So, when you see a book you like how do you decide which edition to buy? Obviously sometimes there isn’t a choice, at least in actual bookstores other than maybe hardcover or paperback, but when there is a choice what makes you pick one edition over another?
Take Harry Potter for example, there are so many editions! I actually don’t have a matching set of all seven books, I have a boxset of the first four and then bought the rest as they came out. I want a matching set of hardcovers and I have just picked the ones I find the prettiest, well the two sets actually and in each set I like all the covers. Two sets I suppose isn’t crazy but what if you like say five or six sets, what do you do? Buy them all? Just buy one set? How do you pick that one set? What if you love some of the covers in one edition, but don’t like others in the same edition? Do you buy some books in one edition and others in another?
Why am I thinking about this? Well, I have started getting a few classics. Classics, like Harry Potter come in a huge number of editions. Some are just boring and I would only buy them if I just wanted a really cheap one to see if I like the story, but there are a lot of really nice editions too.
I decided a while ago that I liked the Penguin clothbound covers, so I bought a few of them.
Then, this happened.
I love this cover and really wanted the book so I had to get this one, it’s the Penguin deluxe edition and obviously doesn’t match the other classics I have. So, should I buy this in the clothbound cover so I have a matching set with just an extra one? It seems like a waste of money, but I do love a good matching set.
Maybe you are thinking just doubling up on one book or having one book that doesn’t match the others is ok? Well, this just happened…
Another deluxe edition…. Maybe now you’re thinking I obviously like these editions, so why don’t I replace my clothbound ones with these and switch to collecting everything in the deluxe editions instead? Well, I don’t like the deluxe editions for every book. I wish they were all beautiful, then I would switch but there are a couple I’m not that keen on, one in particular looks far too modern for me.
For now I am sticking with a mixed collection and when I decide I want a new classic I will go with the edition of that individual book that I think is prettiest. Maybe eventually I will decide to swap out some books to make a matching set, I don’t know.
So, how do you decide which edition to buy? Particularly if you only like some covers, but not others in a particular edition? For those with classics, which editions do you like best and why?