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Last Updated:  Wednesday, 2 April, 2003, 19:37 GMT 20:37 UK
Charity bargain sells for 600
The valuable book
First editions at the shop usually fetch between 10 and 20
A book which last year sat on the shelf of a charity shop priced at 99p has sold for 600.

The valuable novel was a 1925 first edition of Virginia Woolf's Mrs Dalloway.

It was brought into the Oxfam shop in Seaford, East Sussex, last autumn, as part of a bundle of books - but nobody can remember who by.

The shop's manager raised the price from 99p after realising what the hardback was and just how valuable it might be.

'Unexceptional looking'

It was eventually bought by a book dealer.

Shop manager Julian Peterson said: "It was an unexceptional looking book, but when I went back to it I thought 'oh'.

"It was published by Hogarth Press, 1925, and I found it was a first edition.

" I thought 'It'll be worth a bit more than 99p'."

Although it did not take Mr Peterson long to work out the book was valuable, he was still surprised when the dealer paid 600 for it.

He said: "I was flabbergasted.

Nicole Kidman
Nicole Kidman won an Oscar as Virginia Woolf

"As we've started selling more interesting books we've had more people coming in looking for more interesting books that they wouldn't necessarily find everywhere else.

"And people have started giving us more interesting books - we do get quite a few first editions, but usually they're worth between 10 and 20."

Mrs Dalloway was the basis for Oscar-winning film The Hours, which starred Nicole Kidman as Virginia Woolf.

It told the story of the author as she wrote the novel and won Kidman the Oscar for best actress in last month's ceremony.

Virginia Woolf, who died in 1941, lived in Rodmell in East Sussex, just a few miles from the shop where her valuable first edition very briefly sat on the shelf on offer for just 99p.




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