Christmas Books

So continuing our no nonsense so no disappointments way of ‘doing’ Christmas gifts, I also got quite a few books which I had seen over the past couple of months and asked Jack to buy them for me and put them away for Christmas. I always forget exactly what has been bought so it’s the only way of getting a good surprise as far as I’m concerned.

The Grateful Sparrow cover

Here are a few of them, these ones are all children’s books:

The Grateful Sparrow by Angela Thirkell.

This is a children’s book – possibly the first she ever wrote and the only children’s one – and is apparently quite difficult to get a hold of but Jack got it for me at a very reasonable price from ebay. My copy is a 1935 publication and has 24 illustrations by Ludwig Richter. It does say that the tales are taken from the German by Angela Thirkell and the dedication is to the memory of the Brothers Grimm, Hans Christian Andersen, Berthold Auerbach and their translators, known and unknown. So it would seem that this book is more of a compilation put together by Angela Thirkell, rather than actually written by her. The illustrations are quite nice in a Germanic sort of way.

The Story of Peter Pan cover

The Story of Peter Pan by J.M. Barrie.

I have quite a collection of various Peter Pan editions, including a Mabel Lucy Atwell illustrated one, but when I saw this one at Ingliston fair, I snapped it up for all of £2. It’s illustrated by Alice B. Woodward, whom I hadn’t heard of but I like her work, especially the front cover. It was first issued in 1914 but my edition is from 1951.

Butter Scotia cover

Butterscotia (A Cheap Trip to Fairyland) by Edward Abbott Parry and illustrated by Archie MacGregor. I first saw this book in an antiquarian bookshop near York Minster but it was £30 which is more than I would normally pay for a book. I had a look on the internet and got it a lot cheaper. I feel slightly guilty about it because if the bookshop has disappearred the next time I’m in York I’ll feel that I’ve contributed to putting them out of business. But on the other hand we don’t have money to fling about and it doesn’t seem to be available as an ebook although I’ve just realised that it has been reprinted in paperback fairly recently. It is obviously influenced by Alice in Wonderland and seems to be good fun from what I’ve read of it. My copy is an 1896 one, complete with pull out map.

More Christmas books tomorrow.

6 thoughts on “Christmas Books

  1. What lovely Christmas gifts. Do you have a picture of your library? You seem to have many interesting and historic books from Jack. Do you go to the Old Town Bookshop in Edinburg?

    • Lorraine,
      We used to go to the Old Town Bookshop a lot as we went to the Grassmarket once a month, the Edinburgh Writers’ Group met nearby in The Last Drop pub, so called because it is close to where the old gibbet was situated! The shop isn’t very big though and I’ve always been luckier at the Stockbridge bookshops and the ones close to Edinburgh Uni at The Meadows. I’ve packed quite a lot of my books away, prior to downsizing (we hope) but I’ll take some photos of my bookcases soon.

  2. I love the cover art on the second two books. As an Alice fan, I think I’d like the Butterscotia book. I’ve never heard of it and will look for the reprint. I’ll bet that yours has nicer illustrations, though. And I didn’t know that Angela Thirkell had written a children’s book. The things you learn ….

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