Investing in recent first edition books

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On 25 October the Man Booker Prize for an original novel will be announced, and if this has never really caught your attention before, perhaps some of the investment opportunities it offers will.

Research from the bookworms at Gocompare has some interesting things to say about first edition prize-winning books - specifically that investing in them, especially signed ones, could net you a pretty profit.

Some of the most notable rises include 2009’s winner ‘Wolf Hall, by Hilary Mantel and the more recent, 2015 winner ‘A brief history of seven killings,’ by Marlon James. A first edition of the former, priced at £18.99 on release would go for £600 now, and a signed first edition would fetch £1,100. That’s an increase of 3060% and 5693%, respectively.

A Brief History of Seven Killings also came out priced at £18.99. A first edition now would get you £150 and a signed one £400. Those are 690% and 7009% rises.

To compare, between October 2009 and now the FTSE 100 has risen 31.5%. And between October 2015 and now, it has risen 7.3%.

Of course, there’s a massive difference between investing in a singular first edition of book and putting regular amounts of cash into a stocks and shares Isa, but it’s an interesting thought all the same.

If you do fancy investing and have some questions about how to start, perhaps it’s worth booking an appointment with the investment doctor? Email your questions to

Here's the full list of Booker prize winners and their worth today:

Year Title Author Original RRP (£) First edition value (£) Signed first edition value (£)
2000 The Blind Assassin Margaret Atwood 16.99 55 213
2001 True History of Kelly Gang Peter Carey 16.99 65 200
2002 Life of Pi Yann Martel 12.99 125 300
2003 Vernon God Little DBC Pierre 12.99 232 581
2004 The Line of Beauty Alan Hollinghurst 16.99 155 280
2005 The Sea John Banville 12.99 114 200
2006 The Inheritance of Loss Kiran Desai 16.99 220 232
2007 The Gathering Anne Enright 12.99 75 420
2008 The White Tiger Aravind Adiga 16.99 100 280
2009 Wolf Hall Hilary Mantel 18.99 600 1100
2010 The Finkler Questions Howard Jacobson 18.99 75 310
2011 The Sense of an Ending Julian Barnes 12.99 75 300
2012 Bring up the Bodies Hilary Mantel 20 160 300
2013 The Luminaries Eleanor Catton 18.99 100 581
2014 The Narrow Road to the Deep North Richard Flanagan 16.99 134 480
2015 a Brief History of Seven Killings Marlon James 18.99 150 400