Bonham's held a major auction over the weekend in Los Angeles, where it was offering a number of rare books.
Those we reported on previously included a first edition copy of Jane Austen's Emma. Austen described the heroine as someone "whom no-one but myself will much like".
Clearly not everyone agrees, as the book improved on its $8,000-10,000 estimate to sell for $10,370.
Galileo's dialogue Systema Cosmicum, likewise, sneaked past its expected price of $2,000-3,000 to reach $3,050.
The collection of John Latham's A General History of Birds turned out to be the relative bargain of the sale, falling slightly short of its $6,000 lower estimate and selling for $5,185.
Thomas Blake's Hawaiian Surfboard - the first definitive book on Hawaii's favourite sport - sold within its estimate range at $3,965.
In contrast, the first published work of Samuel Longhorne Clemens, also known as Mark Twain, titled The Celebrated Jumping Frog of Calaveras County, leapt over its $3,000-5,000 valuation to be taken home at a very respectable $6,710.
With many lots exceeding their estimates, the sale demonstrated that rare book collecting is in fine fettle.