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Friday, 07 September 2012


I ordered two, and they have shipped. One for me, and one to give away. Haven't picked the recipient yet.
I guess I jumped quickly.

Congrats ?

I'm one of the 900 I guess, but Amazon sent me an email this morning saying I'll get my copy next Tuesday. So I guess they got the new stock earlier than expected.

As an aside, although I had heard Evans' name many times, somehow I've never seen his photos. The moment I saw the photos I knew this was someone whose photos I'd like.

Curious how much of a revelation it can be when you find out something that you really should have know about all along :)

"As an aside, although I had heard Evans' name many times, somehow I've never seen his photos. The moment I saw the photos I knew this was someone whose photos I'd like. Curious how much of a revelation it can be when you find out something that you really should have know about all along :)"

Don't feel bad--we all get to encounter things for the first time, even when they're old hat to others. As a matter of fact, I kind of envy people who are delving into the history of photography for the first time. They have a lot of pleasurable discoveries ahead of them--it's a rich lode to mine. Me, I'm to the point where I've "heard it all" in some cases not twice but ten times. That's what it feels like sometimes, anyway.


FWIW, I ordered the other day when you first posted the link, and was advised it would ship in 2-3 weeks. I awoke this morning to an email update saying I may expect delivery on 9/11. In my experience, Amazon seems to err on the worst-case when estimating shipping date for items not in stock.


I've actually spent some time researching this matter and IMO, an "ordinary photo book" that sells 5,000 copies has done far better than just well, as the typical press run for photo books these days is more like 1,500 copies, with many runs being closer to 1,000 copies than 2,000 copies.

In fact, if one wants a first-edition copy of a photo book, the general rule one should follow is to buy a copy from the very first bookseller who can deliver it, because for many in-demand books, there may not be a second chance.

I've learned this lesson myself, especially when ordering (and pre-ordering!) books at a discount through Amazon, because they sometimes won't receive enough copies to fill their pending orders and by the time they let me know, it's too late to buy a copy elsewhere without paying a premium for it.

P.S.: It appears I was one of the lucky 166, although I also paid the $23.10 price ... you win some, you lose some, eh?

Mine arrives on Tuesday! Yay!

I also had a mad rush of blood to the head and ordered Parr's "The Last Resort", Shore's "Uncommon Places" and William Eggleston's guide. Lots of reading for the winter months.

Well if it's not your fault that they're running out, I think we, as your readers, simply haven't been doing our share.

I'm not angry, I'm just disappointed!

Nikhil and Mike,

I enjoy Randal Monroe's take on this phenomenon. Many thanks Mike for introducing me to a multitude of things everyone else has already heard of.


I paid $38 (with tax) in my local bookstore. It hurt to pay such a premium, but it's important to me to support local businesses. It was their last copy save the one in the window.

Thanks for the update!

My book was dispatched today from the book depository, I hope a prompt delivery in France.

The strategic buying of books makes picking stocks look easy (although that's glib of me to say, since I don't pick stocks).

If one buys books as investments, then I agree with you. But unlike stocks, I buy photo books not for their potential to appreciate in the future (although I'll admit that possibility is usually in the back of my mind somewhere), but as things to have and enjoy in the present.

As such, I'm usually happy to buy second or third editions or -- gasp! -- even used copies, but for most the books that interest me, there are no second or third editions and never will be, and used copies are scarce because they are typically bought by people such as myself, who like the photographer's work and buy their books to have and enjoy, not to flip for a profit later.

So with many books, it's necessary to buy the first edition in order to have a copy of them, period.

P.S.: On the other hand, there are times when the quality of the photos in the later editions and reissues surpass the quality of those in the original. I have found this to be the case with the Steidl versions of Joel Sternfeld's books, so snap 'em up while you can, folks!

Wonder why they're doing it? Are they planning a show of the original images?

Mine arrived today. Despite the 'may take an additional 1-2 weeks' warning from Amazon UK it arrived in two days.

My first impression? That the photographs, in addition to being beautiful and beautifully reproduced, are technically extraordinary. So much detail and tonal richness. I've spent more time looking at small format photographers from the early-mid 20th century so perhaps my perspective on what was technically possible in the 1930s is skewed, but many of these pictures seem amazing to me. This is a book I am looking forward to getting to know very well.

I received mine from Amazon yesterday. Thank you Mike. Immediately I opened the package and spent a long time enjoying the photographs. Marvelous.

Received mine today, great images. Thanks again for the heads up.

Oh and keep the tips on similar books coming.

Just so you know, at least one of us understood the 'Vile Gossip' reference to Ms. Lindamood!

I ordered before I even finished reading the post, while Amazon showed 12 in stock. Supposedly mine has shipped for delivery Wednesday, the 12th -- while people who ordered after the 2 to 3 week warning went up (and paid less) are expecting theirs Tuesday. Maybe they live closer or paid for upgraded shipping?

Have you become photography's Oprah?


Should I check under my seat one morning and expect a nice framed print and a pack of SD cards? That would be cool.

Wonder how many Steidl Robert Frank Americans got sold cause of that same post :-)

I know I got one too!


Managed to 'order' one through your amazon uk link. Well done and thanks for the heads up on this book.

You have to admit it, Mike, that in the photography literature market, a niche market, you (and your TOP minions collectively) are a monopsonist.

More power!

I received the book yesterday so I guess I was one of the lucky 166, and the Vivian Maier book I had ordered at the same time came in today. It's going to be a nice, quiet weekend around here. Thanks again for the heads up.

Brooks Jensen wrote about print runs in his Lenswork magazine a few years ago. The only reasonably well selling photography books are instructional ones. The best monograph was at that time #2808 on Amazons best seller list. Angel Adams at 100, the best selling Adams book was # 49,568. The cost of very small print runs goes up exponentially. It makes a lot of sense to print 2000 copies instead of 1000. But selling those extra 1000 copies is very difficult for most people. For Adams or Salgado obviously a little bit easier.

My copy is on the way. Just finished reading a biography of Evans so the timing is right.

Publishers tell me that a good showing by a photo book, unless it's AA, is 800-1000 copies sold. (One of my publisher friends was quite astonished that I sold 40 copies of my self published book...)

I ordered one soon after your post too. At the time it said In Stock. Now My Orders section says "Shipping Soon" with a delivery estimate of 9.20 to 9.25.....darn.

Mine arrived today. I haven't had time to spend with it yet, but it makes a nice first impression. Please keep the book tips coming!

Ha. Spoke to soon yesterday. Amazon informed me today that mine shipped! :-)

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