Archive for June, 2010


Alice in Wonderland Jigsaw Book

Alice in Wonderland Jigsaw Book: with seven 48-piece jigsaws- by Lewis Carroll.

With John Tenniel illustrations, coloured by Harry G. Theaker and Diz Wallis.

This edition published by Ted Smart, 2000, but first issued by Macmillan in 1999.

ISBN: 0333762916

From the publisher:

A gift book with some of the most famous illustrations in “Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland” and “Through the Looking-Glass” presented as seven 48-piece jigsaw puzzles. Each puzzle is accompanied by an extract abridged from Lewis Carroll’s books as well as some of his nonsense poems and songs.
All the jigsaws are complete: they haven’t even been removed from their pages. In fact the book looks ‘as new’ although I bought it in the British Heart Foundation shop. For ÂŁ2.50, as you can see in the scan 🙂

Engineer Through the Looking Glass

Engineer Through the Looking Glass by Eric Laithwaite.

Published by the British Broadcasting Corporation, 1980. Illustrated by Michael Brownlow, with photographs by Neville Miles. Hardback.

Engineering is fun, argues the author and to prove it he takes us on a journey of exploration as strange and as absorbing as Alice’s adventures in the Looking Glass World.

This book is based on Laithwaite’s 1974 Royal Institution Christmas Lectures, which I remember being completely amazed and fascinated by as a child: it’s these and the Carl Sagan ones that I remember- the others have faded from memory.

There are lots of Alice references: the chapters/ lectures include:

  • Looking Glass House- on symmetry
  • Tweedledum and Tweedledee- on ‘handedness’ and chirality
  • Jam Tomorrow and Jam Yesterday- on odds and evens
  • The Jabberwock- on gyroscopes, gyreing and gimbaling in the wabe.

From wiki:

In 1974, Laithwaite was invited by the Royal Institution to give a talk on a subject of his own choosing. He decided to lecture about gyroscopes, a subject in which he had only recently become interested. His interest had been aroused by an amateur inventor named Alex Jones, who contacted Laithwaite about a reactionless propulsion drive he (Jones) had invented. After seeing a demonstration of Jones’s small prototype (a small wagon with a swinging pendulum which advanced intermittently along a table top), Laithwaite became convinced that “he had seen something impossible”. In his lecture before the Royal Institution he claimed that gyroscopes weigh less when spinning, and to demonstrate this he showed that he could lift a spinning gyroscope mounted on the end of a rod easily with one hand, but could not do so when the gyroscope was not spinning. At this time, Laithwaite suggested that Newton’s laws of motion could not account for the behavior of gyroscopes, and that they could be used as a means of reactionless propulsion. The members of the Royal Institution rejected his ideas, and his lecture was not published. (This was the first and only time an invited lecture to the Royal Institution has not been published.)

Shame, really.

He was also an expert on moths, publishing The Dictionary of Butterflies and Moths in Colour along with Allan Watson.

Various books available on amazon: Eric Laithwaite books


Mr. Dodgson

Mr.Dodgson: Nine Lewis Carroll Studies, with a Companion-guide to the “Alice at Longleat” Exhibition. Edited by Denis Crutch.

Published by The Lewis Carroll Society (April 1973).


With 16 black and white illustrations (including Photographs & facsimiles) and a folding genealogical table.

Available on Amazon: Mr. Dodgson. Nine Lewis Carroll studies, with a Companion-guide to the Alice at Longleat Exhibition


Alice in Jungleland

Alice in Jungleland by Mary Hastings Bradley.

Illustrations by Alice Hastings Bradley.

Published by D. Appleton & Company, 1928. Hardback, no dustjacket.

Not strictly an Alice book: in the 1920s Mary, her husband Herbert and their daughter Alice traveled to the ‘Belgian Congo’ looking for specimens of the mountain gorilla for display in museums. These expeditions were described in three books, “On the Gorilla Trail”, “Alice in Jungleland” and “Alice in Elephantland”.

Lots of shooting things. Different world: these days it’s cameras, not guns.

Bought in Marchpane on Cecil Court.


1903 Alice film, restored by the BFI

Well, I don’t own this, but I couldn’t resist posting it- it’s wonderful.


In Pursuit of Lewis Carroll

In Pursuit of Lewis Carroll by Raphael Shaberman.

Published by Greenwich Exchange, 1994.

ISBN: 1871551137

From the cover:

Sherlock Holmes and the Author uncover new evidence in their investigations into the mysterious life and writings of Lewis Carroll.

Together, they examine previous works by Carroll that have been overlooked by previous commentators. A newly-discovered poem, almost certainly by Carroll, is published here. S.D. Collingwood’s comprehensive bibliography of Carroll’s work is republished, in full, for the first time in many years.

Each chapter deals with an aspect of Carroll’s highly complex personality. It will surprise readers to learn that Carroll was interested in the problems of the identity of ‘Jack the Ripper’. Carroll’s relationship with his mother and father, with numerous child friends, and with the formidable Mrs Liddell, mother of the immortal ‘Alice’ are re-examined with fascinating results.

This book is essential reading for Carrollians and indeed anyone curious about the genius known by his world-famous pseudonym of ‘Lewis Carroll’.

About the author:

Raphael Shaberman is a life-long student of Lewis Carroll. He is a former teacher of autistic children, and has published a book on the autistic child, as well as a highly-praised bibliography of George MacDonald, the Victorian fantasy writer and author of children’s books.

Available on Amazon: In Pursuit of Lewis Carroll

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