Wednesday, July 18, 2007

The Old and the New




This is the proof copy of a new publication - not yet available - called The Colt and the Porcupine. Four Letters from John Holden to A. J. A. Symons. These four letters are the bulk of the information that Holden sent to Symons about Frederick Rolfe Baron Corvo when Symons was researching his book, The Quest for Corvo. There are extracts from the letters in The Quest, but as the editor of this volume points out, Symons felt little compunction about letting accurate transcription get in the way of a good story, hence, this is the first accurate appearance of these letters and their first appearance complete. When I read them for the first time I was bowled over by the impact of their directness and the way they paint such a vivid picture of what it was like to actually know Rolfe. They are far better at making one feel one knows Rolfe as a person than any of the three biographies, including The Quest.
I have designed this booklet to roughly the same format as A. J. A. Symons' Notes on Wilde, which I published a while ago. I do particularly like the way these booklets look. There is something about that gold line which makes one think of gilt ruling on half-leather books and yet I have used a fairly modern set of ornaments and the clean cream covers give a rather more modern appearance.
There is one more project in hand at the moment which has to do with Symons and I suspect that too will be put together in the same format.
Unusually, I shall also be creating a case-bound special state of this title using some of the store of marbled paper I recently accquired. There is not enough of most of the patterns I have for anything more than one-offs but there is just enough of one to cover the boards for twelve special copies of The Colt and the Porcupine.

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