Thursday, August 02, 2012
The Castaways by Conor O'Brien
One of the things you simply can't beat a real bookshop for is the gentle and honourable fun of browsing: the possibility of coming across something you didn't even know you were looking for. Like this 1946 children's book from a bookshop in Alton today. I have never heard of the author, Conor O'Brien, the Dublin publisher is new to me as well, Browne and Nolan, the illustrator Brigid Ganly is also previously unknown to me and I have no idea who did this fantastic jacket signed only with initials, RBC(?). It's possible that the dustjacket is actually initialled RBG and I can find a few Internet references to an artist called Rose Brigid Ganly but they don't tie up very well as yet. The author, it seems, wrote a number of what seem to be boys' adventure yarns, particularly with maritime subject matter since, if the jacket blurb is to be believed, he was a round-the-world yachtsman himself, having taken the smallest ever boat round the Horn. I'm tempted to actually read this one!