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  • The Passenger Pigeon – by Joseph Quinn.

    The Passenger Pigeon – by Joseph Quinn.

    No date comb bound copied item published circa 1990, see below. This was its original form – self published by the author.

    Subtitled “A Boys Story” but not a story for Boys, in fact a compilation of the writings of the author, many of them, published in Bird World … and all about the demise of the Passenger Pigeon.

    We learn that the last pigeon a female was given the name of Martha, after George Washington’s wife … the second last Passenger Pigeon, her brother, named George … naturally. We like this unusual work not just for its obvious rarity but the love of the writer for his subject. The Boys story is a reference to him finding his childhood scribbles about the subject matter.

    96 pages in all, some images from the magazine that have not copied too well. Cream card covers.

    A total of 20 separate articles, all of some length, published variously between 1982 and 1987.

    Inserted on posh faux vellum paper is a poem written by the author in honour of the sadly retired bird; rather well penned and definitely moving.

    Joseph Quinn – his life’s work on the Passenger Pigeon all in one place.


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  • The Fountain Overflows – Rebecca West – 1957

    The Fountain Overflows – Rebecca West – 1957

    An early edition of this important work by Rebecca West published by MacMillan, London and nominated a “Book society choice” – a March 1957 edition after the January 1957 First.

    Octavo, 392 pages, very good condition, a trifle marked on the page edges.

    Rebecca West the nom de plume of Dame Cicily Isabel Fairfield was named by the Times as the best female writer of the 20thC.

    She maybe is even more famous for her lengthy romance with HG Wells despite his 27 years on her of his already marriage. They had a child, Anthony west, who also became a writer. He wrote a fictionalised biography of HG Wells that did not show Rebecca (or Cicily) in a good light … they never spoke again; and it was worse than that.

    The Fountain Overflows can be understood from the Blake quote on the title page … “The cistern contains: the fountain overflows”. Essentially and autobiographically inspired novel concerning the Aubrey family in the first decade of the 20th Century.

    Later Rebecca west would write two further extensions … one published posthumously. She lived then in a large apartment overlooking Hyde Park. Unfortunately, next to the Iranian Embassy and had to be evacuated when it was under siege … if you remember all that. I her final years she was friends with Frankie Hawerd so must have had some fun.

    Rebecca West an extraordinary life and this novel encapsulates some of it.


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  • The Third Eye – the Autobiography of a Tibetan Lama – Lobsang Rampa.

    The Third Eye – the Autobiography of a Tibetan Lama – Lobsang Rampa.

    First published in 1956, this copy from the next year, by Secker & Warburg, London.

    Octavo, 256 pages, some illustrations including “Symbolism of Tibetan Chortens”. Nice dust jacket art with a photograph of the author on the rear.

    At the age of seven Rampa was decreed by two famous Tibetan astrologers to be specially gifted. He left his family for the Lamasery of Chakpuri on the outskirts of Lhasa. He became an adviser to the Dalai Lama because of his exceptional powers. The “Third Eye” is a reference to a procedure that heightens one’s abilities in clairvoyance. In the volcanic caves under the Potala he submitted to the mystical experience … the “living death”. And there is more … one for the believers.

    The autobiography of a special gifted Lama.


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  • A Night to Remember [the Sinking of the Titanic] – Walter Lord – First UK edition 1956

    A Night to Remember [the Sinking of the Titanic] – Walter Lord – First UK edition 1956

    First UK edition of this classic Titanic book published by Longmans, Green etc London in 1956. Still regarded as the best account of the Titanic disaster and the basis of the Classic Movie of 1958 starring Kenneth Moore.

    Octavo, 187pages, numerous illustrations from period photographs and end paper diagrams of the fated ship. Jacket art by Ley Kenyon.

    The author was in the American Intelligence Service during WWII, was an obsessive collector of uniform buttons from the American Civil War and spent twenty years researching for this book … not all the time of course.

    A really special book that Voyager has read through twice without a pause. The photographic images are super …menus First and second Class; Lord Astor looking, well, aristocratic; the Gymnasium; the Café Parisien … the lifeboat that the Countess of Rothes was later to “man” the tiller.

    Titanic Gold – UK First Edition 1956


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  • The Martian – George du Maurier – First edition 1898.

    The Martian – George du Maurier – First edition 1898.

    First edition published by Harper & Brothers in 1898.

    A substantial book, large squarish octavo, 471 pages, dark black end papers which show signs of paper label removal, so possibly ex library probably not public as no other library marks. Striking deep blue cloth covered boards with gilt titles, design, and faux signature to front, gilt title to spine, extraordinarily clean. Someone has assembled poetry to the early preliminaries, which we find quite charming.

    Considered the be quasi autobiographical with a strange surreal Martian twist. The life of Barty Josselin as told by a friend Robert Maurice from early days at the Institution Brossard in Paris. Josselin a good looker and thoroughly talented and extrovert. Later back in England Barty has a spell in the army.

    Later his eyesight starts to fail which makes him think of taking his own life. In a dream a spirit guardian in the form of Martia from Mars comes to him. From then Martia inspires him and provides advice which secures his career as an author. Martia has other influences and wishes him to marry Julia … and all gets a little complicated from there ..

    George du Maurier Channelling a Martian Spirit Guide


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  • Maria Island Convicts – Brian Rieusset – Signed by Author

    Maria Island Convicts – Brian Rieusset – Signed by Author

    First edition signed self published by the author, Hobart 2007.

    Large format, softcover, perfect bound, 63 pages, illustrated.

    A thoroughly researched and well-presented work on the convict of Maris Island, Tasmania 1825-1832.

    The Register of Convicts which contains information on the 1 female and 346 male convicts is held at the Oxfordshire County Records Office in England. Not sure why it stays there of why the solitary female had to endure this rather peculiar imbalance.

    The illustrations are special … we love the one of the Bernacchi house where Louis Bernacchi of Antarctic fame was brought up. The appendices with full useful contents from the register are a historian’s delight.

    Maria Island Convicts – Great work by Rieusset


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