Thursday 22 April 2010

New Arrivals

Couple of new acquisitions turned up today. One of them I've already mentioned: a 1991 Allison & Busby paperback edition of the twelfth Richard Stark/Parker novel, The Sour Lemon Score. But here it is again for good measure:

The other new arrival was this:

A US first edition of Backflash, the eighteenth Parker novel (and second in the second run of books, following Comeback), published in hardback by Mysterious Press in 1998. I mentioned before I wasn't terribly keen on the jacket design that Mysterious Press introduced for the US Parker novels with this book, and that I intended to collect the UK Robert Hale editions instead. But I saw this for sale on eBay from the UK, for cheaper than the Robert Hale edition, and thought, sod it.

And actually, now I have the book, that jacket is more interesting than I first reckoned. Designers Jackie Merri Meyer and Rachel McClain have taken Daniel Pelavin's hand-lettering and illustration and slapped them onto what looks like a file or envelope, complete with staple at the bottom. The whole file has then been shifted so it looks skewiff, and the edges blurred as if it's a microfilm, I guess to emphasize the 'mystery' nature of the book, in line with Time Warner imprint it's published by. Of course, Parker novels aren't really mysteries, although they do often have mystery elements in them, or rather aspects of the plots that Parker himself is unaware of but that get revealed to us during the Stark Cutaways.

So, not quite sure if that is the effect the designers were going for, but I don't mind the end result. I think I will pick up the rest of the later Parkers in Robert Hale editions, though, particularly seeing as I already have Firebreak in that edition.

Oh, and this copy of Backflash is ex-library (in excellent nick, mind), this time from the East Grand Rapids branch of Kent District Library, wherever the hell that is. I actually grew up in Kent. But not that Kent. Certainly don't remember there being any grand rapids in the part of Kent – Beckenham – I'm from. Although there's one bit of the river that runs through Kelsey Park, where I used to fish for sticklebacks as a kid, that can be a bit pacey when it's been raining...

1 comment:

  1. Grand Rapids is in Michigan.

    I've been trying to borrow copies of Plunder Squad and Butcher's Moon from the library in Washington but it seems as if no one can find the copies the computer says they are supposed to have. I hope the copies haven't been sold off to collectors... (though if you get them, at least I'll be able to read about them)

    Given the value and scarcity of some of the Parker books, I've been wondering if you are actually reading your newly acquired copies. Or do you have reading copies and collectible copies?