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News & Media

Biggest book sold for a song

Wednesday 16th November 2011

A mammoth book has added weight - literally nine kilograms - to the annual Kapiti Lions Monster Bookfair.

It was found beside the Lions collection box at Coastlands and left book fair organisers scratching their heads as to where it came from.

Published in New York in 1945, the tome would not make for light reading - all 2,772 pages are lists of other books. The “Cumulative Book Index 1938 - 1942, World List of Books in English” is a catalogue of publications from 59 countries including New Zealand and now extinct country names, such as Rhodesia and Czechoslovakia.

Lions spokesman Joe Franklin said they were puzzled as to how the "monster" book came to be in Kapiti in the first place. He said Meg Bailey of the collections development section of the National Library described it as a librarian’s working tool and there are copies held in the National Library and the Alexander Turnbull Library. It is part of a series and editions were published from 1899 to 1999 when the information became available online.

The monster book was bought by 14-year-old Josh MacKinnon for $2.00.

“I saw it and I just liked how big it was,” the Raumati South teenager said.

Photo: What a whopper! Jean Tolra checks out the monster book left in Coastlands. Courtesy of Kapiti Observer


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