Sunday, February 22, 2009

"You freakish homunculus": Henry Arthur Jones's "Saints and Sinners"

Oscar Wilde once observed that there are three rules to being a successful playwright: “The first rule is not to write like Henry Arthur Jones; the second and third rules are the same.” The unfortunate target of Wilde’s biting remark, Henry Arthur Jones (1851-1929) was the author of numerous late nineteenth-century English dramas, including The Dancing Girl, The Middleman, Judah, and Wealth.

This book is a vellum-bound first edition of Jones’s five-act play Saints and Sinners, A New and Original Drama of

Modern English Middle-Class Life. This is a first edition of the play, published by Macmillan and Company, London and New York, in August 1891, and printed by R. & R. Clark of Edinburgh. The vellum is in great shape and all four original leather ties are intact; in fact, many of the pages in the volume are still uncut (when books are printed from full-size sheets of paper, the sheets are folded to create the proper page sizes and must be cut--usually along the top edge--to be separated; most modern books come machine-cut from the printer, but some classy volumes still call for the reader to own his or her own page-cutter). The pages are of handmade paper, bearing a maker’s watermark that seems to be a highly ornamental set of initials (“J & C”?). Only 100 copies of this extremely rare first edition were printed. To add to the rarity of this particular copy, it is signed by the author on the recto of the second (blank) leaf: 

Dear Mr Woodruff, 

faithfully yours

/ Henry Arthur Jones

I haven’t been able to get an estimated value for this item because no other dealers online seem to be selling a comparable copy; most other sellers listing a “first edition” of this play are actually selling the second issue of the first edition (the true first edition was the limited editions series of 100 on handmade paper and bound in vellum).

The book begins with four unnumbered leafs, a leaf with the half-title on the recto and a printer’s ornament on the verso, followed by the title page leaf with the limited edition statement on the verso. The author’s preface (dated “London, 14th April 1891) follows for 11 leaves, then a leaf with the character list and the names of the original performers of each role on the recto and scene breakdown on verso (and the claim that the play runs precisely 2 hours and 38 minutes on the stage). Above the character list is a statement regarding performance provenance: “Produced first at the Theatre Royal, Margate, on Monday 22nd September 1884; and at the Vaudeville Theatre, London, on 25th September 1884, filling the bill nightly until Easter 1885.” Why the long delay between the premiere and publication (7 years!) is beyond me; if you are interested in more details about the performance run, the website dedicated to Victorian actress Elizabeth J. Phillips has a thorough page documenting the production

All of this preliminary material is in gathering A. The body of the play itself covers gatherings B through the first part of I; each of the five acts has an appropriate subtitle. The remainder of gathering I through K contains an appendix titled “Religion and the Stage”, an essay by Jones that first appeared in the January 1885 issue of The Nineteenth Century review and that took the occasion of his play’s lengthy run (it was up for a remarkable 200 nights; despite its lukewarm reception by critics its scandalous depiction of middle-class religion in a small English town no doubt attracted curious audience members) to descant on the merits of permitting theatrical productions that examine “religious questions”. In the essay, Jones lambasts the phenomenon of theatrical censorship, from Shakespeare’s day to the present, reserving particular ire for puritanical arbiters of taste such as the late Thomas Bowdler (whose editions of Shakespeare’s plays eviscerated from the texts anything potentially bawdy, scandalous, or inappropriate to be read aloud in the presence of women and children gives us today the phrase “to bowdlerize”).

There are no markings of readers in my copy, but some owner (perhaps “Mr. Woodruff”) has cut some of the pages open. The pattern of these opened pages may suggest what parts the reader bothered to look at and what he decided to skip over: the half-title, title page, preface, and first four leaves of Act I are opened; the rest of the play remains uncut until Act V, which is entirely opened (did Mr. Woodruff find the first scene tedious but, suspecting Jones would perhaps ask him what he thought of the play, skip to the end to find out how it was resolved?). The first two and last three leaves of the appendix are also opened, but the middle eight are uncut (again, just reading the top and tail of the work?).

About Jones (shown below in a press photograph, c. 1880), Martha Bellinger, in her 1927 A Short History of the Drama, observed: 

Like Pinero, Mr. Jones learned his technique from the French. In 1884 he adapted Ibsen's Doll's House for the English public under the title Breaking a Butterfly. It would be a bold person today who would offer any "adaptation" whatever of Ibsen, and with such a title! At the time, however, adaptations were in order, and Ibsen was then only another European playwright, not a theatrical prophet. Mr. Jones continued his work with domestic comedy and social pieces, including The Masqueraders and The Bauble Shop. In 1896 he wrote Michael and His Angel, generally considered his strongest drama. It is a study of small-town people, concerned with the expiation of guilt. It is both sentimental and romantic, with the solemn attitude towards sexual irregularity which generally characterized the Victorian writer. Mr. Jones, however, has shown a kind of evangelistic spirit in regard to the stage: a perception of its possible nobility and truth, and a desire to contribute to its ethical and moral value. 

And from Alice Fort and Herbert Kates’s 1935 Minute History of the Drama:

The circumstances surrounding the early life of Henry Arthur Jones would generally be considered anything but favorable to a successful dramatic career. He was the son of a Buckinghamshire farmer. What education he received was brief and acquired in a local grammar school. At 13 he went "into business" and was a commercial traveller until he was 30. The people among whom he was raised believed that drama was the invention of the devil and that those who went to the theater were bound straight for perdition. If Jones became a dramatist it was because the urge within him was so strong he couldn't help it. His first play was written when he was 16, two years before he ever saw the inside of a theater. His first produced play, Only Round the Corner, was staged in 1878. The melodrama, The Silver King, written in collaboration with Henry Herman and produced in 1882, assured his position as a dramatist. 

Henry Arthur Jones belongs to that period sometimes referred to as the "Victorian Transition." It was the period when drama was trying to free itself from its inherited superficialities and to become a part of contemporary life. In 1884, Jones made an attempt at serious drama in his Saints and Sinners. It was hooted by the first-night audience and condemned by the press. Discouraged, Jones returned to melodrama. 

In 1896, when London had become to a certain extent "Ibsen-conscious," Jones made another attempt at serious drama with Michael and His Lost Angel. Again he was hooted by the audience and condemned by the critics. It was too forward looking for that generation and not sufficiently plain spoken for the next, as a later attempt at a revival proved. In the opinion of Jones himself and of some of his commentators it deserves to be rated as his best effort. The following year, however, he returned to the polite, superficial comedy with The Liars, following it in 1900 with Mrs. Dane's Defense. The Lie had its premiere in New York in 1914 and did not reach the London stage until 1923. There even so capable an actress as Sybil Thorndike could not save it from vitriolic comment from the pen of the renowned English dramatic critic, James Agate. 

Henry Arthur Jones made a start with the new dramatic movement. He was never able, however, to shake off the influence of that early Victorian period when his work began, nor to achieve a real success with the newer trend of dramatic thought.

Finally, Barrett Clark’s entry on Jones in the 1915 British and American Drama of Today relates:

To Henry Arthur Jones, more than to any other single force, [was] due that Renaissance and "uplift" -- let the term be accepted in its best sense -- of the English drama [of his day]. Jones carried on the tradition of Congreve and Sheridan in high comedy. His best work, with the exception of Michael and His Lost Angel, consists of comedies of manners. The Liars, The Case of Rebellious Susan, and Dolly Reforming Herself, satires on contemporary society, are among the finest character plays of the day. Jones's work is characterized by close observation of the foibles of the upper classes and the aristocracy of England; a keen sense of humor -- as opposed to the cleverness and wit of Wilde and Pinero -- which brings him much closer to the English Restoration dramatists than any other of his day; and a keen sense of dramatic construction. Jones [wrote] many comedies, but his melodramas -- especially The Silver King and The Middleman -- and his tragic play, Michael and His Lost Angel -- must be taken into account in any estimate of the dramatist's total output.

In addition to being a dramatist, Jones wrote (somewhat heatedly) on political topics, particularly “from the right” in response to H. G. Wells and George Bernard Shaw. One such work was My Dear Wells: a Manual for Haters of England (1921), a collection of open letters to Wells originally published in the New York Times. Wells repeatedly declined to respond to Jones, writing to the Times: "I do not believe that Mr. Jones has ever read a line that I have written. But he goes on unquenchably, a sort of endless hooting. I would as soon argue with some tiresome, remote and inattentive foghorn"; and later, in 1926, in the preface to Mr Belloc Objects: "For years I have failed to respond to Mr. Henry Arthur Jones, who long ago invented a set of opinions for me and invited me to defend them with an enviable persistence and vigour."

Another sample of Jones’s political (sort of...) writing is his epic response to Shaw's manifesto in opposition to the First World War, Common Sense About the War: "The hag Sedition was your mother, and Perversity begot you. Mischief was your midwife and Misrule your nurse, and Unreason brought you up at her feet - no other ancestry and rearing had you, you freakish homunculus, germinated outside of lawful procreation."

Friday, February 20, 2009

More on the "Pronouncing Bible"

In response to "Hieronmio", here is a larger version of the image in the post on the "Pronouncing Bible", showing some of Alger's markings.

As the subtitle of the book indicates, Alger was actually following the pronunciation guidelines of John Walker. Walker's work on proper "American" pronunciation began around 1790 and extended for the next forty years, during which time he authored numerous influential lexicographic works such as The Elements of Elocution, a rhyming dictionary, and his long-standing Critical Pronouncing Dictionary and Expositor of the English Language (cited by Alger). By the time the third edition of Noah Webster's ever-popular American Dictionary of the English Language appeared in 1830, Walker's "Key" to the pronunciation of "Greek, Latin, and Scripture Proper Names" (also cited by Alger) was popular enough to be prominently credited on the title page of the book.

Walker achieved his ascendancy through constant republication of his works and by allowing other reference book-writers to incorporate his material (striking an early blow for open source?); Esther Sheldon, writing in PMLA in 1947, counted at least a dozen dictionaries and language reference works of the first half of the nineteenth century that openly used Walker's keys.

Interestingly, while many other pronunciation experts at the time believed that their science was meant to be prescriptive rather than descriptive (that is, their job was to tell people how to properly pronounce words and not simply to record how people actually were pronouncing them), Walker pressed moderately in the opposite direction, believing that proper pronunciation is simply a function of social class combined with education. To that end, his records most often reveal how the more educated or upper class speakers of turn-of-the-century America pronounced their words. As Henry Wyld, author of History of Modern Colloquial English puts it: "He [Walker] appeals constantly to the habits of our most elegant speakers, that is, to a real type of existing English, and he must be held to mirror the usage of his day among refined and learned, and though to a less extent perhaps, among fashionable [speakers]." Wyld observes that Walker "does not set out to 'reform' English speech by destroying everything that is traditional and habitual."

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Responding to "The Curse of Cursive"

I told myself I would not use this blog for topics unrelated to my book collection, but I just had to rant about Jessica Bennett's article in the latest Newsweek ("The Curse of Cursive"). I concur with her opinion that compelling children to learn to handwrite in cursive is archaic and unhelpful and that efforts to preserve that particular chirographic form are more emotional than educational (consider how mutable various hands were in the manuscript culture of early modern England, where writers would employ secretary English and round Italic often mixed within the same word).

However, her claim that "penmanship has been edging toward oblivion for years" is overstated. Her suggestion (quoting Oberlin College Professor of English Anne Trubek) that handwriting is an "historical blip" among writing technologies is woefully historically inaccurate. For one thing, as Peter Beal, Randall McLeod, Walter Ong, and a host of other excellent bibliographic scholars have demonstrated since the 1970s, the ascension of one technology of communication does not immediately (or completely) displace the prior technologies; indeed, the new technology often relies upon the older in order to be successfully adopted (early printed books mimicked the look of scribal manuscripts, just like early silent films mimicked the look of staged theatrical performances, or early word processing softwares replicated the fonts used on typewriters).

I would briefly contest her suggestion, also, that intelligibility of content is unrelated to the form in which that content is presented. The ease with which we can communicate via text message, email, and (yes) blog has led, ironically, to a decrease in our command of language and made us more willing to commit egregiously stupid errors of usage ("No, you cannot 'haz' a cheeseburger."). If the study of book history has proven anything in the last 20 years, it is that content and form are inextricably married; as our reliance on mechanized means of communication that allow for instantaneous and yet coldly ephemeral exchange increases, our concern for creating durable, high quality, articulate content will shrink.

There is another reason we might express a little more concern over the purported decline of handwriting, and I write this now as a scholar of manuscript culture as well as book history. Related to the inseparability of form and content is the wealth of primary source information to be derived from studying the palaeographic details of a written document. As someone who has had experience working with manuscripts from the 17th century and deriving important conclusions about them from textual features alone, I can contest with relative confidence Bennett's suggestion that objections to the disappearance of handwriting are not "historical". The assumption that she makes (using the example of the Declaration of Independence) is that handwritten documents are as homogenous in their form and features as typed documents (an understandable assumption no doubt deriving from the way modern education drills students in consistency in the drawing of letter forms). Any examination of a manuscript document -- a letter, a note, a legal form, a journal, a literary work, even a piece of music -- quickly reveals the fallacy of this assumption. Shakespearean scholars, for example, have found a wealth of information in the single surviving manuscript page in his hand ("Hand D" from the play Sir Thomas More, shown here); without this, there would be a considerable deficit in our knowledge of how Shakespeare's writing process may have worked. When the use of handwriting goes, so too will the ability of future scholars to study and learn from the unique personality, emotion, and sense that handwriting can convey (and that mechanical writing cannot).

I would like to conclude, however, by returning to that phrase "historical blip" and its tacit arrogance about the inferiority of the handwritten medium. Lest we forget, in the roughly 4,500 years that mankind has been using non-pictorial symbols as linear signifiers, handwriting has been (and still remains) the dominant mode of communication (some scholars estimate that as much as 80% of written materials produced in the United States in the last decade were written by hand and not machine). The moveable-type printing press has been in use for about 560 years, or roughly 12% of homo literatus's history; the typewriter for 180 years (or 4% of our writing history); and the personal computer for 33 years (a whopping 0.7%). I do not contest the claim that these mechanized forms of writing will become our most historically prevalent means of communication, but to shrug off the medium that for 88% of our history has been the dominant means of literary expression as an "historical blip" is to betray a blindness to history.

I enjoyed Bennet's brief article, with the exception of that one component of her argument. That particular component, however, I found to be the most fallacious and even offensive thing that I've read in Newsweek since... well, since Yuval Levin's idiotic suggestion--on page 30 of the same issue--that Rush Limbaugh is actually good for our country.

Monday, February 16, 2009

Israel Alger's 1825 "Pronouncing Bible"

One of the advantages to living in an area with several colleges is the preponderance of very good used bookstores. In downtown Amherst there’s a hidden gem of a second-hand books store called Valley Books (“hidden” because you have to go around to the building’s rear parking lot and down into the basement to find it) that has a great little collection of antiquarian, rare, and just plain odd titles. For nearly a year, whenever I visited there I eyed this particular volume before finally springing for it several months ago.

This is a first edition of “The Pronouncing Bible”, or by its full title, The Holy Bible, containing the Old and New Testaments; Translated Out of the Original Tongues, and with the Former Translations Diligently Compared and Revised, the Proper Names of Which, and Numerous Other Words, Being Accurately Accented in the Text, and Divided into Syllables, as they Ought to be Pronounced, According to the Orthoepy of John Walker, as Contained in his Critical Pronouncing Dictionary and Key to the Classical Pronunciation of Greek, Latin, and Scripture Proper Names.

The book was edited by Israel Alger and published in 1825 by Lincoln & Edmands, at 59 Washington Street in Boston, MA. It was printed in stereotype by T. H. Carter & Company. The binding is a very dried and cracked leather (the spine has lost some of the brittle leather along the very top edge, no doubt caused by being pulled off the shelf improperly for 184 years). The pages measure 13 cm x 21 cm. It was printed in gatherings of six, but the signatures (where they appear) are often incorrect. I won’t try to count the number of leaves (this is one of those satisfyingly hefty, tight books), but it has a thickness of 7 cm. The “Old Testament” (or, more properly, Hebrew Testament) comes to 714 numbered pages; the “New Testament” (that is, Christian Testament) is 218.

There are two unnumbered flyleaves at the front: one is the typical pastedown on the back of the front board, the other is blank. This is followed by a leaf with the illustrated title page on the recto and on the verso the copyright notice issued by John Davis, clerk of “the district of Massachusetts”, and an “Adver-tisement” (dated March 4, 1825) in which the editor justifies his decision to present pronunciations. This is followed by another prefatory leaf providing an “Explanatory Key to the Regular Native Sounds of the English Vowels” and some rules on “Irregular Vowel Sounds, Characters, &c.” on the recto and verso; the verso also contains a table of contents to the various books of both Testaments. Between the two Testaments there are two unnumbered pages: the first is headed “Family Record” and has a space for “Marriages”, two spaces for “Births”, and one for “Deaths”; the second has an entirely new illustrated title page for the “New Testament” on the recto and on the verso a “Table of Measures, &c.” and “A Table of Offices and Conditions of Men” (both to explain biblical terms for the reader).

Finally, at the back there is a leaf (numbered p. 219 and 220) of “Recommendations” -- similar to the endorsement quotations we often find on modern dust-jackets from famous or particularly qualified individuals. In this case the individuals are all pastors, rectors, and principals of schools and seminaries (all Protestant, almost entirely from the Boston area). At the very bottom of the verso of this page there are publisher’s advertisements for The Pronouncing Testament, The Pronouncing Introduction to Murray’s English Reader, and The Pronouncing English Reader. A manicule beneath these points to the following sentence: “In these editions of the above works, it has been the object of the publishers to elevate the standard of school-books, in typographical execution. The works have been beautifully stereotyped, and are printed on fine paper, and handsomely bound. N B. The School Committee of Boston have approbated the Pronouncing Introduction and the Pronouncing English Reader, and directed these editions to be used in the Publick Schools in the city.” Two blank fly-leaves and a paste-down conclude the book. The estimated value is $200 to $300.

The reason for an entirely separate title page at the head of the “New Testament” is that Alger had earlier printed (through the same publisher) the Pronouncing New Testament as a separate book in 1822.

The Dunham Bible Museum at Houston Baptist University states the following: “The reverend Israel Alger (1787-1825) graduated from Brown University in 1811, later receiving the A.M. degree and establishing a private school in Boston of which he was a master. He published a pronouncing New Testament in 1822 and a complete Bible in 1825, the later an octavo volume of 932 pages with thirty small engravings, two to a page, with frontispieces for each of the Testaments. The intention of Alger, stated in the advertisement for the New Testament was ‘to divide and accent the proper names, as they occur in the text, and in such a manner as will best show their true pronunciation [and thus] facilitate the just and proper reading go the Sacred Scriptures’. As an aid to pronunciation it met with such warm reception that it was kept in print for thirty-five years, the last edition appearing in 1861. The invention of stereotyping enabled the publisher to retain printing plates made from the pages of handset type for future editions...” The claim that the book contains 30 small engravings puzzles me, since my copy does not have these. I’m unable to locate any evidence of excised pages (as often happens with old books, prints are sometimes cut out to be sold or framed separately, often leaving the inner edge of the page still in the binding and a jump in pagination); perhaps mine is actually a later issue of the first edition (though why the publisher would want to remove illustrations is beyond me; usually subsequent issues and editions add illustrations).

Alger’s stated intention in developing “The Pronouncing Bible” was to enable readers of the book, particularly those who are not “men of science and elocution”, to be able to fluently read passages aloud without tripping over or misconstruing proper names, technical terms, or foreign words. His target audience included both “schools and families”. This practice was not isolated to works such as the Bible, of course (I have in my collection a first edition “pronouncing” Vicar of Wakefield, for example), but it does exemplify a particular moment in time when the reading public (especially for such canonical works as The Bible) was viewed as primarily patriarchal -- that is, a public in which the father/husband/teacher would read aloud to those who either could not read themselves or who could not fully “appreciate” the text if they were to read it silently. I find it slightly ironic that these patriarchal readers would, themselves, require a corrective aid (in the form of a pronunciation key) in order to assist them in carrying off their enterprise and to make them appear more educated.

In my copy there is little evidence of readership; there are no marginal marks or annotations that I have been able to spot (though one page in the Book of Joshua has its corner turned down, perhaps accidentally) and it is generally in good condition (though some pages are worn and there is foxing throughout; the slight spine splitting that occurs around the start of the "New Testament" section might suggest either that the book was often opened to this point or simply that, being near the middle, it was the weakest point of the book's hinge). Even the “Family Records” page is blank. This could bespeak either a lack of use or, conversely, extensive but highly careful (respectful) use. As noted above, the broken bit on the top of the spine suggests that it was frequently pulled off the shelf improperly. Two pages are torn and have been repaired with modern clear tape. The only mark of ownership is on the recto of the blank fly-leaf: at the top there appears a thick brown ink inscription reading “Jonathan Cowls” in a late 19th century hand.

The fact that this book once belonged to Jonathan Cowls will mean nothing to those of you who don’t live in the Amherst, MA area. In the Pioneer Valley of Massachusetts, however, the name of Cowls is significant. In 1731 Jonathan Cowls Sr. moved to Amherst (he helped found the town) and ten years later bought the farm that is still today the family homestead and business headquarters for Cowls Building Supply. He started a lumber harvesting and milling business that is today still run by the Cowls family (now 9th generation), making it the 12th oldest continuously-operating family-owned business in America. The Cowls family were Revolutionary War soldiers, farmers, builders of roads, and founders of churches in the western Massachusetts region throughout the 18th and 19th centuries. Jonathan Senior’s son was Jonathan Junior (who founded the North Church in Amherst); his son was (surprisingly) also named Jonathan. Given the date of the book (1825) it was likely one of these two who owned my copy of the “Pronouncing Bible”.

Sunday, February 15, 2009

Changing Format

It has been suggested to me that I try a more narrative format for my posts. While the layout used for the Marlowe edition was informative, it has apparently struck at least one of my (vast legion of) readers as cold and impersonal.

Well, those of you who know me know that I am certainly not impersonal.

Cold? Maybe.

Monday, February 9, 2009

1909 Temple Dramatists "Doctor Faustus"

Title: The Tragical History of Doctor Faustus

Author: Christopher Marlowe

Genre: Drama

Imprint: London: J. M. Dent and Company (Aldine House), 1909

Edition: Seventh (first in 1897)

Series: The Temple Dramatists

Editor: Israel Gollancz, M.A.

Physical Features: 10.5cm x 13cm. Bound in green leather; spine faded with gilded ornaments and text (“Marlowe’s Faustus”); cover gilded impression of ornament (open book with “DENT” in middle). Top edge of paper gilded. Pink marker ribbon. 67 leaves.

Contents: blank fly-leaf; series half-title with illustration note on verso; blank with copper-engraving of “Faustus after Rembrandt” on verso; tissue; title page with ornamental border with red and J. A. Symonds quotation on verso; preface (v-[xiv]) (“Early Editions”, “The Present Text”, “Source of the Plot”, “Date of Composition”, “Early Stage History”, “Brief Bibliography”); play half-title with dramatists personae on verso; play text ([1]-94); glossary (97-103); notes (104-[112]). Fonts alternates between roman (for text in both 1604 and 1616 editions) and italic (text only in 1616 edition); also, Old English black-type used for Mephistopheles's charm on Faustus in scene viii (see photo). The stage direction for the masque of the spirit of Emperor Alexander, in scene xii, is set as an inverted triangle (see photo). 

Marginalia & Markings: Thin pencil used throughout to mark speeches and passages with a vertical line in the margin or to underline individual lines. The word “bond” is pencilled next to the speech in which Faustus seals his bargain with the devil.

Estimated Assessed Value: $30 - $40

Other: Begun in 1887, the Temple Dramatists series (first published by Macmillan) aimed to produce scholarly editions of Shakespeare’s contemporaries in a format small enough to fit in the pocket and be carried anywhere. The July 1897 Publisher’s Weekly described the series as “a reprinting of old Elizabethan dramas and others representative of the earliest periods of dramatic literature in a charming dress. Such dramas as Webster’s ‘Duchess of Malfi,’ Marlowe’s ‘Edward II.,’ and Heywood’s ‘Woman Killed with Kindness,’ and other just as rare are offered to the student of out-of-the-way literature.” According to the December 1898 issue of Publisher’s Weekly, “The Temple edition of ‘Shakespeare’ and the Temple Dramatists are ideal Christmas gifts, either separately or collectively.” The series was part of many “Temple” offerings from Dent, which continued to print them into the 1930s. Gollancz was for much of its life the “general editor” and once he left the series after 1906 its quality quickly plummeted, according to Brander Matthews of Columbia University.

Sunday, February 8, 2009


Welcome to my bookcase!

Well, one of my bookcases...

Each week I hope to pull a random book from one of my old, rare, or just plain interesting book collections and post some photos and facts about it on this blog. There's no order to the selections, and quite often what I post will be just a best-guess write-up. My hope is that anyone reading this who has more information than I do about these books will post as well and help me learn some more about my collection.

Thanks for visiting, and please spread the word!

Happy reading,

"Tarquin Tar"