facility is poor when compared

with ABE , several times I have had to relist books that no longer appear when I put in a search for them . Also when a book is reprinted the listings for

original copies sometimes disappear  and are very difficult to locate unless you know how to find them. With ABE a buyer can put in a wants list

and be informed if the book is listed , not a perfect system but a facility which is unavailable on Amazon.

 

Just to add that my sales have fallen in the last two years quite dramatically , I think this is due to the fact that it's a pretty niche market and

people are not spending as much or opting for cheap reprints or free downloads . They have gone from an average of 27 books a year to

11 and this year just 3 so far. Also the problem when trying to sell the non-rare books is that you are competing with other books listed at 1p .

In the end I off loading some books that weren't selling on Amazon at a car boot for £2 each .

Edited by Black Maria
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9 hours ago, GreyC said:

you will be aware of the fact, that commercial used and antique-book dealers operate with huge margins in excess of 100%.

 

     As low as a meagre 100%   a) Pretty much all retail works on a lot more than that.   ii)  Simple rule- rarer the book, shorter the margin.  I regret that some of my companions on GWF may be reduced to tears when selling-  A lot of modern military stuff just doesn't have a commercial market secondhand of any consequence.

   If one has a collection, then split it-best books one way- a specialist dealer perhaps----"also rans" another- general bookshop, boot fair, skip.

 

    If you list on ABE they will take 12.5 % (inc. card processing)+ VAT on that.  Amazon is 15% + VAT. Abe has also a monthly fee dependent on the number of books you have listed.

    Depends how much you want to list the stuff, how long you want to wait and how keen you are on being a warehouse clerk when it comes to paperwork, and mailing. It is labour and time intensive.

9 hours ago, GreyC said:

commercial book dealers will take the more expensive stuff and pay very little

 

     May I ask if you are now or have ever been a bookseller???  Your comments appear uninformed

Edited by Guest
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18 hours ago, Dust Jacket Collector said:

Camilla's in Eastbourne has a large stock of military books on the first floor but there's always the danger of being crushed under the cascading piles.

 

    Camilla and Kim are related, I seem to remember- Mother and daughter???

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Camilla and Kim are related, I seem to remember- Mother and daughter???

Really, I didn't know that. Camilla was once described, by Driff as I recall, as the 'Marilyn Monroe of the book trade'. I wonder if that makes Kim the Jean Harlow?

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2 minutes ago, Dust Jacket Collector said:

Really, I didn't know that. Camilla was once described, by Driff as I recall, as the 'Marilyn Monroe of the book trade'. I wonder if that makes Kim the Jean Harlow?

 

   Dear boy, Marilyn Monroe was born in 1926-  and Drif himself in now an OAP.

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I always sell my unwanted books to a certain dealer we all know. He's always given me a fair price for them but more importantly I like to think I'm helping to keep him in business. Without such people my collection would be a very poor thing.

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I did once try and sell a rare memoir to a dealer, in the days before the net . They weren't interested , even though I was a good customer of theirs and

I wanted less than half the price they would have charged , that put me off of selling to dealers . I did once sell a load of nice WW1 books to a bookshop,

before I was online, it worked out about £1 for each new hardback book . I've never sold on e-bay but if I did I would never start at 99p , I've seen too

many rare WW1 books sell for peanuts. What I like about Amazon is that you get the price you want for your books and if they don't sell you don't lose

any money.

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  • 2 weeks later...
On 21/06/2017 at 23:41, QGE said:

I am selling my Great War book collection. It took 15 years to accumulate and is now digitised. It can be accessed on a tiny memory stick. Gutenberg II.  I no longer need a bookcase. Memsahib is utterly delighted.

 

I would be genuinely interested in knowing who would be remotely interested in buying it. My only contact in the industry who supplied 90% of the books seems uninterested (TD to the informed). I have some books that are reasonably scarce and cost in excess of £300 each. I no longer need them so would be interested in suggestions on how to dispose them. I have nearly every regimental history covering the Great War plus lots more modern stuff. The latter is full of poorly researched, hero romantic drivel. Close to 400 books on unit histories alone, 600 including modern titles and some Pen & Sword type drivel. I suspect may have to pay someone to take the modern stuff away. Helion excepted.. Most is fiction when compared to the diaries which in itself is worth a book..." The accuracy of Great War History"

 

Once sold I will put the digitised books online for free. Goodbye expensive reprints. 

 

The expensive and antiquarian books would interest a university. Look for one with a focus on WWI - I think Edinburgh does. If their library doesn't want them email the secretary to see if there is a lecturer, post-doc, or doctoral student there interested.

 

There will also be, and I am not a Historian so I don't know what its address is, a global email list for academics of world war history (probably even a list for wwi specifically) on which you would be able to list all the books as a pdf.

Edited by Joe Walsh
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