London: Bloomsbury, 1997. First edition. First impression of the preferred hardcover issue, with all the requisite points: Bloomsbury imprint, 10-down-to-1 number line, and in the list of equipment on page 51 "1 wand" appearing twice, "Philospher's" typo on the rear board. Original matte laminated boards without a jacket. Gift inscription on half-title for a child’s birthday. Spine sunned, as often, covers otherwise bright, trivial rubbing to spine ends and tips, contents mildly toned but clean and free from library markings. A very nice copy indeed, sharp and bright.Only 500 copies of the first printing of Philosopher's Stone were issued in this hardback format, of which some 300 were taken by libraries and rendered undesirable for collectors.
Harry Potter is the most successful book franchise of all time, with over 500 million copies of the books in print, and with spin-off film and media projects worth billions. The true first edition has been no less meteoric in its rise to the top of collectors' lists for modern books. Copies consistently set new records at auction. "The books' ultimate appeal lies in the universal themes of good triumphing over evil and the importance of love. No matter what age, gender, or race you are, there is something relatable in the Harry Potter series. The series’ large fan following pioneered the way for young adult book series to turn into movie franchises. Harry Potter was among the first, and it remains the most successful to date. Indeed, the series has surpassed any other franchise as a world-wide cultural phenomenon due to the creation of theme parks and real-life quidditch teams, and the great lengths that fans go to in order to show their devotion to the series" (McFadden). Near Fine (Item #4395)