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Little did we know that a little book published in 1997 from a new, unknown author would bring forth an entertainment empire that rivals all others.  J.K. Rowling was a researcher and bilingual secretary for Amnesty International when she first came up with the idea of Harry Potter.  The first book, Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone was released to no fanfare.

There weren't lines around every bookstore in the world, in fact a paltry 500 first-edition books were produced.  Of those 500, 300 were sent to libraries - that means only 200 of these precious tomes were made available to the public.  There was an error on page 53 - in the collectible book world that's a huge deal.  Consider the stark contrast to the number of books in the series that have been sold worldwide, as of today - that number is close to 500 million.

One of those rare, first edition hardcovers just sold for close to $100,000 at a sale hosted at Hansons Auctioneers on Tuesday.  It was purchased by an unnamed private collector at a 1500% profit.  What's stranger still is the book sat on a shelf for 21 years collecting dust.  The seller is an English man who moved to Belgium.  He bought the book to help teach his kids English.  A friend suggested that if his copy was a first-edition it could be worth a pretty penny, and that's what led him to a $100,000.

If you'll excuse me, I'm going to check my bookshelf - just in case.

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