Would you spend $1995 on Ice and Fire?

This eBay listing is for a set of all five ASOIAF books, each a first edition hardcover signed by GRRM himself.  The “Buy It Now” price is $1995.95.  This set isn’t up for auction, but the seller has set up a “Make an Offer” option.

While obtaining this collection would certainly unlock a “True Nerd” achievement, I don’t think I could ever drop $2K on signed books, unless maybe if I had all the gold in Casterly Rock.  Also, it doesn’t feel as special if GRRM didn’t sign them for me.  George wasn’t able to personalize books at the A Dance with Dragons signing I attended, but it still felt special because I had a few brief moments of contact with him.  Waiting in a bookstore for five hours was a labor of love, and the signed book was my trophy.  Somehow spending a crazy amount of money for a signature feels like cheating.

There’s something else about ASOIAF that doesn’t seem congruent with spending two grand on signed copies.  ASOIAF is one of the most successful series I have ever read.  It defies genre, breaks down cliches and stereotypes and has something to appeal to everyone.  Those very things make it seem, in my mind, like a series of “books for the people.”  While well-written, with a complex plot, extreme amount of detail and a sophisticated set of themes, ASOIAF is not bourgeois.  It’s gritty and in-your-face, much more working class than aristocratic, which is ironic considering most of its characters are noble lords and ladies.  Perhaps the fact that I classify it that way makes me reject any notion of spending thousands of hard-earned dollars on signed copies.

Would you consider buying this?  Comment with any reasons why or why not.

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