Archive for December, 2011

31
Dec
11

Illustrated by Moritz Kennel

Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland by Lewis Carroll.

Illustrated by Moritz Kennel.

ISBN: 0690009844

Published by Crowell, New York, 1971. First US edition, and first in English. Hardback with dustjacket.

Kennel uses vibrant colours and strong shapes in the illustrations, giving them a real 70s look. Love ‘em. Shame I seem to be unable to find out anything about him…

 

31
Dec
11

The Philosopher’s Alice

The Philosopher’s Alice: Lewis Carroll with notes and introduction by Peter Heath. Subtitled The Thinking Man’s Guide to a Misunderstood Nursery Classic.

Tenniel illustrations

Published by Academy Editions, London, 1974. Hardcover. First Edition.

Peter Heath was a former president of the Lewis Carroll Society of North America, and Professor Emeritus of Philosophy at the University of Virginia. The book is the original text (both books) with philosophical asides and comments: Heath himself says that the books show “surprising insights into abstract questions of philosophy”. Very interesting stuff: well worth a read.

On the “Raven/ Writing Desk’ riddle:

‘Shibles compares this to the unanswerable questions allegedly asked by Philosophers. But the real objection to it is that it has too many answers, namely all the innumerable negative properties that ravens share with writing desks (by which I suppose he means logical negatives like ‘neither of them have a chimney’). If these do not count then neither does the property of unanswerability which the Hatter’s riddle is supposed to share with the questions of Philosophers.’

On amazon: The Philosopher’s Alice: Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland and Through the Looking-Glass

31
Dec
11

Fox-Rank Publicity Pack

 

Fox-Rank Publicity Pack for Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland.

To accompany the 1972 film – inserts include Story synopsis, Press Story, Editorial blocks and merchandising and promotional supplements.

Bought on ebay.

31
Dec
11

Fantastic Alice

Fantastic Alice: New Stories from Wonderland edited and introduced by Margaret Weis, an American fantasy author and joint creator of the Dragonlance game world.

ISBN-10: 0441002536

Published by Ace Fantasy (Ace Books); first edition paperback (1995).

A collection of seventeen (rather uneven) short stories inspired by Alice: the titles are rather more interesting than the stories themselves, including:

Muchness (Jody Lyn Nye)

The Rabbit Within (Gary A. Braunbeck)

Who Killed Humpty Dumpty (Mickey Zucker Reichhert)

I’m not the only one who is unconvinced:

From Publishers Weekly:

The current spate of themed, written-to-order anthologies leaves us awash in mediocrity; Fantastic Alice, in which 17 authors rework material by Lewis Carroll, is only a partial exception. Only Bruce Holland Rogers in the touching “A Common Night”-the best story here, despite an unconvincing close-illuminates what he borrows. He makes intriguing connections between Carroll and Emily Dickinson, and his verse is impressively clever. Several stories bring Carrollian characters to the real world; the best is Peter Crowther’s eerie, disturbing “Conundrums to Guess,” in which the Red Queen shows up (with an ax), but it’s undeveloped and rushed. Lawrence Watt-Evans, Jane M. Lindskold and Esther M. Friesner bring to reality the Cheshire Cat, the Dormouse and the Duchess’s pig-baby, respectively, with some cleverness and imagination. Most of the stories that put characters into versions of Carroll’s worlds, though, fail to one degree or another. The late Roger Zelazny contributes turgid and violent mythopoeia, Janet Pack a whimsy-slaying and sloppy “It was all a dream-or was it?” cliche; Mickey Zucker Reichert’s and Connie Hirsch’s takeoffs are flat-footed and laborious. While the writing here is generally professional and there is some cleverness throughout, too often we feel we’re seeing an old-time star spliced into a low-budget remake.

Shame really- a bit of a wasted opportunity.

Bought on abebooks, but available on Amazon: Fantastic Alice

28
Dec
11

Through the Looking-glass and What Alice Found There: Illustrated by John Vernon Lord

Through the Looking-glass and What Alice Found There: Illustrated by John Vernon Lord. Textual corrections and a foreword by Selwyn Goodacre.

Published by Artists Choice Editions; first edition (25 Oct 2011).

Available in two editions: a standard limited edition, with a run of 320 copies numbered and signed by Lord, and priced £98. The special limited edition, a run of 98 copies, bound with a leather spine and presented in a slipcase with a set of prints signed by Lord, is priced £320. Mine is the ‘cheap’ version…

From a Guardian article in 2007:

At first sight, his black and white illustrations, particularly those for Edward Lear, Lewis Carroll and Aesop, appear to be traditional wood engravings, but in fact they are all pen and ink drawings, which is something of a paradox. Wood engraving was invented so that drawings could be reproduced, but Lord has reversed the process and, instead of cutting into a surface to release the light, he skilfully builds up the dark areas with pen and ink. In his characteristically idiosyncratic manner, he meticulously records the time each illustration takes: in Aesop’s Fables, for instance, “The Bat, the Bramble and the Cormorant” took 16 hours, 32 minutes, while “The Crow and the Sheep” took 11 hours, 11 minutes. The variety in the textures (he uses a mapping pen and a Rotring) is astonishing: fine crosshatching emphasises form and volume, rather as a sheer black stocking does on a shapely ankle. Sometimes, with a thicker line, the glistening striations resemble the grooves on an old 78 record. In contrast to the free-hand drawing, certain areas are painstakingly created with parallel lines done with a ruler that’s had its hard edges rubbed down, so as to soften the line, while here and there he waxes the paper to resist the ink, creating sudden explosions of light in his atmospheric landscapes. His pen strokes are often dizzying in their intensity and while there’s little movement in the drawings – even the mad prancing figures he draws for Lear’s Nonsense Rhymes seem frozen in mid-air – around them the lines resonate with one another like singing telegraph wires. The composition is always precise and the drawing is very controlled, though occasionally he lets rip with a squiggle or two, as in “The Crow and the Sheep”. Humour is ever-present, but it’s a dark humour that lurks in corners and behind doors.

Just as lovely as the Wonderland.

Available via Amazon: Through the Looking-glass and What Alice Found There: Illustrated by John Vernon Lord

28
Dec
11

Alice in Numberland

Alice in Numberland by Sara Mark and Neil Kagan (Editors).

Published by Time Life Education (May 1993).

ISBN: 0809499789

Hardback, no dustjacket.

A collection of original stories, poems, riddles, games, and hands-on activities reflecting Alice’s adventures in Numberland, where she finds mathematical challenges throughout the magical landscape. She visits Fraction Common, Castle Math-a-lot, Symbolville, Mirror Land, Shape City and Tens Place. Looks really fun!

Available on Amazon: Alice in Numberland (I Love Math/Fantasy Math)

28
Dec
11

Alice’s Adventures in Curriculum Land

Alice’s Adventures in Curriculum Land by Edward Wakeling

Published by Bedfordshire Education Service, 1990

The book is a collection of photocopy-able sheets for use in classrooms- word games, crossword puzzles, logic problems, poems, art and design- loads of topics all explained by or using concepts from the Alice books.

The introductory page quotes the Mock Turtle explaining his schooling to Alice:

‘When we were little,’ the Mock Turtle went on at last, more calmly, though still sobbing a little now and then, ‘we went to school in the sea. The master was an old Turtle — we used to call him Tortoise — ‘

‘Why did you call him Tortoise, if he wasn’t one?’ Alice asked.

‘We called him Tortoise because he taught us,’ said the Mock Turtle angrily: ‘really you are very dull!’

‘You ought to be ashamed of yourself for asking such a simple question,’ added the Gryphon; and then they both sat silent and looked at poor Alice, who felt ready to sink into the earth.

Written to support an exhibition of some sort- I don’t know where or exactly what of…

Wakeling is a prolific Carrollian and ex-chairman of the Lewis Carroll Society (1982-1985).

I can’t find another copy of this on-line, but you can get Wakeling’s other books on Amazon: Wakeling




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