- Dylan Kling
Heart of the Jedi: a buyer's guide to the secondary market
It has been nearly a week since the once lost Star Wars novel from the 90s Heart of the Jedi had its fan printing on Amazon pulled. In that time a lot of attention has been put on scalpers putting up copies on ebay for hundreds of dollars. As I've kind of become known as the Heart of the Jedi numbers guy, I took it upon myself to look at how it is selling there and see if I can find something approaching what its market price is. My intent is to use make this as a buyers guide for anyone who wants a physical copy. Though as a reminder if you absolutely just want to read this story and don't want to pay hundreds of dollars to do so, you can always do so for free at Starwarstimeline.net.
Now the first thing about ebay is if you want to know what something is worth, you do not look at what people are listing it at. Anyone can put up anything for any price and it can be easy to look at listing prices and assume that is what something is worth. The way you know what something is actually worth is to search for sold listings which you can do by clicking the option on the left side of the screen. This is important as this will tell you what other people are actually paying for these items, and therefore what you will need to pay to ensure you get it.
Doing my research I found 31 results for sold listings. One however, was for something that isn't even Heart of the Jedi and another was a $0.99 listing for charity that included the pdf link. The link to Heart of the Jed is actually included in the description so I think someone just threw it up to get it out there with any actual "sales" just going to the charity. But still, just as a PSA do not pay money for the PDF of this book. It is always available for free at Starwarstimeline.net.
That leaves 29 listings of data to be analyzed. Though technically it is 28 as there was one listing for $295 where the best offer was accepted. As ebay doesn't say what the best offer was so I did not include that into the data as I don't know how much it was actually sold for. With all of that this is what the 28 sold listings looks like in one table.
When you average all this out the current market price for Heart of the Jedi seems to be $286 or $292.06 with shipping. Though in statistics averages tend to be swayed a bit too much by outliers so often the median is a better metric to ensure the outliers aren't overly effecting the data. So with that taken into consideration, the median the price seems to be $274.64 or $292.77 with shipping. Which the following histogram shows is in the range where most of the listings are being sold for.
$500 seems to be what people keep saying is the price for this but as you can see this is the outlier and it has sold for a lot lower. The lowest being around $50 before shipping and $70 after, with a couple that went for $115 or $130 after shipping and a majority in the $200-$300 range. A look at how the price has changed over time gives us this graph
The data points are kind of spread out all over the place but the trend line is steadily increasing, meaning it is getting more expensive over time. Still there are plenty of listings for under the $300 price that are still available as well as auctions that finish up sometime this week that may bring that number down. All in all I think that the correct price is somewhere in the $270-$300 range, at least at the moment. If those still active auctions get a bit out of hand or those sub $250 listings stop being listed then I may raise my estimate. But at present, if you absolutely have to get one I wouldn't advise buying a copy for more than $300. But that's just my opinion on the data we have so far, and we'll see how the market for this continues to unfold. But to reiterate if you just want to read this story you can always do so for free at Starwarstimeline.net.
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