THERE are few shops in York city centre where you can walk in with £100,000 in your pocket and leave with just one Christmas present and no change.

But venture into Fossgate and you'll find a Santa's Grotto of rare finds collected from around the world by book dealer James Hallgate.

The latest catalogue to come from his business Lucius Books features legendary literature including the best first edition copy of Jane Austin's Emma in the world, one of the most expensive dust jackets in 20th century book collecting, and a first edition James Bond previously owned by the man behind Ian Fleming's iconic character.

Boasting a collection of 186 lots, Lucius Books' eighth catalogue fetches a total of more than £691,000, ranging from £35 for books in a railway series by the Rev W Awdry to the £100,000 star feature.

The six figured price tag accompanies a rare, UK first edition of F Scott Fitzgerald's The Great Gatsby.

One of only 1,500 copies to be printed by Chatto and Windus publishers in 1926, the book features a rare version of what Mr Hallgate describes as a "critically iconic dust jacket".

Mr Hallgate said: "We got this edition from a private sale after it turned up in a house in Santa Fe in Mexico.

"The dust jacket is iconic in terms of 20th century design, but for us it's really exciting to have one of the rare English editions."

It's not the highest priced item however that has Mr Hallgate has cited as his favourite catalogue item.

That accolade is bestowed upon what the catalogue describes as "an astonishing survival" of a first edition Emma.

Priced at £97,500, the Jane Austin classic comes in three volumes with the publisher's original boards.

Mr Hallgate said: "This is probably the best copy in the world; it's in entirely original condition still with the paper boards.

"Back in those days a customer would buy the book and send it to their binder to be bound in leather. This copy escaped the binder.

"It's my favourite piece in the catalogue as it has lasted nearly 200 years in untouched, original condition. There isn't a single one in the world that will look like that.

"While copies of Emma in the original boards do appear infrequently, beautiful examples in this entirely untouched condition are of great rarity."

The book surfaced in a castle in Scotland, and bears an ownership inscription of Lady M Dalrymple. Coincidentally a Lady Dalrymple appears in Jane Austin's novel Persuasion, completed in the year of Emma's publication.

The third highest priced item in the catalogue is a signed, first edition of Ian Fleming's Casino Royale for £80,000.

The first in the Bond series, this copy of Casino Royal previously belonged to one of Mr Fleming's closest friends Robert Harling.

Mr Hallgate said: "This copy is inscribed to Robert by Ian Fleming himself.

"Not only was Robert a typesetter who later designed the typeface of many later novels, he was a close friend who is widely known as being Ian Fleming's inspiration behind the James Bond character.

"It's a fabulous association; its affectively the author's gift to his character."