Day 312 Halloween… and books

Happy Halloween!

The National Theatre’s Frankenstein (Cumberbatch as Creature) was fantastic! It’s an unusual version in that it’s from the point of the creature rather than the doctor- also there is very little set dressing and the acting must carry the story entirely. Which, btw, it totally does. Being a stage play, there are very few ‘special effects’ as we have come to know them but the way the lighting is used is something marvellous. If you get a chance and you haven’t seen it- do. I wish National Theatre would put it out on DVD so people who can’t see it in the threatre could see it as well. (And I could watch it over and over…)

Most of the week, I’ve been book geeking. I started to read my copy of ‘Huckleberry Finn’ to discover that the Easton Press version has been edited (!!!!) and at least in one place a word changed that changes the entire meaning of the sentence. Plus the introduction is huge- 30 pages or so- and the illustrations are poor. So, ok, I need to replace that copy with either one illustrated by Norman Rockwell (to match my ‘Tom Sawyer’) or by Worth Brehm- unabridged and unedited. If I have to bind it myself, so be it.

Just as an aside- who has the arrogance to think they can improve on a master writer like Mark Twain? Some people have no sense.

In looking for a decent copy of Huck Finn, I lucked into a copy of ‘Siddhartha’ from Easton that was quite reasonably priced… and a limited edition of ‘The Silver Chalice’ for $5. It looks like the signed edition that was limited to 750 copies although it didn’t say so and I’ll have to get it to find out. I still want an Easton press copy… and I want the one illustrated by Paul Laune. I’m hoping either the limited or the Easton Press edition has the Laune illustrations and I can get by with two copies.

I’ve also found an Easton press edition (with original illustrations so that’s alright) of the complete Uncle Remus. I don’t know what happened to my copy but it seems to have gone and wants replacing. I’d also like to get a copy of the antique edition of ‘Songs and Sayings’ for the cover illustration- B’rer Rabbit smoking a pipe which is charming.

And I’ve found a pair of Tom Brown books that are not leather… but are so nice I want them anyway. ‘School Days’ had gilded imaged of cricket bats and ‘Oxford’ has a graduation cap and oars and a boat. So very appropriate!

I’m going to end up with a small collection of books that are not leather bound- even if I have a leather copy- simply because the book is fantastic as it stands. I have finally managed to talk myself out of the notion that I should only have one copy of any book. My reasoning was that I can only read one copy (at a time) and it’s foolish to duplicate when there are so very many books I want but I’m running up against my own indecision about which copy I would prefer. Then it occurred to me that I can have both of them if I want- why not?

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