We all usually have persons from those we’ve been affected during the character building process. Regardless whether they’re real or fictional. Often in various areas. As for me, (Lieutenant) Columbo, Tetsuo Ishidate (actor) or Mick Jagger come into mind first, but for Literature area, Osamu Dazai from Japan, Gilbert Keith Chesterton from UK and Stanislaw Lem from Poland do. The three have common characteristics, outstanding sense of humor and philosophy. Chesterton is known as one of the fathers of Detective Nobel, though he was originally a Conservative critic, had left enormous number of works mainly for literally criticism. Takeshi Kitano, a famous comedian and a film director, is one of the fans of him.

Okay so…about Lem. He’s generally known as the original author of “Solaris”, the film by Tarkovsky(1972) and by Soderbergh(2002), and of “The Congress”(2013), or as a Science Fiction writer, meanwhile he was a doctor and a scientist who left a large amount of novels and Technology Criticisms. He was considered to be one of the 20th century’s greatest geniuses from Poland, and also was nominated for the Nobel Prize for Literature several times, but unfortunately passed away in 2006 at 84.

I’ve been an enthusiast for him since I was a student, so that it’s quite natural for me to possess all of his books, but recently I was sooooo surprised when searching for his books on Amazon unintentionally. They are being dealt at extraordinary premium prices.

First of all, pocket sized paperback “DZIENNIKI GWIAZOOWE”, originally JPY500, is priced at JPY2,300. Other many paperbacks has similar premium more or less. Especially “WIZJA LOKALNA” is JPY5,900 ! “KONGRES FUTUROLOGICZNY”, once JPY1,500, is JPY8,000 !! The highest premium price JPY32,800 goes to “OPOVIADANIA Vol.2”, a paperback about 8mm thick. It means JPY4,100 per 1mm. I don’t think this is a unit price for any material on the Earth any more. If I put all of my Lem books to the hammer, it would amount to no less than JPY100,000. Is this a novel Internet swindle to trick some curious fools ? Or a stylish manner of bonus for me from God of Literature ?

These literary gems of his, which had conducted my character building in my younger days and which I’ve been keeping with attempting to enjoy those humor again in my old age, would help me even financially when my declining years. This is the reason why We Still Should Read Books.





手始めに、元々¥500位の文庫本「泰平ヨンの回想記」が¥2,300。多寡はあるものの、他の何冊もの文庫本もそんな感じ。中でも「泰平ヨンの現場検証」は¥5,900!¥1,500位だった「未来学会議」が¥8,000!! 極め付きは、厚さ約8ミリの文庫本「素晴らしいレムの世界vol.2」が、なんと¥32,800!!!…1ミリあたり¥4,100って、もはや地球上の物質とは思えない単価である。私の蔵書を全てオークションに掛ければ、総額10万は下らない計算だ。これは一部の物好きを狙った新手のネット詐欺か、あるいは、文学の神様の粋なボーナスか。



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