Book Covers

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  • caractacus pottscaractacus potts Orbital communicator, level 10Posts: 3,884MI6 Agent
    edited May 2023

    Monty Python made a few Biggles references, so its good to learn what thats referring to. one of the spanish inquisitors was named Cardinal Biggles, and I'm sure there was at least one other reference.

  • BarbelBarbel ScotlandPosts: 35,974Chief of Staff

    I didn't expect the Spanish Inquisition.

  • CoolHandBondCoolHandBond Mactan IslandPosts: 5,983MI6 Agent
    edited May 2023

    This book supposedly about the man who Ian Fleming based James Bond on used to sell quickly whenever it came into stock. I probably flicked through a copy at one stage but didn’t ever read it in full.

    Yeah, well, sometimes nothin' can be a real cool hand.
  • CoolHandBondCoolHandBond Mactan IslandPosts: 5,983MI6 Agent

    The Lost World is a fine novel by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle and has had many film and television adaptions over the years. The book has also had many good covers.


    Yeah, well, sometimes nothin' can be a real cool hand.
  • Silhouette ManSilhouette Man The last refuge of a scoundrelPosts: 8,574MI6 Agent

    That Pan Books cover is gorgeous. That's a really old one too. I love a vintage Pan.

    "The tough man of the world. The Secret Agent. The man who was only a silhouette." - Ian Fleming, Moonraker (1955).
  • CoolHandBondCoolHandBond Mactan IslandPosts: 5,983MI6 Agent

    Some spy themed covers…


    Yeah, well, sometimes nothin' can be a real cool hand.
  • BarbelBarbel ScotlandPosts: 35,974Chief of Staff

    "The big spy boom was on. You remember that? The time when every second publication was a spy book, and if they'd laid all the spies end to end nobody would have been surprised." John Gardner

  • chrisno1chrisno1 LondonPosts: 3,123MI6 Agent

    That last one is The Man From War series of the late sixties. On and off I've been searching for these, but they are quite hard to come by, especially in the format you've posted. I love these Bond rip off titles from the sixties and seventies. The covers drew you in and - even when the stories were so-so - I always have a sense of well-being afterwards, as if my money has been well spent.

  • Silhouette ManSilhouette Man The last refuge of a scoundrelPosts: 8,574MI6 Agent
    "The tough man of the world. The Secret Agent. The man who was only a silhouette." - Ian Fleming, Moonraker (1955).
  • BarbelBarbel ScotlandPosts: 35,974Chief of Staff

    That's from "Traitor's Exit", @Silhouette Man, perhaps my favourite Gardner and highly recommended to those of us who enjoy 60s spy fiction.

    (Not to be confused with "Traitor's Gate" a Dennis Wheatley book about Gregory Sallust.)

  • Silhouette ManSilhouette Man The last refuge of a scoundrelPosts: 8,574MI6 Agent

    Ah, Boysie Oakes! Sadly I've not read that one yet but I have copies of all of John Gardner's books (naturally!) including a few signed and proof copies. I must get around to that one. That passage sounds like a nice little meta touch and spot on about the 1960s heydey of spy fiction.

    "The tough man of the world. The Secret Agent. The man who was only a silhouette." - Ian Fleming, Moonraker (1955).
  • BarbelBarbel ScotlandPosts: 35,974Chief of Staff

    Oh, that book is crammed full of meta touches! I bet Gardner had a ball writing it, and really you should read it asap.

  • Silhouette ManSilhouette Man The last refuge of a scoundrelPosts: 8,574MI6 Agent

    Yes, I've had it on my shelves for ages. I really must read it. I hadn't realised it was written in the first person from a spy author's perspective and with Boysie Oakes as a secondary character. That's an interesting change in approach. Gardner always liked to experiment a bit with his series characters and he did the same in his later Bond novels too.

    "The tough man of the world. The Secret Agent. The man who was only a silhouette." - Ian Fleming, Moonraker (1955).
  • CoolHandBondCoolHandBond Mactan IslandPosts: 5,983MI6 Agent

    These sort of covers sold so quickly they hardly touched the shelves…



    Yeah, well, sometimes nothin' can be a real cool hand.
  • CoolHandBondCoolHandBond Mactan IslandPosts: 5,983MI6 Agent
    edited May 2023

    I reviewed the movie Grizzly a week or so ago and said that I had sold some copies of the MTI ( movie tie-in) paperback so here it is, along with a few more examples…

    This was filmed as Three Days Of The Condor…maybe the budget wouldn’t stretch to six days…


    Yeah, well, sometimes nothin' can be a real cool hand.
  • caractacus pottscaractacus potts Orbital communicator, level 10Posts: 3,884MI6 Agent

    CoolHand said:

    This was filmed as Three Days Of The Condor…maybe the budget wouldn’t stretch to six days…

    _____________________________________________________________

    I have this exact edition, probably found in one of those neighbourhood little library boxes

    the movie's vastly better than the book

  • CoolHandBondCoolHandBond Mactan IslandPosts: 5,983MI6 Agent

    I haven’t read the book and I think I only ever had one copy of that version but several of this one…



    Yeah, well, sometimes nothin' can be a real cool hand.
  • CoolHandBondCoolHandBond Mactan IslandPosts: 5,983MI6 Agent

    Some more movie tie-ins…NOTLD very popular because of the photo inserts…MF great cover…CJATCOG psychedelic covers were popular for a time…TUW excellent little seen film and a decent adaption…TGVOS fantasy covers always popular…TSWLM interesting that Warner Books dropped the James Bond And from the title which the UK edition had…



    Yeah, well, sometimes nothin' can be a real cool hand.
  • BarbelBarbel ScotlandPosts: 35,974Chief of Staff

    I used to love such books and had a lot of them. Of the above, though, I only had one (make a wild stab in the dark as to which) and still have it

  • chrisno1chrisno1 LondonPosts: 3,123MI6 Agent

    TSWLM is the American edition, right? So I ask, was the UK Jonathon Cape hardback edition the same cover as the UK paperback?

  • CoolHandBondCoolHandBond Mactan IslandPosts: 5,983MI6 Agent
    edited June 2023

    @Barbel I’m going to for Sinbad

    @chrisno1 Yes, the American publisher Warner Books, of which all the above covers are from. No, it’s this cover…and expect to pay 1000 GBP for a nice first edition hardback at todays valuations. It was 3.50 GBP cover price, originally.


    Yeah, well, sometimes nothin' can be a real cool hand.
  • chrisno1chrisno1 LondonPosts: 3,123MI6 Agent

    Wow, that's pricey. I assume it was a limited run. What a great cover. I have never seen this before. [Why ? I ask myself] Thanks for that info. I thought it would have been the same as the soft cover as the publication dates are the same. Good to know.

    As you are the resident expert, was there a hard cover of Janes Bond and Moonraker ?

  • BarbelBarbel ScotlandPosts: 35,974Chief of Staff

    I think that owing to time differences, CHB is probably asleep at the moment so I hope he doesn't mind me posting the answer to @chrisno1's question -


  • BarbelBarbel ScotlandPosts: 35,974Chief of Staff

    (and no, I don't have a copy, much as I'd like to)

  • chrisno1chrisno1 LondonPosts: 3,123MI6 Agent
    edited June 2023

    How come I've never seen these two fantastic cover designs. I am bereft 😟😟

  • BarbelBarbel ScotlandPosts: 35,974Chief of Staff

    I don't know what age you are, chris, but I'm willing to bet you're younger than CHB and I! Age may not guarantee efficiency, but it has its advantages.

  • Silhouette ManSilhouette Man The last refuge of a scoundrelPosts: 8,574MI6 Agent
    edited June 2023

    I read recently that both of these Christopher Wood film novelisation covers were painted by the British artist Bill Botten (b. 1935) who later went on to paint the covers for John Gardner's For Special Services and Icebreaker in the Richard Chopping style. I hadn't realised they were all done by the one man. According to Wikipedia Botten did the JB, TSWLM cover in a Pre-Raphaelite style while the JB and MR cover was in a different style again using an artist's gouache. Interesting stuff, though like @Barbel above, I sadly don't have either novelisation in first edition. Oh well. 🙂

    Link: Bill Botten - Wikipedia

    "The tough man of the world. The Secret Agent. The man who was only a silhouette." - Ian Fleming, Moonraker (1955).
  • chrisno1chrisno1 LondonPosts: 3,123MI6 Agent

    Great info here. My lack of knowledge is down to pure myopia. I don't take much interest in hardback books. It was space saving initially, now it is more to do with principle, until I earn a fortune enough not to care about book buying tendencies. I just bought OHisMSS, my first hard cover for years & years.

  • Sir MilesSir Miles The Wrong Side Of The WardrobePosts: 26,342Chief of Staff
  • chrisno1chrisno1 LondonPosts: 3,123MI6 Agent

    Well done, sir !

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