EUREKA BOOKS (est. 1987)

426 2nd St. Eureka, CA 95501. Map It
(707) 444-9593
   

Book Collecting

Repeal California’s Terrible Autograph Law

January 3rd, 2017  |  by  |  published in AB1570, Book Collecting, Bookselling, Feature

gaiman-easton-small

Here’s my New Year’s resolution: Repeal California’s terrible new autograph law.

Sign our Change.org petition to repeal the law.

The Los Angeles Times’ editorial board called it the worst of the 1000 bills passed in 2016, referring to it as “one truly horrible law” and writing, “This bill never should have passed. The Legislature must fix or repeal it immediately when it resumes business.” So let’s get to it!

As a fitting cumeuppance, the author of the law, Ling Ling Chang, was defeated in her quest for re-election. Here are the bill’s sitting co-sponsors:

Cristina Garcia. State Assembly 58th District. Downey area, Los Angeles

Catharine Baker. State Assembly 16th District. Walnut Creek / Pleasanton, East Bay
William C. Brough. State Assembly 73rd District. San Clemente area, Southern California
James Gallagher. State Assembly 3rd District. Chico, Northern California
Tom Lackey. State Assembly 36th District. Lancaster / Palmdale, Southern California

Benjamin Allen, State Senate 26th District. Santa Monica / Beverly Hills, Los Angeles area
Joel Anderson, State Senate 38th District. Escondido / El Cajon, San Diego area
Tom Berryhill, State Senate 8th District. Fresno area
Janet Nguyen, State Senate 34th District. Santa Ana area, Southern California

[More blog posts on AB1570]

Top 7 Reasons to Repeal AB1570

1. Most Californians Are Harmed
Nearly everyone in California has a signed item in their possession: a signed book, a piece of art, or perhaps a signed baseball from their childhood.

Under AB1570, when a California consumer sells a signed item worth $5 or more to a reputable dealer, to an art gallery, or via auction, the consumer’s name and address must be included on a Certificate of Authenticity (COA) accompanying it.

This requirement is both an invasion of privacy and represents a danger to the seller, as the COA provides a literal road map for potential thieves.

The law offers not accommodation for items sold to dealers before the law went into effect, thereby retroactively changing the expected privacy of previous transactions.

2. It Partially Repeals the Landmark Reader Privacy Act
The Reader Privacy statute prohibits booksellers from revealing the reading habits of their customers unless compelled by a court order.

AB1570 now requires some booksellers to disclose the reading habits of customers who sell, donate, or otherwise dispose of signed books. The autograph law unintentionally weakens the Reader Privacy Act.

Michael Risher, a lawyer with the ACLU of Northern California, told the New York Times, “The law is an invasion into privacy and should be amended.”

3. The Law Exposes the Very Consumers It Intended to Protect to Lawsuits
For purposes of this law, a “dealer” is defined to include California consumers who sell signed items at auction (Dealer includes … “persons who are consignors … of auctioneers.”)

Any consumer who sells a signed item through an auction house is a consignor and therefore by definition a dealer. When a dealer fails to supply a COA, they are subject to civil action under AB1570.

4. It Compels Auction Houses to Reveal Their Consignors
All auction houses are covered by AB1570, whenever they sell a signed item. In addition to requiring a COA from each consignor, AB1570 requires a second COA from the auction house itself. This COA must include the name and address of the source of the item (the consignor). This provision would cover estate auctions, auction sales of signed artwork, signed books, or signed entertainment memorabilia.

Confidentiality of consignors is a tenet of auction houses. The New York Times recently quoted a representative of Bloomsbury Auctions as saying, “one of the fundamental cornerstones of the auction world is our client’s privacy.” Not anymore; not in California. This puts California auctioneers at a distinct disadvantage.

 5. New Bookstores Seem to Be Covered By the Law If They Sell Online (and they all do)
Many aspects of AB1570 are maddeningly vague, but this is the single worst sentence in the single worst law of the year:

Dealers, to whom the law applies, “includes a person engaged in a mail order, telephone order, online, or cable television business for the sale of collectibles [signed items].” (1739.7(a)(4)(a)).

Rewording it: This law applies to anyone engaged in the online sale of signed items. So, if a new bookstore holds an author signing and then offers the signed books on its website, it is engaged in the online business of selling signed items.

There is a temptation to read “engaged in business” as primarily in the business, but engaged is, in fact, a much lower threshold, that is met with even a small volume of business. Businesses primarily engaged in the selling signed items are covered by other sections of the law, so presumably the legislature meant to extend the law to a much broader group of online sellers.

It should be noted that once someone meets the definition of dealer that all signed items sold by that business must have COAs.

6. Seven Years of Recordkeeping Is Ridiculous for a $5 Item
Dealers are required to keep copies of the COAs they issue for seven years and they are required to issue COAs for items priced at as little as $5.

7. AB1570 Hurts Book Fairs and Art Shows
Out-of-state dealers are required to comply with the autograph law when exhibiting at shows in California. Show promoters are required to notify dealers that they are subject to legal action for failing to comply. Already, this law has caused two dealers to cancel participation in the 50th Annual California Antiquarian Book Fair. The law will also deter out-of-state art dealers from exhibiting in California. This will ultimately hurt collectors.

 


Isaac Asimov Catalog Now Online

January 22nd, 2012  |  by  |  published in Book Collecting, Feature 3

Foundation Trilogy

A fine, first edition set of Isaac Asimov’s Foundation Trilogy.

We have just published our first catalog of Isaac Asimov first editions. You can download a pdf of the printed catalog now, or view it on the web, with every item illustrated with photos. We will be publishing additional lists of books, as we get them catalogued. Please visit our Asimov homepage for the lastest info, or simply swing by the store.


The British Invasion, Harry Potter style

October 1st, 2011  |  by  |  published in Book Collecting, Books, New Arrivals

British editions of Harry Potter by J. K. Rowling

British editions of Harry Potter by J. K. Rowling

We are excited to present our newly acquired collection of British 1st edition Harry Potters in both the children’s and adult designs.  The books are unread and in fine condition.

Do you speak Latin?  We have a 1st edition Harrius Potter et Philosophi Lapis. Irish?  Come check out Harry Potter agus an Orcholch.  Welsh?  We have Harri Potter a Maen yr Athronydd.

If you speak English we have a lot to choose from.  All seven books plus The Tales of Beedle the Bard. Canadian 1st editions also available.

Accio Potter!


Hello Norma Jean

November 19th, 2010  |  by  |  published in Book Collecting

Marilyn-Monroe-photo2 We just got in a huge collection of Marilyn Monroe books recently purchased from a private collector.  Our shelves are bursting with multiple copies of possibly every book ever published about the famous and tragic Hollywood star. So if you know any gentlemen who prefer blondes, or anyone who likes it hot, send them our way.  Don’t bother to knock, just come on in!

The collection also includes many books on fashion and photography.


JF Cooper Set Countdown Nears End

November 18th, 2009  |  by  |  published in Book Collecting, Books, Bookselling

DSCN7783

This set of J. Fenimore Cooper's Works (10 volumes, published 1891), illustrated with wood engravings is getting cheaper every day. It started out at $145 at the beginning of the month. The price is currently just $30! and it drops $5 per day until someone buys it or we give it away free on the day before Thanksgiving. This set retails for $100-150, so it's a steal already. If you want it, hurry down!


Collecting Newspapers

April 25th, 2008  |  by  |  published in Book Collecting

A recent email from one of our readers who collects historic newspapers, lead me to a small cache of YouTube videos about two leading newspaper dealers, Timothy Hughes and the Mitchell Archive. Hughes is definitely the leading dealer in his field and has a great many newspapers in inventory. His business turns out to be a family affair that has taken over what used to be his father's machine shop. This video shows it to be ephemera dealing on fork-lift and heavy-lift scale.

The Mitchell Archive video is a nice presentation about collecting newspapers. Mark Mitchell specializes more in highspots:

More videos are also available:

 

Timothy Hughes on Newspaper Collecting

About Mark Mitchell

Behind the Scenes at the Mitchell Archives

Guy Heilenman, President of Timothy Hughes Rare Newspapers

More Hughes Videos on Their YouTube Channel

 


The Most Illustrated Bible

April 15th, 2008  |  by  |  published in Book Collecting

This from "Bible Editions & Versions," the Journal of the International Society of Bible Collectors (April – June 2008):

Brickark"The Brick Testament. Constructed and photographed entirely by the Rev. Brendan Powell Smith. The largest, most comprehensive illustrated Bible in the world, with over 3,600 illustrations (the scenes are made from Lego blocks) that retell more than 300 stories from the Bible. First launched as a website in 2001, then as a published book series in 2003."

I love how deadpan the description is. The "Reverend" Smith is hardly reverent. He is, however, obsessive, and pretty good with Legos.

Image of Noah's Ark.


Help Identifying Children’s Book Artist

February 18th, 2008  |  by  |  published in Book Collecting

Does anyone know who made these illustrations? I just bought seven original paintings and drawings from an unknown children's book that appears to have depicted scenes from countries around the world. The artist signs his or her paintings with a capital T (shown below):
Dscn4936
Dscn4940

Here are two typical examples. These fish are labeled "page 24 Islands – Java – Ceylon." The caption, typed and pasted on the bottom edge of the illustration, reads "Watching so many funny things, / Bright colored fish and fish with wings."
Dscn4935

A couple of the illustrations are monochromatic. I assume that some pages in the final book were in color and some were printed just in black. The example below is "page 50 Spain." It is captioned, "An orange-laden donkey spied / Burdened with fruit on either side."

I've tried googling the text of the captions and tried Amazon.com's "Search Inside" feature, with no luck. Anyone recognize the style?

Dscn4937


Harry Potter Perplexities

October 30th, 2007  |  by  |  published in Book Collecting

Hpcolophonscombined
No, this isn't a post about Hogwart's headmaster Albus Dumbledore being gay, it's an update on our story about variant copies of the last Harry Potter novel, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows. As reported by our very own Kimberly Howell, multiple printers were used for the novel, and each one is identified in the colophon of the book. These are true variants, which would be recognized by any bibliographer. As far as we know, prior to our article on them in the November/December 2007 issue of Fine Books & Collections, no one had noted them before. We identified four variants and asked readers if there were others. We just got our first new example. [Update 10/31/07: We have a 6th printer. Based on information we gathered for the story, we believed there were six variants. If that's correct, we have them all now. Thanks to everyone who checked their copies.]

Here is the current list of variant readings of the colophon:

Variant A: RR Donnelley in Crawfordsville, Indiana
Variant B: RR Donnelley in Harrisonburg, Virginia
Variant C: Quebecor World Martinsburg in Martinsburg, West Virginia
Variant D: Quebecor World Fairfield in Fairfield, Pennsylvania
Variant E: Quebecor World Taunton in Taunton, Massachusetts
Variant F: Quebecor World Versailles in Versailles, Kentucky [added 10/31/07]

If you have a copy of the first printing of the first American edition that isn't on our list, please let us know and we'll add it. A scan of the colophon page would be appreciated, too.

I suspect that there are variants in the colophons of the first editions of other Harry Potter novels, which wait to be identified. One printer told me that 10 manufacturers worked on a previous Harry Potter, though he wasn't at liberty to say which book!

If you are interested in HP, our November/December issue (on newsstands now) also has a story about the collectors who bought the Harry Potters inscribed to J. K. Rowlings' father for close to $100,000.

Given the record prices paid recently for first editions of the first book, Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone, those association copies are looking like better and better deals all the time. In case you missed it, on October 25, Christie's South Kensington (London) branch sold a first edition of The Philosopher's Stone (published in a hardcover edition reported to be around 300 to 500 copies) for £19,700 ($40,000). The next day, Heritage Auction Galleries in Dallas sold an ex-library copy of the same book for $33,460.


Bookstore Barbers

October 24th, 2007  |  by  |  published in Book Collecting

Bookstorebarbers
Last year we ran a photo of a stamp in a book identifying it as having come from Roy Bean's Used Book Center and Barbershop, which is one of the all-time great bookstore names, if you ask me.

Now our friends over at the Exile Bibliophile have located a second bookstore-barbershop combo, this one from early 19th century Boston. For the full scoop, visit Exile's book ephemera blog.

Does anyone else know of bookstore barbershops? If so, let me know and I'll post updates.


Categories