[DWJ] OT: book pricing

Minnow minnow at belfry.org.uk
Fri Jun 23 08:10:26 EDT 2006

>On Thursday, June 22, 2006, at 07:51 PM, LWilkinson at slv.vic.gov.au
>> 3. US mass-market paperbacks are usually pretty horrendous quality. we
>> get
>> a few imports, and the difference in quality is astounding. the US PBs
>> are
>> often on cheap, thin paper with small print and crappy binding that
>> falls
>> apart after one read.

Otter wrote:

>Hmmm.  My personal standard of poor quality is older Penguin
>paperbacks [well, other than Scholastic Books].  I don't think I've
>ever bought a modern US mass-market paperback that fell apart
>like a Penguin.

What generation of Penguin?  There are Penguins in this house that are
still holding together very well after brutal reading by children since
they came out before I was born (the early Gerald Durrells, among others).
These are classic Penguin design with the orange-and-white striped covers.
The only one that's needed radical surgery to keep it going is the rather
thicker *Monkey*, which is held together with yellow insulating tape.

My own first acquaintance with the Patent Exploding Paperback was with
Armada paperback editions of the Monica Edwards books in I suppose the
1970s.  The Puffin *The White Riders* from 1961 is still fine, all the
others, bought-new Armadas, became random-page almost as they were opened
for the first time, and I have been collecting hardback replacements for
them ever since the first reading.  Armada is my personal standard for the
one-read poor-quality book.

In fact a quick check shows that the 1950s Puffins I had as a child are
still in good reading order, and I rather assume they came from the same
printers as the Penguins of the time did.

<starts reading *Bush Holiday*>


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