PAN Fans

Let's talk about PAN paperbacks – the blog for

PAN Fans - Let's talk about PAN paperbacks – the blog for

Miscellany of bits and pieces

Having spent a few days down in Kent, on the Monday, which would have been Ian Fleming’s 110th birthday, we visited St Margaret’s Bay to go to the South Foreland Lighthouse (long story there I might save for another day) The guide pointed out the Granville Hotel from the top of the lighthouse and said that’s where Fleming was staying at the same time as Noel Coward (who wrote ‘Star Quality’) and where Fleming wrote ‘Moonraker’ Now I believed this until I came home and started checking and have to say I’m still a bit confused. The Granville Hotel was demolished in the late 1990’s and apartments are built on the site but as Fleming leased a property in St Margaret’s Bay, namely ‘White Cliffs’ would he stay in the hotel? He took on the house in 1951 off Noel Coward who acquired it in 1945. Fleming also wrote ‘Chitty Chitty Bang Bang’ while living here.

We also saw the house called ‘Moonraker’ at 32, Granville Road and designed after the description of Hugo Drax’s in the book.

I’ve now got two more copies of ‘The Towering Inferno’ film related books but disappointingly it doesn’t say who designed the cover for ‘The Glass Inferno’ but ‘The Tower’ was by the New Studio Inc.

After helping Emma Donoghue track down her Golden PAN Award she very kindly sent me a signed bookplate which I’ve stuck in the front of my proof copy of ‘ROOM’

I’ve also added a couple more scans of UK Exhibitors Campaign books featuring ‘The Last Angry Man’ and ‘Kings Go Forth’

…. and finally Bazeer in Australia spotted another PAN appearing on a television programme and I spotted one a while ago so they’ve now been added to the ‘PAN as seen of TV‘ page.

‘ROOM’ ‘The Dam Busters’ and Ballantine.

Just a quick blog this week as I am down in Kent and trying to do this on my phone is not that easy!

After putting the covers of ‘ROOM’ on the site last week I managed to find my proof copy which I’ve now added HERE 

I also heard from fellow PAN Fan Jeremy Birch asking if I had noticed it was the 75th anniversary of ‘The Dam Busters’ raid on the 16th which now I recall was on the news but didn’t really sink in. HERE is the page I made a while ago to show the many different covers that were used by PAN since 1955.

I’m also communicating with Doug Anderson regarding the titles jointly published by PAN with Ballantine in the ‘Adult Fantasy’ series (not quite as exciting as it sounds) He put on his blog a list of the thirty five titles and I find I have all thirty five with thirty three of them as UK printings and the other two are just Ballantine from the US, sounds like those two are the next challenge. I will scan all the covers and put them on the site soon. Click HERE to go to Doug’s excellent blog.

Finally I’ve just remembered today (28th May 2018) would have been the 110th birthday of Ian Fleming. I did try to find a photo of him with a PAN J.B. but failed.

What Wedding? Emma Donoghue and another badge.

It was odd but last Saturday I seemed to have so many important things to do, watch fox cubs on the old railway line, tie up the bean canes on the allotment, cut the grass and trim the hedge at home which unfortunately meant I didn’t have time to watch the ‘Royal Wedding’ To make up for missing the event of the day I’ve been investigating this riveting read but it only goes up to 1977!

I’ve also been in communication with Emma Donoghue about her missing ‘Golden PAN Award’ and I’m happy to say it’s turned up in Canada and Emma kindly sent me a couple of photographs of her holding it which can be seen HERE.

Lastly a while ago I mentioned I’d picked up a badge featuring one of the PAN logos used in the 1990s. I’ve just got another one but I still can’t find the page I had which featured all the logos of this style for the different genres.

Josephine Blumenfeld, Morse and the Piano

This photograph was apparently taken in 1905 for a guide to Essex and shows a donkey cart on the Saffron Waldon to Dunmow Road lead by nanny Lizzie Drain of Thaxted. Now you may be wondering what this has to do with PAN? Well the child on the right is Estelle Blumenfeld (aged 4) and the one of the left is Josephine (aged 2) Josephine went on to marry Alan Bott, founder of PAN Books while Estelle had a son named Ralph Holmes Vernon-Hunt who became MD of PAN Books and is probably most well know for posing as James Bond on the covers in the 60’s. At the time they were living at Hill Farm, Great Easton, Dunmow.

Coincidently I only noticed this week that ‘Stand Up Virgin Soldiers’ by Leslie Thomas is dedicated to Ralph Vernon-Hunt.

After getting a couple of Morse books from Bulgaria I now find I have ten with the pink/red PAN logo on the covers and they can be seen HERE. I’m still trying to sort out dates as some seem to be the same, just wondering if there was a TV tie-in and a non tie-in version?

I’m always amazed at the range of subjects covered by PAN and HERE is a classic example. I’ve been using it for at least three days but it hasn’t lived up to the cover saying “A quick and effective method of learning to play the piano … now” What it doesn’t say having even a modicum of musical talent might help hence I failed!

… and lastly I have now changed the front page which used to say ‘”25ish Years’ so it now reads ’45ish Years’ or really up to the time we lost the figure of PAN in the logo.

PS Glad to see my hyperlinks are now red as WordPress, after many years of letting me change their colour, decided no matter what I did I was going to get blue. Thank goodness for Google and it appears I was not the only one puzzled but luckily someone put on the HTML code that solved it.

Emma Donaghue, “The Towering Inferno” and Morse

Back in September when PAN gave out six Golden PAN Awards, four recipients were there to collect them in person while Ken Follett got his a few weeks later which left Emma Donoghue, author of million seller “Room”, to have hers sent to Canada where she resides. I emailed Emma and asked if it was possible to have a photo of her holding the award when she received it to which she replied “Happy to send that pic when award arrives, sure” As I’d not heard any more I asked again this week and I got a surprising answer “They never sent it to me! but I’m chasing it up now, thanks for the reminder” so watch this space!

Always on the look out for different PAN related bits and pieces I was pleased to find a printers proof copy of the cover of ‘The Tower’ by Richard Martin Stern. The cover was for the film tie-in ‘The Towering Inferno’ but what I didn’t realise was the film was based on two novels, the other being the “The Glass Inferno” I got an earlier PAN edition (from Poland which arrived quicker than a couple bought from the UK) which has the same image as the American Warner edition and the PAN edition surprised me by being printed in the USA. Click HERE to see the covers although a couple are off the net so I’ve ordered my own copies from the States. I’m hoping they might list the cover artists as the UK ones don’t. STOP PRESS The movie poster has the same artwork as the later PAN edition and it is credited to John Berkey.

Also acquiring early editions of ‘Morse titles by Colin Dexter which still have the pink rectangle/red circle logo on them and I have got up to “The Secret of Annexe 3” from 1986. Just wondering if anyone knows if that logo was used on later titles? I’ll put up the page next week if two variants I found in Bulgaria arrive in time especially as the postage was less than I’ve paid for books sent in the UK…….…… and finally you got to admire the optimism – and not even free p&p!

Model Railways and John Le Carre

Still rescanning in covers and sorting the piles that got moved into the library while waiting for the drawers which are now all in place. I’ve put in a order for some track for the railway which will now go all around the top of the shelves because my wife said she thought that was what it was going to do as seen in some well known bookshops. Unfortunately most of it was out of stock but promised for next week when I will include more pictures.

I’m trying to remember bookshops that we’ve visited with model railways which have included ‘Barter Books’ in Northumberland, I seem to remember one in ‘The Book Shop’ in Wigtown but could be false memory and one in a redundant station in Norfolk, anyone got a name?

I rediscovered my limited edition copy of ‘The Little Drummer Girl’ by John Le Carre put on one side as it was supposed to be signed by him but appeared not to be. Now on having a better look I can see a very faded red scrawl on the front cover which does indeed say John Le Carre. It was limited to 739 copies (mine is 000421) and when I asked a Facebook group if anyone had any idea why Jules Burt suggested that was the number of booksellers but since then I’ve found a copy someone was trying to sell on eBay for £400 but didn’t. The interesting part was it also had a photo of a sales order saying there was no charge and it was for the “Home Buyer (Samples)” Click HERE to see the page.….. and finally another version of the cover by Terry Oakes, the hardback edition of ‘Arbitrage Martien’ although he is not credited this time.

Gino D’Achille and Recycled Artwork

As promised last week I’ve scanned in my artwork by Gino D’Achille and although not PAN, Panther is close! Click HERE to see it.

I also bought a copy of ‘Anticipation’ about the French mainly sci-fi series of books published by Fleuve Noir. Some sellers are asking over £50 for a copy so when I saw it at 12 euros on Amazon I ordered a copy. I then got a message from the seller asking where the price came from as it should be 25 euros? I said that was the price shown and then expected the order to be cancelled but it wasn’t and honoured at the price quoted. The postage was also 12 euros but turns out it was sent from a publishers here in the UK so maybe a bit step. Could be the postage and book price got mixed up but I’m happy.

Many of the covers were recycled from the ‘Young Artists’ group in the UK some starting out as PAN covers.. When I mentioned this on Facebook Jean-Daniel Brèque commented  “ALL of them were recycled. I know at least two writers who worked for Fleuve Noir at the time and who regularly went to the office of the publisher to pick their covers in advance. My friend Michel Pagel, who was working on a tetralogy, specifically picked up four Les Edwards covers featuring a skull in order to make his books stand out”

To see a couple of Terry Oakes covers click HERE. Jean-Daniel also mentioned a website which shows many examples, click HERE to go to the page for Terry Oakes then maybe use the search and go to the Les Edwards page.

“The journey of a thousand miles begins with one step”

“The journey of a thousand miles begins with one step” was supposedly said by Lao Tzu and I feel a bit like that with “The scanning of a thousand plus books starts with number one” I’m embarking on the task of rescanning all my numbered titles which would be 2,391 if they only had one edition but some have several different covers such as “Lost Horizon”. I’m also using it as a chance to rebuild my spreadsheet. So far I’ve done all of numbers 1 and 2!This is the spreadsheet so far, still deciding if this is all the columns I’ll need? I’ve got thumbnails images as comments so they appear when I hover over plus hyperlinked to the image so I can edit them easily if need be.

I came across this newspaper article which seemed to be particularly pertinent after talking about the above.

I had to get a copy of Justin Marriott’s new publication “Hot Lead” (available from Amazon) as the cover features ‘Hart’ draw by Gino d’Achille although he now appears to be left handed. I’ve show all the ‘Hart covers’ before but HERE is the link again.I have looked for some affordable original Gino artwork for a while and only this week realised I’ve had one for years. While sorting non PAN books I looked on the back of a Panther title of which I have the artwork and it is credited to Gino, something I’ve missed before. When I locate the artwork I’ll put it on a blog.

More Exhibitors Campaign books, a couple of photos and the library

I’ve added four more scans of Exhibitors Campaign books that also show PAN titles issued to go with the film releases. They can be seen with the previous two HERE

On Facebook recently there have been a couple of photos from Australian trade journals featuring PAN. I just love the book stand and I am tempted to go through all the titles and put ‘hotspots’ to my webpages for them all but then again maybe not.

… and as promised last week some pictures of my ‘Library’ but unfortunately my camera, which has stood me in good stead for many years, decided to play up. Click HERE to see some slightly out of focus shots of work still in progress hence some untidy bits!

Shelving, Saucy Postcards and Exhibitors Books.

All the shelving is now in place for my library and I’m slowly putting books on shelves and generally tidying up. I will include some photos next week so be warned.

I’ve just picked up a printers proof sheet on eBay for PAN’s “Saucy Postcards Annual 2” which I’ve scanned in and included HERE. I was very disappointed to find my first book of postcards has a very damaged cover which I’d not noticed until I scanned it so I’ve temporarily included an image from the web.

I also picked up some exhibitors campaign books for two films which have PAN book tie-ins and show the covers of the editions published at the same time which are HERE.

Finally we bit the bullet and went away in our camper in spite of the weather forecast and it was not too bad, just a little wet and not as cold as predicted. The site had electricity on prepayment meters and when we arrived ours still had £6.35 credit. No matter how hard I tried with everything switched on I only managed to reduce it by £3.00! While there we visited Coughton Court and I was hoping to include a photo in the section “as seen in National Trust” properties. I found a run of Dick Francis but my wife said they didn’t count as they were in the second-hand book shop!