PAN Fans Club

Let's talk about PAN paperbacks, the blog for those that do judge a book by its cover. Main site is at or

PAN Fans Club - Let's talk about PAN paperbacks, the blog for those that do judge a book by its cover. Main site is at or

Merry Christmas and Lydia Monks.

Seasons greetings PANFans and I hope you get all those elusive titles in your stockings this year. I’ve asked Santa for ‘X705’ AGAIN this year after being let down on so many previous ones. I made a few greetings cards from the artwork above of which I have the original by Gavin Rowe from 1972. If you click on it you can see which book it was for.

As I mentioned last week I would like to say a very big “Thank You” to Lydia Monks who, when I contacted to congratulate her on her ‘Golden PAN Award’ and to ask to buy a signed copy, by return of post sent me a lovely complimentary copy very much personalised for our Grandson William Jack. Unfortunately I am being forced to give it him for Christmas-  Bah Humbug!

Lydia not only dedicated it to William but added all the figures from the story. Mind you I’m keeping the signed card that came with it.

HERE is a page showing Julia and Axel with their awards plus Lydia with hers and several of their book jackets with stickers for milestones over the years.

As for presents I do know I’m getting ‘Flames Coming Out of the Top with the second elusive book jacket but this is only because I bought it myself! Hopefully it will appear in the blog after Christmas when I’ll re-scan all the three variant covers plus the three for “Action For Slander”

Alan and Alice In Wonderland

TalesFromTheGalaxiesAs I’ve mentioned before over the next few weeks I’m showing some of the original cover artwork I was luck enough to purchased recently. One of them was by Alan Lee and I’ve put it on a page along with one I already had which we are pretty sure is by Alan although not signed. I hope to be able catch up with Alan to get him to sign them for me.

On July 4th 1862 Charles Dodgson is supposed to have told his tale to Alice Liddell in a boat on the River Isis. This tale ‘Alice in Wonderland’ was first published in 1865 and has never been out of print for 150 years. PAN as usual decided to do something odd with their numbering and published it as G1 in 1947 and again as GP1 in 1948 but what happened to G2 to G100? It was published as a Piccolo imprint in 1973 and 1977.

Marguerite Patten 04/11/15 – 04/04/15


I had one of those odd, and a little sad, coincidences this week. I was near Cambridge last Wednesday to pick up some books which happened to be the Piccolo Marguerite Patten Cook Books which Eileen Strange had signed for me as she did the illustrations. It was while driving away from the house of a friend of hers that I heard on the radio the news that Marguerite had just died only a few months short of her century. Eileen knew Marguerite and said what a lovely ‘down to earth’ lady she was.

The reason I was collecting the books from Cambridge was that Eillen lives on the Isle of Coll off the Scottish mainland and it was luck that a friend of hers, Cliff from Cambridge, was happy to bring them down, plus several other bits and pieces, for me to pick up closer to home.

Eileen’s first husband John worked in the art department at PAN and rescued some cover artworks. Unfortunately her second husband has recently died and she is now trying to downsize and wants to travel and I was happy to buy a few PAN / Piccolo related items from her,. We came to an amicable settlement and I’ve helped her on her way to Uzbekistan in November.

I’ll be featuring the original artworks in coming blogs including some by Alan Cracknell, Alan Lee and Hans Helweg.

Space Flight & Flight & Flight

Whilst once again flicking through websites showing pages of book covers I spotted a familiar one but with an unfamiliar name at the top.
I already had the
Piccolo Factbook version of ‘Space Flight’ along with the Rand McNally one from the States but I’d not come across Willowisp Press Inc  (St. Petersburg Florida USA) before. The dates are respectively 1981, 1982 and 1984 and all printed by Graficas Reunidas SA, Madrid, Spain.
 Space Flight Factbook