Monday, December 03, 2007

Reissues revisited

In making the usual rounds up in Champaign yesterday, I stopped at the Barnes & Noble (where I was approached by an author while browsing the aisles and persuaded to attend a book-signing, but that's another story). In the Literature & Fiction section, I spotted two newish reissues, one of which I bought; I didn't buy the other, but I was sorely tempted because of the cover...

I already own Rosalind Laker's The Golden Tulip in hardcover, but isn't the new artwork gorgeous? Out now, in trade pb, from Three Rivers Press.

Last December, a bunch of us were discussing classic historical novels that deserve republication. Patricia Clapp's Jane-Emily was one I mentioned as a favorite. I'd reread it last year via a beat-up interlibrary loan copy - which the U of I only let me keep for five days, grr - so was glad to finally see it reissued. It's been packaged together with another of Clapp's historical novels, Witches' Children, a novel of the Salem witch trials. I was pleasantly surprised to see that B&N had it shelved with the adult fiction (I didn't check if there were other copies in the kids' section). Of course I grabbed it. If you haven't read Jane-Emily before, you're in for a treat. Here's the Amazon link. And in the comment trail for my December post, you'll find a note from Patricia Clapp's granddaughter.

The November issue of Solander (not online, but I'll update the website tonight to show the new cover and ToC) has a piece by historical novelist Susanne Dunlap on the classic historical novels being reissued by Chicago Review Press. Anya Seton's My Theodosia and Pauline Gedge's The Eagle and the Raven are the latest 2007 releases, and Seton's The Hearth and Eagle will appear next April if Amazon is to be believed. Amazon is also showing a May release date for Rosemary Sutcliff's Sword at Sunset, which several people here said they wanted to see in a new edition.

Check out the links to see the attractive new covers for both. The Seton boasts another George Romney portrait of Emma Hamilton, but it's not the same one we've seen on other books.

Sourcebooks has also been reissuing some classics, most notably Georgette Heyer's An Infamous Army and other titles. Per Amazon, again, they'll be reissuing Margaret Campbell Barnes's Brief Gaudy Hour next March. (No cover image yet.) If you haven't yet gotten your Anne Boleyn fix, this classic novel is a good choice.

So, now that it's December again, what other classics do you want to see back in print? You never know, your wish may be granted eventually.


  1. I don't know the novels you quote, Sarah, but will look out for them. At one time I was a Georgette Heyer fan: I suspect they're still in print but I've just unearthed some Elizabeth Goudge historical hardbacks from my attic. Hers are probably out of print so I'll let you know if I'd want them in print again after I've re-read them!

  2. Come to think of it, Elizabeth Goudge's The Child from the Sea would be a great choice. I loved that book.

  3. Some Brenda Clarke/Honeyman novels, please! Even when I can find used versions of them, they're outrageously expensive.

  4. Anonymous6:23 PM

    Read others of Clapp's books when I took YA Lit--Tamarack Tree, Constance, and Witches' Children. Pretty good, I thought. Tamarack Tree gave a good picture of the siege at Vicksburg. Never ran across Jane-Emily, though.

  5. A reissue of Sword at Sunset? That's good news!

  6. I'd like to see Elizabeth Byrd's "Immortal Queen", about Mary, Queen of Scots. I have an original hardcover without its jacket that I came across at the local used bookstore. It's still my favorite Mary Stuart book, by far.

  7. Clapp's Constance was an enormous influence with me, and though it has been decades since I read Jane-Emily, I remember it with astonishing clarity.

    My choice for re-issue would be another Margaret Campbell Barnes, Within the Hollow Crown, about Richard II and his wives The edition I found listed on Amazon was 20 years old!

  8. That's great news about Sword at Sunset. I'm hunting this books for years without having got a hand on a decent copy.

    I'd like to see more Alfred Duggan and George Shipway. And a reprint of Kurtz Deryni books, though those aren't historical fiction but Fantasy set in an alternate Britain.

  9. Maybe Sourcebooks will reissue other Campbell Barnes novels, too. I hope so.

    This may be good news, Gabriele. The first few of the Deryni books were revised with new intros by Kurtz, and reprinted in hardcover starting in 2004. The third one (High Deryni) came out in hardcover yesterday. So, good timing :)

    George Shipway's Imperial Governor was reissued in April, but maybe you know about that. It took me forever to find a used copy of Warrior in Bronze though.

  10. The third is out already? Maybe I'll get those when I have some spare money. *grin* Do we ever?

    I found the old version in paperbacks a few weeks ago, as well as the second trilogy about King Kelson. And a friend found Harrowing of Gwynedd and King Javan's Year for me, so now I'm hunting for Bastard Prince (for a reasonable price).

    Duggan's A Conscience of a King is out in paperback as well. Looks like some publishers thing there'd be a new generation of readers for those books.

  11. I've read the first Deryni trilogy, and the one about St. Camber, but not the rest - I think what happened is that I went to grad school and got caught up in research and homework. I'm so behind in that series.

  12. I found out about the books when I read an interview with Katherine Kurtz on Pat's Fantasy Hotlist blog. I then read the Wikipedia article and decided the world she's invented would be right down my alley. I like alternate historical setting with magic. :)

  13. Heh, I read that site all the time, and saw the interview... nice to see her books getting attention after so long. I read the first trilogy when I was in middle school :)

  14. Anonymous1:59 PM

    I would KILL to see Mara Kay's MASHA and THE YOUNGEST LADY IN WAITING reprinted. I read them in middle school and loved them. You can buy copies online - starting at about $200. Well, perhaps not KILL, but they are very well-written and give a great sense of Russia right after the Napoleanic Wars.

  15. Wow, I've never heard of either book (not that that means anything; I'm not really up on older children's historical fiction) but you're right. There are multiple copies out there online, but the prices are amazingly high.

    In the latest Solander, one thing that an editor at Chicago Review Press said he looked for, in deciding whether to reprint an OOP title, was multiple 4-or 5-star reviews on Amazon. (They don't publish children's books to my knowledge, but it's a useful thing to look for/pay attention to.)