• If you start a thread here you have permission to edit the thread and your posts indefinitely. So if the status of your sale or auction changes, please come back and update the thread.

Bought "The Last Night Of The Earth Poems"

#1
Today I walked into a bookstore. I found a copy of "The Last Night On Earth". I was told it was a first edition. I happily paid $26 for it. I go home to find that although it was first published in 1992 the inside title page says Black Sparrow Press Santa Rosa 1996. That says to me that it isn't a first edition. Have I been duped? If it is a second edition, is $26 still a good price?

rotated.jpg
 
Last edited by a moderator:

skiroomalum

What would Balls Mahoney do?
Over 1000 posts
#2
Technically it is a first edition, later printing. I don't think you got taken,
though if your goal is to have a true 1st printing pb, you could likely pick one up for not much more.
 

mjp

Moderator
Founding member
Over 5000 posts
#4
Technically it is a first edition, later printing.
I don't particularly like that technicality. It's only used to deceive people and separate them from their money. If every printing is a first edition, then there is no first edition. So I say you were duped, Dog, by someone hiding behind a technicality.

When we talk about first editions from Black Sparrow, we're talking about the first printing. They're usually easy to recognize by the color printing on the title pages.

And not for nothing, the name of the book is The Last Night of the Earth Poems. Not The Last Night Of The Earth or The Last Night On Earth.

Words matter, right? You wouldn't be here if they didn't.
 
#6
When we talk about first editions from Black Sparrow, we're talking about the first printing. They're usually easy to recognize by the color printing on the title pages.
Just to clarify for the OP some of the discussion here, if edits are made to the First Edition, First Printing, then the subsequent printings are considered Second Editions, but if no edits are made for subsequent printings, technically they are considered to be First Edition, Second (etc.) Printings. While mjp is accurately denoting what we mean when we say First Edition, it really doesn't make any sense to say First Edition when what's important is that it's a First Printing.

So, yes you were likely duped by the technically correct but not always well-understood and potentially misleading terminology used, but that doesn't mean that you overspent by any great deal. I mean, how many 400+ page hardcovers can you buy for $26 these days? For the record, I have a First Printing HC Trade Edition of The Last Night of the Earth Poems and it cost me $80 several years ago. Prices have come down a bit, but paying $26 for a clean First HC of this title would fall in the "if it seems to good to be true..." category for me.
 
Last edited:
#7
Technically it is a first edition, later printing. I don't think you got taken,
though if your goal is to have a true 1st printing pb, you could likely pick one up for not much more.
Thanks skiroomalum!

Thanks for the link Black Swan!

My paperback copy would be 1 of 13k+...if it were a first edition. It's at least an unedited first edition, second printing. I can live with that. I'm definitely going to be more thorough when looking at my next book purchase.

When we talk about first editions from Black Sparrow, we're talking about the first printing. They're usually easy to recognize by the color printing on the title pages.

And not for nothing, the name of the book is The Last Night of the Earth Poems. Not The Last Night Of The Earth or The Last Night On Earth.

Words matter, right? You wouldn't be here if they didn't.
Thanks MJP! When I saw in another post that the title page was in color and mine wasn't it was a red flag for me.

Words do matter. I fixed the title after I had posted about 1am. I forgot to fix the title in the message.

my new catch phrase!
I like it. Some of the greatest creations come from mistakes.

Just to clarify for the OP some of the discussion here, if edits are made to the First Edition, First Printing, then the subsequent printings are considered Second Editions, but if no edits are made for subsequent printings, technically they are considered to be First Edition, Second (etc.) Printings. While mjp is accurately denoting what we mean when we say First Edition, it really doesn't make any sense to say First Edition when what's important is that it's a First Printing.
Got it. Makes sense. Thanks for explaining.
 
#8
Just so you know, an almost definitive check that something is a First Edition Black Sparrow Press book is that the title pages are in color. I believe a good number of years ago, a member here posted that he has a second printing with a color title page, but that is certainly the exception rather than the norm.
 

Pogue Mahone

Officials say drugs may have played a part
Over 1000 posts
#10
Most book sellers don't understand Black Sparrow editions/printings. It's mostly a crime of ignorance on the seller side. I have personally had an issue buying a first edition City Lights books as well -- but I won that battle, even though ABE asked me to let it go.