Archive for April, 2011


Alice in Blunderland

Alice in Blunderland: How to Save Billions of Dollars Without Even Trying by Jack Anderson with John Kidner.

Illustrations by Tom Ramey.

Published by Acropolis Books Inc (April 1983). Hardback first edition with dustjacket. It’s an old library copy so has assorted stamps and stickers.

ISBN: 0874914485

From the dustjacket:

Join modern day Alice in her zany misadventures in Blunderland (aka Washington, D.C.) as she meets bizarre bureaucrats and discovers the true meaning of the acronyms that enshroud us all.

Jack Northman Anderson (1922 – 2005) was an American newspaper columnist, considered one of the fathers of modern investigative journalism. He won the Pulitzer Prize in 1972.

Here’s Alice meeting the Official Wordsmith:

Available on Amazon: Alice in Blunderland (paperback)


Classics Illustrated

Classics Illustrated: Alice in Wonderland by Lewis Carroll.

Art by Alex A. Blum. New cover art by Cristina Choma. Digital recolouring and text by Shane Kirshenblatt.

(Re-)Published in July 2010 by Classic Comic Store. All artwork re-coloured and the cover digitally enhanced.

ISBN: 9781906814489

The Classics Illustrated series of comics have a complicated history that spans both sides of the Atlantic. If you want details there’s both a Wiki page and a history on the CI webpage.

Alex Blum- actually Alexander Anthony Blum (1889–1969) was born in Hungary, and studied at the National Academy of Design in New York.

He illustrated twenty-five of the Classics Illustrated titles as well as ‘Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs’, the debut issue of Classics Illustrated Junior.

Available on Amazon: Alice in Wonderland (Classics Illustrated)



Butterscotia or A Cheap Trip to Fairyland by Sir Edward Abbott Parry.

Judge Parry’s sequel to Katawampus.

Illustrated by by Archie MacGregor.

Published: London: David Nutt, 1896.

1st Trade Edition, 8vo hardback covered in beige cloth with brown designs. No dust jacket.

There are seven full page black and white illustrations, and 27 smaller pictures set into the text. The large pictures are protected by tissue paper leaves.

There’s also a fold-out map on onion-skin paper (12 x 14 inches).

Edward Abbott Parry (1863-1943) was an English judge and writer. This book was written for Parry’s children, and is considered by some as an Alice parody, or at least it’s widely thought that it was influenced by the Alice books. The dragon is certainly very Jabberwock-y in the illustration:

There’s an article about Parry here.

Various editions are available on Amazon: Butterscotia


Alison’s Discretions in Nonprofitland

Alison’s Discretions in Nonprofitland by Anne E. Tarleton.

Published on demand by Dog Ear Publishing, 2010. Paperback.

ISBN: 9781608444892

From the back cover:

This book is full of satire and parody as the author cleverly mimics the characters in Lewis Carroll’s book, Alice in Wonderland. Alison and her dog Dinah move to a small town in the rural Colorado, where she becomes involved with a national nonprofit organization, and like Alice, Alison finds amusing and absurd characters in the nonprofit organization. Entertaining and enlightening, this book is a must read for anyone who has every been involved in a national nonprofit organization.
MS. TARLETON is degreed in microbiology and worked for ten years in private and public cancer research facilities, including Fred Hutchinson Cancer Center in Seattle and New Mexico Cancer Center in Albuquerque, New Mexico where she coauthored papers published in the journal, Cancer. The next ten years she spent within the pharmaceutical and biologics industries as a product manager, and later as an outside sales representative.
After retirement, she worked with a number of national nonprofit organizations where she gathered information on nonprofit organizations, which became the inspiration for this fictional novel. She currently volunteers her time at two locally based community nonprofit organization in her hometown.

I haven’t read the book, and can’t say that the use of the same phrase (‘nonprofit organization’) three times in two sentences, or of the term ‘degreed in microbiology’ helps to tempt me to do so. Even as someone ‘degreed’ in the same subject. Maybe I’m being unfair, and that’s a recognised Americanism, but I hope it’s not one that makes it over here.

Available on Amazon: Alison’s Discretions in NonprofitLand


The All-New Batman: The Brave And The Bold #3- Through the Looking Glass

The All-New Batman: The Brave And The Bold #3– Through the Looking Glass: Chynna Clugston: editor, Dan Davis: inker, Heroic Age: colourer, Rick Burchett: cover, Scott Peterson: editor, Sholly Fisch: writer, Travis Lanham: letterer.

Comic book published by DC Comics: released in March 2011.

In which Batman and the Flash jump through the Mirror Master’s mirror and wind up Through the Looking Glass, where ‘The Mad Hatter’ takes control of the Flash because “he’s one of the few heroes with the good taste to wear a hat.” The heroes meet characters from Alice including Humpty Dumpty, the White Rabbit and Cheshire Cat, and eventually defeat the villains- and a Jabberwock to boot.


Buddy Tucker Meets Alice in Wonderland

Buddy Tucker Meets Alice in Wonderland: written and illustrated by R.F. Outcault.

Published by Cupples & Leon, 1905.

First edition paperback pamphlet/comic with the colour cover missing. Part of the Buster Brown series. 16 pages. Colour plates by Richard Felton Outcault.

Reprinted from the 1905 New York Herald Sunday Supplement.

Richard Felton Outcault (1863 – 1928) was an American comic strip writer and artist. After studying art in Cincinnati and Paris, he was employed by Joseph Pulitzer at the New York World. He was later headhunted by William Randolph Hearst, owner of the New York Journal, who apparently offered him a considerable amount of money to join the newspaper.

He created the Buster Brown series, and is considered the inventor of the modern comic strip.

In the comic, Alice takes Buddy and Botts the Bear to “The House That Jack Built” meeting Jack and the other characters in the story: The Rat That Ate the Malt, which bites Botts on the nose; The Dog That Worried the Cat; The Cow That Tossed the Dog, who tosses the dog onto Botts’ head and The Maiden All Forlorn, whereupon Botts tries to frighten the forlorn out of her.

Bought from Marchpane Books.


alice in candyland

Alice in Candyland, with apologies to Lewis Carroll.

No credit for author or illustrations.


Advertising pastiche for Lowney’s candies. Red and black illustrations. Stapled pamphlet.

Lowney’s began in the US in the late 1800s, moved to Canada in the 1960s, and was later bought out by Hershey’s Chocolates. This is a Canadian advertising pamphlet for the brand and mentions products such as Cherry Blossom, Cracker Jack, and Oh Henry! (Really Big). Blimey. Alice visits the factory in Sherbrooke, Quebec and learns how choclolate is made.

Alice took a step forward and gasped. The floor was soft, white and springy.

“Made from Angelus TenderWhip Marshmallows”, said the rabbit, as if it was the most natural thing in the world.

Bought from Canada from the really friendly and charming Stephen Temple Books.


Mr. Tompkins in Wonderland

Mr. Tompkins in Wonderland by George Gamov.

Published by Cambridge University Press.

This copy 1950: but first published 1940.

8vo hardback with dustjacket.

Illustrations by John Hookham.

The physicist George Gamow uses the adventures of Mr. Tompkins to explain modern scientific theories to a popular audience.

The book is structured as a series of dreams in which Mr Tompkins enters alternate worlds where the physical constants have radically different values from those they have in the real world. This results in the counterintuitive results of the theory of relativity and quantum mechanics becoming obvious in everyday life.

Mr Tompkins’ adventures begin when he chooses to spend the afternoon of a day’s holiday attending a lecture on the theory of relativity. The lecture proves less comprehensible than he had hoped and he drifts off to sleep and enters a dream world in which the speed of light is a mere 30 miles an hour. This becomes apparent to him through the fact that passing cyclists are subject to a noticeable Lorentz-Fitzgerald contraction:

The hands of the big clock on the tower down the street were pointing almost to noon and the streets were nearly empty.

A single cyclist was coming slowly down the street and, as he approached, Mr Tompkins’ eyes opened wide with astonishment. For the bicycle and the young man on it were unbelievable flattened in the direction of the motion…

The clock on the tower struck twelve, and the cyclist, evidently in a hurry, stepped harder on the pedals.

Mr Tompkins did not notice that he gained much in speed, but, as the result of his effort, he flattened still more and went down the street looking exactly like a picture cut out of cardboard.

Then, Mr Tompkins felt very proud because he could understand what was happening to the cyclist– it was simply the contraction of moving bodies about which he had just learned.

“Evidently nature’s speed limit is lower here,” he concluded, “that is why the bobby on the corner looks so lazy, he need not watch for speeders.”

G. Gamow says:

In the winter of 1938 I wrote a short, scientifically fantastic story (not a science fiction story) in which I tried to explain to the layman the basic ideas of the theory of curvature of space and the expanding universe. I decided to do this by exaggerating the actually existing relativistic phenomena to such an extent that they could easily be observed by the hero of the story, C. G. H. Tompkins, a bank clerk interested in modern science.

I sent the manuscript to Harpers Magazine and, like all beginning authors, got it back with a rejection slip. The other half-a-dozen magazines which I tried followed suit. So I put the manuscript in a drawer of my desk and forgot about it.

During the summer of the same year, I attended the International Conference of Theoretical Physics, organized by the League of Nations in Warsaw. 1 was chatting over a glass of excellent Polish mind with my old friend Sir Charles Darwin, the grandson of Charles (The Origin of Species) Darwin, and the conversation turned to the popularization of science. I told Darwin about the bad luck I had had along this line, and he said: ‘Look, Gamow, when you get back to the United States dig up your manuscript and send it to Dr C. P. Snow, who is the editor of a popular scientific magazine Discovery published by the Cambridge University Press.’

So I did just this, and a week later came a telegram from Snow saying: ‘Your article will be published in the next issue. Please send more.’ Thus a number of stories on Mr Tompkins, which popularized the theory of relativity and the quantum theory, appeared in subsequent issues of Discovery. Soon thereafter I received a letter from the Cambridge University Press, suggesting that these articles, with a few additional stories to increase the number of pages, should be published in book form. The book, called Mr Tompkins in Wonderland, was published by Cambridge University Press in 1940 and since that time has been reprinted sixteen times. This book was followed by the sequel, Mr Tompkins Explores the Atom, published in 1944 and by now reprinted nine times. In addition, both books have been translated into practically all European languages and also into Chinese and Hindi.

Chapter headings:

1. City Speed Limit
2. The Professor’s Lecture on Relativity which caused Mr Tompkins’s dream
3. Mr Tompkins takes a holiday
4. The Professor’s Lecture on Curved Space Gravity and the Universe
5. The Pulsating Universe
6. Cosmic Opera
7. Quantum Billiards
8. Quantum Jungles
9. Maxwell’s Demon
10. The Gay Tribe of Electrons
10.5. A Part of the Previous Lecture which Mr Tompkins slept through
12. Inside the Nucleus
13. The Woodcarver
14. Holes in Nothing
15. Mr Tompkins Tastes a Japanese Meal

Bought in Marchpane for £30, available as a modern reprint on amazon: Mr. Tompkins


Alice Aforethought: Guinness Carrolls for 1938

Alice Aforethought: Guinness Carrolls for 1938

Pamphlet of 24 stapled pages.

Illustrated by Antony Groves-Raines.

Printed in Great Britain by John Waddington Limited, London

This series of pamphlets are called “Doctor’s Books” as they were sent to GPs’ surgeries to get them to encourage the drinking of Guinness for medical purposes: apparently very good for nursing mothers for example… how times change.

Guinness began printing these in 1933, carried on until World War 2 halted the practice, and started again in 1950. The booklets were then produced each year until 1966. They were produced by the advertising agency SH Benson, who made many of the iconic Guinness ads. There were 24 booklets produced, of which five were Alice spoofs. This is the third of those.

Parodies include Alice Through the Guinness Glass, The Three Little Sisters, Humpty Dumpty Re-Cited, Clubberwocky and The French have a Word For It :

“What’s the French for Guinness?”

“I’m afraid I don’t know that” said Alice.

“Why, ‘Guinness’ of course!” said the Queen.

“But that’s the same word,” objected Alice.

“Why shouldn’t it be” said the Queen. “Even if you must talk French, there’s nothing like a Guinness, except another Guinness.”

I bought my copy cheaply on ebay- you might be lucky, or there’s usually a copy on either abebooks or on amazon: Alice Aforethought : Guinness Carrolls for 1938


Alice Where Art Thou? More Guinness Carrolling

Alice, Where Art Thou? (More Guinness Carrolling).

Pamphlet with 16 stapled pages.

1952: Printed by John Waddington Ltd., Leeds, England, on John Dickinson & Co. Ltd. Evensyde Paper

Illustrations by Antony Groves-Raines, who was also involved in designing posters for the Underground.

Guinness began sending promotional booklets to doctors in 1933, breaking off during World War 2, and restarting again in 1950.
In all, 24 were made, of which five are based on the Alice books: this is the fourth of the five. All of the booklets were produced by the advertising agency SH Benson, who were also responsible for many of the iconic Guinness ads of the period.

There are parodies of episodes from both Alice books, and from The Hunting of the Snark, along with Alice finding herself in new situations such as Alice in Snowmansland and Alice in Posterland.

My copy was bought fairly cheaply on ebay: you might be lucky and do the same, or you can usually find it for around the 80 quid mark on abebooks or amazon: Alice, where art thou?











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April 2011
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