Where to buy rare special edition books?

Where to buy rare special edition books?

Is there anything more euphoric than stumbling upon a rare special edition book? The one you’ve been searching years for, or the one you never realised you absolutely needed, until the moment you saw it? 

If you’re looking for something truly unique to add to your book collection, but need some inspiration on where to find rare special edition books, then keep reading as we explore the best places to discover these hidden gems.

6 places to find rare special edition books 

1. Your local independent bookshop 

Ok, we’re a little biased but there’s no better place to find rare special editions than at your local independent bookshop. At Goldsboro, special editions are our thing, especially signed first editions. We even pioneered the first special edition book club, PREM1ER, where members enjoy hand-picked titles delivered straight to their door that often become international bestsellers (the rare books of the future!). 

2. Book fairs, festivals and expos

If you want to meet a variety of rare book dealers, then book fairs, book festivals and expos are the place to be. These events often have a wide variety of special edition books on offer, and you may even find signed copies or limited editions that are not available anywhere else. 

3. Auctions

Auctions, both online and in person, can be both a lucrative and thrilling way to secure your next rare book, including unique special editions. Just be cautious to research the seller thoroughly to determine the book's authenticity, before placing your bid.

4. Collector communities

Consider joining online communities, forums like Reddit (r/bookcollecting), and social media groups dedicated to book collecting. If you’re interested in a specific genre such as fantasy fiction, there are even dedicated groups specifically for fantasy special editions.

Use these groups to seek out any specific books you’re keen to add to your collection, or enjoy tips and general fan-girling over beautiful and rare special editions.

5. Author talks & signings

Author events are an ideal place to get your hands on special edition books. Not only can you often pick up exclusive and limited-run editions by the author, which could prove to become rare in the future, but it gives you the experience of meeting the author yourself to get your book signed or personalised. 

6. Charity shops

10 years ago, charity shops were a book collectors dream. It wouldn’t be out of the ordinary to find an incredibly rare book sitting patiently on a charity shop shelf, with a £1 sticker on it. 

Sadly, with the rise of online buying, and the general increase in book collecting interest, these moments are becoming few and far between.

It is however still entirely possible to find a rare special edition in your local charity shop, so always browse those bookshelves as you never know what you might uncover between the battered Jackie Collins novels! 

How rare is your special edition?

Some final parting advice: just because a book has been labelled a special edition, does not make it rare. Make sure you do your research as some special editions have large print runs, so unless they’re numbered, you really don’t know how limited a special edition is.

Find your next rare book

Now you know where to seek out your next special edition book, start your journey by browsing our rare books, or take a look at our exclusive new special editions. Better yet, visit our friendly team in store at our London or Brighton bookshops - we’d love to be part of your book collecting journey.
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