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  • The Little Green Road to Fairyland – By Annie R Rentoul and Ida Rentoul Outhwaite – First Australian edition 1948

    The Little Green Road to Fairyland – By Annie R Rentoul and Ida Rentoul Outhwaite – First Australian edition 1948

    This is the first Australian printing of this beautifully illustrated, and written, children’s book by Australian Rentoul sisters Annie and Ida (Outhwaite by marriage).

    First published in London in 1922 in a deluxe limited issue. This first Australian edition was issued in 1948 still under the original publishers name, Adam and Charles Black, Soho Square, London and printed by Speciality Press, Collins Street, Melbourne.

    Quarto, 94 pages with sixteen plates, half in colour by Ida. Still has the hard to come by dust jacket albeit signs of tape repair (tape now removed) an a little pink crayon near the edge. Gift inscription inside otherwise internally very clean, with all the plates … sometimes pilfered.
    Reference Muir 739.

    Collectable first Australian printing – beautiful Ida Outhwaite plates delightful Annie Rentoul narrative.


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  • Wings of Gold – How the Aeroplane Developed New Guinea – James Sinclair

    Wings of Gold – How the Aeroplane Developed New Guinea – James Sinclair

    No greater expert in his subject, James Sinclair’s formidable book about the exploration driven development of aviation in New Guinea. Covering the period from 1922 to 1942 during which New Guinea was the busiest place for aircraft movements anywhere in the world.

    Published by Robert Brown in 1983 in fine condition. Quarto, 326 pages a substantial book. Images to end papers and illustrated throughout with numerous period photographs, maps, facsimile documents etc. The aviation images are to die for.

    Expatriates will know the Leahy family and Jack Hides and pleased to see Frank Hurley standing on the Curtiss Seagull flying boat and a special image of Amelia Earhart and her navigator Fred Noonan just before they left Lae on their fateful attempt to cross the Pacific.

    Wings of Gold – Best book on the period vies with Sinclair’s Three Volume “Balus” as the best aviation book ever.


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  • Brighton Rock – Graham Greene – First Australian edition 1944

    Brighton Rock – Graham Greene – First Australian edition 1944

    First Australian edition published by Invincible Press printed by “Truth”. Published in 1944. Softcover, octavo, stapled 175 pages showing some usual even toning of war paper – still a pretty good copy. Cover design identical to the UK first.

    The Publisher summary on the front cover is taken from the Heinemann first UK edition of 1938 … “A story of murder and love, of guilt and faith, of the perpetual conflict between evil and good, Brighton Rock is one of the most powerful and exciting novels the publishers have handled” … and it certainly is …

    Many regard this as Greene’s greatest work. Being short in form he still regarded it as an “Entertainment” rather than a fully formed and sized novel.

    Dickie Attenborough starred in the first film adaptation … now recognised as a classic … Dickie was brilliant in the role of the central character

    Graham Greene Collectable


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  • Jean-Baptiste Charcot – Polar Explorer – Commemorative Bronze Medal – 1936

    Jean-Baptiste Charcot – Polar Explorer – Commemorative Bronze Medal – 1936

    Large commemorative medal to celebrate the life of Jean-Baptiste Auguste Etienne Charcot (1867-1936) struck by the French Mint, in 1936, under the auspices of Expeditions Polaires Francaises. Charcot Frances greatest polar explorer led two successful expeditions to the Antarctic during the Heroic era. He was a doctor and son of neurologist Jean-Martin Charcot.

    His first expedition from 1904-1907 in the Francais explored the west coast of Graham Land. This was followed by the 1908-1910 explorations in the Pourquoi-Pas? The subject of the edition offered here. Later he turned his attention to the North and made scientific explorations off Greenland and Svalbard again in the Porquois-Pas? He died when the ship was wrecked in a severe storm off the coast of Iceland in 1936.

    This substantial bronze medal, 67mm in diameter and weighing 150 gm celebrates his life. It was designed by E.M. Lindauer, with a bust after Paul Richer. Richer, an anatomical artist, was a colleague of Charcot’s father and worked with him in illustrating certain medical texts. Richer’s sculptures are found in museums around the world including the Musee d’Orsay.

    The medal carries a bust of J.B. Charcot on the front acknowledging Paul Richer and on reverse and image of the Pourquoi-Pas? Among icebergs with Expeditions Polaires Francaises above and the ships name below. Very good condition, if not fine condition, with very strong relief.

    An example of this medal sold as lot 79 in the Scott Amundsen Centenary Sale at Bonhams, London in 2012 for just short of A$2,500

    Special Antarctic Collectable Celebrates the life of J.B. Charcot


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  • The Antarctic Pilot – Comprising the Coasts of Antarctica and all Islands Southward of the Usual Route of Vessels – Collectable 1974 Fourth Edition – Keith Shackleton’s Copy

    The Antarctic Pilot – Comprising the Coasts of Antarctica and all Islands Southward of the Usual Route of Vessels – Collectable 1974 Fourth Edition – Keith Shackleton’s Copy

    Original work hardbound in blue cloth covered boards with gilt title. Highly technical works published by the Hydrographer to the UK Navy. Foolscap format, 336 pages after preliminaries.

    Keith Shackleton (1923-2015) a relative of Sir Ernest Shackleton and inspired by him. A wildlife painter with a specialty for colder climates and the Antarctic. Close friend and collaborator with Conservationist and fellow painter Peter Scott, son of Robert Falcon Scott. Keith was co-presenter on one of the first televised wildlife programs the BBC’s ‘Animal Magic’. He was a skilled yachtsman and represented Britain on several occasions. He was President of the Society of Wildlife Artists and the Royal Society of Marine Artists, and a Trustee of the UK Antarctic Heritage Trust. In his later years he spent much time in the Antarctic on board the MV Lindblad Explorer … where this Pilot was put to good use (see below). A retrospective exhibition of his “Polar Art”’ was held at the Scott Polar Research Institute in 2007.

    The “Pilot” contains many highly instructive charts and shoreline photographic images as would be expected. Also serious chapters with good illustrations on fauna, birds, albatrosses and petrels, penguins etc and tables of breeding distribution. Fish similarly covered and the various members of the seal family and whales and dolphins that inhabit the southern waters. The islands covered include Bouvetoya, Prince Edward Islands, Crozet, Kerguelan, Heard, McDonald and Macquarie and the South Georgia, South Sandwich and South Orkney and Shetland Groups

    The front end papers, title and facing page are covered in stamps and stickers from Shackleton’s Antarctic voyages on the Lindblad Explorer – 57 in total with three signatures from Base Commanders … including that of Grytviken, South Georgia dated 1981 … which was invaded the following year as part of the Falklands War. An interesting manuscript addition at the top of the front free endpaper “Though it may be left in the bridge …. This is Keith Shackleton’s Antarctic Pilot”. The Lindblad Explorer sank near the South Shetlands in 2007. Presumably, Keith Shackleton took his Pilot with him … he was not on that voyage!

    Another interesting note in Shackleton’s hand appears on page vi quoting American writer and naturalist Charles William Beebe [from "the Bird" - 1906] … “The beauty and genius of a work of art may be reconceived, though the first material expression is destroyed; a vanished harmony may yet again inspire the composer; but when the last individual of a race of living things [beings] breathes no more, another heaven and another earth must pass before such a one can be again”

    In addition there is also Supplement of 1977 which includes a sheet of stamps associated with a voyage in the Frontier Spirit … we understand that Shackleton worked as naturalist on both the Lindblad and Frontier Spirit.

    Lastly, a large original photograph 25cm by 18cm of bergs and snow capped mountainous island … could be Deception Island.

    A wealth of Antarctic knowledge beyond the navigation – special provenance with additional elements


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  • Steve Young or the Voyage of the “Hvalross” to the Icy Sea – Fenn – circa 1915

    Steve Young or the Voyage of the “Hvalross” to the Icy Sea – Fenn – circa 1915

    The author George Manville Fenn was a prolific writer of adventure stories for the young in the Victorian era.

    Published by Partridge and Co, London. Octavo, 416 nicely illustrated. Evenly browned internally otherwise a very good copy. Embossed illustrated boards and spine in near fine condition. Looks a beauty.

    A rare book and we cannot find the title on his “official’ list of publications This edition circa WWI era .. we cannot find any other contemporary copies available.

    Hvalross is Norwegian for Walrus. Steve Young is an orphan whose uncle, Captain Young has disappeared on a voyage in and around Spitzbergen in the Arctic Ocean. The Captain’s friends charter a boat the Norwegian “Hvalross” to search for him. Sixteen year old Steve goes along much to the disgust of the ships Doctor who thinks young fellows are just a nuisance. Gales, storms, intense cold and Polar Bears … strong currents complete darkness all add to the adventure.

    Scarce adventure on the “Walrus” up around Spitzbergen …


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