Welcome to my blog, featuring various pieces from my collection of Oz books, artwork and memorabilia!
Tuesday, April 15, 2008
I was asked if I would post a photo of the complete Sky Island dustjacket, so here it is. I didn't include the front and rear flaps, which are both blank. As you can see, this jacket is rough with a large chunk missing from the center of the spine. I've laid in a reproduction of the missing material. Even in this condition, I'm very happy to have this! Incidentally, there are reproductions of this dustjacket out there - so be cautious.
Dustjackets on children's books are ephemeral things - they are torn, discarded, used as book marks, anything you can think of, and generally don't survive - especially when you are dealing with 100 year old books. This is particularly true of the Oz books, which tended to be well-loved by their owners and read into rags. Also, the books had lovely covers under the jackets, so why keep the flimsy paper covering? After all, the main goal was to protect the book until it was sold.
When I started collecting the Oz books, my main interest was first state copies of the L. Frank Baum titles. (I still don't have first states of the first two books, but one of these days....) Of course, eventually I realized that I wanted the entire series, and once I worked through that, it was time for dustjackets.
Obviously, the earlier books are the more difficult to find this way. In some cases, there is only one copy known with its original jacket. I'm not too likely to ever have those copies - but there's always the chance of finding another. It's exciting for me to see a book in a Reilly & Britton dustjacket, even if it isn't a first state. There just aren't that many out there!
Posted by Bill Campbell