About Us

Information about btc, our history, policies — all your questions answered.

About BTC Images

Where do you get your book images and are they authentic?
The images on this site come from our large archive of high resolution rare book images, which we began assembling in the mid-1990s when we started to offer illustrated catalogs. All book images on our site, unless otherwise specified, are photographs of real first editions which we have had in our inventory. Likewise most of our reference photos come from our large reference library or books we have offered for sale. If you see our images being used by someone else to sell a book they claim to have, you have probably discovered a fraudulent bookseller. If you encounter someone who claims that we took their book image, you have definitely discovered a fraudulent bookseller.

Why do some of your signed books have images of the signature, and others don't?
Scanning the cover of a book doesn't take very long, and our customers tell us it is very helpful in deciding whether to purchase a particular copy. Unfortunately, scanning anything inside the book can take quite a bit longer because some care needs to be taken with the book's binding (often we have to photograph the interior using a special set-up). In addition, the two images have to be made into a composite for our system, which also takes time. We do this when we can, and particularly if we feel the inscription is especially noteworthy or the signature rare, but we are unable to do this for all books.

Can you send me an image of the signature?
We assess requests for signatures on a case-by-case basis depending on the strength of the book's binding, the nature of the request, etc. All our signatures are guaranteed to be authentic and we back this with the ABAA Code of Ethics. We do not make a regular habit of authenticating signatures in books we don't own for other people - if you want to compare something you own to an item in our stock, chances are we will not be able to help you unless you are seriously interested in selling the book to us.

Can you scan the copyright pages of books for me so I can see if my copy is a first edition?
Well, we appreciate that you asked an honest question. Unfortunately, it's one that we get asked just a bit too often, and this is not a request that we can usually accommodate. The good news is, at the rate things are going, Google or Amazon may do it for you.