Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy LE 2023

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Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy LE 2023

toukokuu 11, 7:15 am

Was I asleep when this was announced? Who knew? According to the Summer Edition of the Folio magazine, it's due this month. All five volumes. No price mentioned. At present I'm inclined towards keeping my original set and available shelfspace precludes keeping two sets.

toukokuu 11, 7:20 am

First I'm hearing of it. I doubt I'll upgrade, but we'll see.

toukokuu 11, 8:11 am

"You know that title you probably already bought if you were in any way interested? Well here it is again, only more expensive!!" - Folio's marketing department

toukokuu 11, 8:55 am

I would be very keen. I didn’t buy the previous Folio version and have paperbacks.

toukokuu 11, 9:35 am

Boy, Folio has turned into a popular fiction, unimaginative, and unoriginal company as of late. Every limited edition is extremely overpriced and compared to other companies at the same price point Folio is not worth it - with this LE likely to be in the same category. I used to be so excited for the new Folio SE and LE releases and now I don't even care about looking the morning of release, since, once again there are 0 new releases that interest me at those prices. Stalin is the only one I'm interested in but after shipping and taxes it is $250 for an upgraded hardcover with a slipcase. My annual book subscription from Archipelago which is around 25 books is the same price. Several months ago I purchased a LEC of The Flounder which has better materials with a likely sturdier slipcase in mint condition for $100 which is signed by the Noble Prize winning author!

Out of curiosity why do people still purchase Folio products? I used to find their books extremely fair priced and a downright bargain when it came to the biannual sale but now they are so expensive, sometimes doubling prices from several years ago, with no upgrade in production. Before I felt they were a nice middle ground between hardcovers and fine press but now have gotten much further to the latter with zero improvement. They are just so darn expensive for mediocre production.

toukokuu 11, 9:42 am

>5 Joshbooks1: I buy Folios because they offer a product I can’t get elsewhere. It isn’t my favourite publisher, but I use Everyman Library’s for a base layer of my library and then choose to fill in holes or upgrade preferred works with Fine Press or Folio.
Since January 2022 I have placed 9 orders with Folio Society, it is a mix of sales, standard editions and limited editions. I agree that the value for money is decreasing both at full priced works and in sales, but the quality of some books remains high, and there is little competition for some works. I had Wolf Hall in hardback, but having a signed copy was an attractive temptation (though this is easy to see why others would consider this wasteful). If I look at the Gormenghast limited edition, I think this is a thing of beauty and definitely not mediocre.

toukokuu 11, 10:05 am

It's a mixed bag. They do some beautiful and unusual limited editions, like Gormenghast or Thucydides, but then also repeats of existing editions at exorbitant prices that aren't really upgraded enough to justify the price (Dune, Tolkien, Bond). I unfortunately expect Hitchhiker to be in the latter category - it will probably be the standard edition illustrations with some extra stuff, which would mean that I'm out at their current prices. If they should come up with something original, that might be a different matter.

Muokkaaja: toukokuu 11, 1:42 pm

>5 Joshbooks1: just as a personal note: I've ordered more from Folio in the past year than in the past six years, together. On one hand, I think the balance of what the Society publishes is tilting towards the instagram/tiktok crowds with flashier things and I preferred the more balanced approach of 2010-2020. On the other hand, they have released so many books I've wanted to own in decent editions during the past couple years that I haven't resisted the urge. They published the first luxury edition of The Neverending Story, ever. And that's my favorite book.

The only way I can use 'mediocre' to define a Folio society production is the worrysome trend of increased use of paper bindings for the 50 pound price level. I remember when the Christies, bound in buckram, were priced at 27.95.

Oh, and the LOTR standard set. That is horrible and MUST be updated.

toukokuu 11, 11:00 am

Can anyone sent us an picture of the new LE . I cant find anything on the internet.
Double thanks

toukokuu 11, 11:02 am

>8 dyhtstriyk: I second on the current LOTR standard set. It’s just awful.

Muokkaaja: toukokuu 11, 11:12 am

>8 dyhtstriyk:, >10 Geo135:

Glad I've got my LOTR, then - one of my favourite standard Folio productions, a delight on the shelf, a pleasure to read and looking like new 20 years on. If they were producing new titles with a similar aesthetic I would likely still be buying some even at current prices - depending on the works chosen, of course. "Some will pay for what others pay to avoid"...

toukokuu 11, 11:11 am

>5 Joshbooks1: I buy FS books because they still publish good books that I want in my collection. I find their non-fiction selections often interesting and usually like some of their fiction (I do like some SciFi and fantasy). I agree with an above poster who noted that while some of their content is trendy, they publish a lot more and still have interesting content. I do think their choices 10ish years ago were more interesting and worthy. I also buy LOA and Everyman’s (and other more expensive publishers for SciFi and Fantasy), but LOA (which is great) is US focused only and Everyman doesn’t have many releases each year. The new FS Earthsea books are beautiful. I think there was a time when most FSDers would find most items wish list worthy even if they couldn’t buy everything and now everyone has to be more selective, which means some people won’t find much.

toukokuu 11, 1:12 pm

I don't have any particular loyalty to any publisher, nor any expectation that I'll be interested in 90 (or 80, or 70, or even 10) percent of what any particularly publisher puts out. I buy Folio books when they publish titles that interest me, because I value sewn bindings and slightly thicker paper than the average commercial publisher.

(I will admit, I'd buy more Library of America if I didn't find their covers so unattractive, so it's not just sewn bindings I want. I'm still annoyed that their The Future Is Female set, which actually does have covers I like, is glued rather than sewn.)

toukokuu 11, 1:35 pm

>13 ambyrglow: an additional weak point is LOAs paper thickness. It feels like onion peel. My Shirley Jackson omnibus feels like an old bible.

toukokuu 11, 2:04 pm

Unless it's bound in a towel and priced at £42 I'll stick with the SE.

Muokkaaja: toukokuu 11, 2:10 pm

>13 ambyrglow: “I'm still annoyed that their The Future Is Female set, which actually does have covers I like, is glued rather than sewn.”

LOA distinguishes between two kinds of books. Those “in series,” identifiable by a series number on the copyright page, are the ones that LOA intends to make every effort to keep in print no matter the sales figures, and their bindings are sewn. Their special, or out of series books, come with no such guarantee and are often glued. I’ve never had one come apart, though, not even the glued ones.

LOA’s value revolves more around content than physical structure. I think it’s safe to say that the great majority of their books are available nowhere else in hardcover.

toukokuu 11, 2:35 pm

>1 folio_books:

'Was I asleep when this was announced? Who knew? According to the Summer Edition of the Folio magazine, it's due this month. All five volumes. No price mentioned. At present I'm inclined towards keeping my original set and available shelfspace precludes keeping two sets.'

Who knew? Not this cat.

Is there a picture? Separate volumes? Slipcased set?

If it comes with individually wrapped lemon-soaked paper napkins and a towel to suck on in case of emergencies, I might be tempted but, if it's a Bond-style tarting up of the previous releases at ten times the price, I'll throw myself at the ground, miss, and fly off into the wild blue yonder looking for a party and a nice hot bath with a copious supply of djinn an t'onnix ;-)

(Being serious for a moment: I hope they have at least fixed the egregious textual error in, if I remember correctly, Restaurant, when they omitted several lines and messed up a rather good joke.)

Muokkaaja: toukokuu 11, 2:52 pm

>17 Cat_of_Ulthar: Is there a picture? Separate volumes? Slipcased set?

The article doesn't give all that much away, to be honest. There's a single rather small photo of five volumes stacked on top of each other, the page tops in different colours. I'm leaning towards the Bond-style tarting up. I think the short timescale suggests this will not be a LE to savour. The SE is still available, price $49.95 x 5, so £250. I'm trying to estimate what the LE will be priced at.

toukokuu 11, 3:19 pm

>18 folio_books: Using the Philip K. Dick LE as a proxy, this will be at least $1,000 USD.

toukokuu 11, 4:39 pm

toukokuu 11, 5:37 pm

>19 L.Bloom: wouldn’t be surprising at all. My guess is around the $700-$800 range. Still astronomical when the SEs are perfectly suitable.

Muokkaaja: toukokuu 11, 9:25 pm

>5 Joshbooks1: "Boy, Folio has turned into a popular fiction, unimaginative, and unoriginal company as of late... Out of curiosity why do people still purchase Folio products?... They are just so darn expensive for mediocre production."

Profit, of late:
2018- (320,497)
2019- (213,242)
2020- 285,882
2021- 2,725,569
2022- 1,498,744

toukokuu 11, 11:35 pm

>22 What_What: to be fair, the fact that Folio is turning a much bigger profit now than ever before doesn’t answer the question of why people still purchase their books. It just shows that their new strategy is lucrative. As far as why people buy, I think it just comes down to the fact that Folio has cultivated a nearly entirely brand new demographic in the past two years. It’s a shame they don’t throw a few bones to their long-standing customers with each release though. The customers from membership days who might prefer a few classic texts be included amongst the sci-fi.

toukokuu 12, 12:06 am

>17 Cat_of_Ulthar: Who knew? Not this cat.

Speaking of cats, Khajiit is probably on the payroll ;)

toukokuu 12, 12:11 am

>23 ChampagneSVP: “It’s a shame they don’t throw a few bones to their long-standing customers”
I recently received my first FS order of the year (I agree their books are pricey for what you get particularly if you don’t live in the UK or Europe):
The Neverending Story
Wolf Hall
I was very impressed with the design and quality of all three books and feel that all three are geared towards their traditional demographic.

toukokuu 12, 12:35 am

>23 ChampagneSVP: Many factors, of course. But a big one, as you have alluded to, is that they've tapped into the Instagram crowd. I don't mean to say this in a derogatory way...just an observation that they are maximising the extremely appealing visual nature of their books to an audience that is highly visual in nature / experience, and paired with the Sci-Fi/Fantasy fan-peeps (also on the SM platforms) who tend to get a little obsessed and are fomo-susceptible...it does tend to drive up sales. Their social media 'clues' are part of this dynamic...

I have also fallen off the buying-new-from-Folio wagon over the last 3 or 4 years, but was very tempted recently. But the prices are still like a bucket of cold water.

Apologies for all the mixed metaphors and hyphenated made-up phrases. Late in the week...

Muokkaaja: toukokuu 12, 5:28 am

Re: the price increases, has anyone done any number crunching on this? Obviously the sticker price has gone up, but so have prices for everything - consequently purchasing power is down overall (everything feels a lot more expensive). I remember years ago I made some mental calculation on how much I was willing to pay for a FS book based on the price of a regular hardcover in multiples and it was roughly 2-3x at that time (at least as I recall).
Missing from this discussion is the quality and price of a normal hardcover. Much like the shrinkflation epidemic I think the quality has tumbled and the prices shot up immensely for a bog standard hardcover. At least with local prices the multiple relative to Folio looks more like 2.5x-4x (their spread seems to have increased with more 'premium' priced titles).

I think the visual appeal changes are correct with most titles having bolder designs outwardly and a lot of slipcase designs or cutouts that seem rare in the back catalogue looking back 15 years or so. This shift has led them to deprioritize what many customers consider a norm of having cloth covers in favour of bold designs + price fighting (like comparing The Road to Blood Meridian).

Just to be clear I've reduced my purchases as well, I just think there's a bit more dynamics to the question than FS being greedy.
Edit NB: Also this is more pertinent to the average price, not these LEs in particular. Forgot what thread I was reading.

toukokuu 12, 5:39 am

>23 ChampagneSVP: Yes, you are quite right, quoting the profits doesn’t address the “why,” but rather pointed out the outcome. Though, the dubious claims about prices doubling mediocre quality did seem a slight bit rhetorical in a “does anyone even buy this stuff anymore way.” But thanks for keeping me on the straight and narrow!

toukokuu 12, 6:34 am

The standard edition of The Hitch-hiker's Guide is reviewed at https://www.librarything.com/topic/323989

toukokuu 12, 7:15 am

>28 What_What: Instead of just being snarky why not instead answer the question? Your first post has nothing to do with anything I discussed. As we're all probably old enough here on this forum to understand, popularity does not equate quality. Netflix recently had some dating show that was #1 for weeks with a boyband member as their host. A quick online search shows someone named Colleen Hoover swept the book sales last year in which she wrote at least five novels, yes five in one year, which are all in the top 10 bestselling books of 2022. Just a hunch, but I'd be surprised if they were up to the standards of good ol' Leo or Fyodor.

As for pricing, come on, you've been a member on here and facebook for long enough in regards to their steep increases. Look at the LEs: The Waste Land, Turn of the Screw, Casino Royale, Roadside Picnick, Dune. Are they not all double in price with what they would have been a few years ago? Quality certainly isn't there to justify those prices...

toukokuu 12, 7:15 am

>29 wcarter: as with the Bond novels the SE’s are already so well done I won’t even entertain the LE’s. The only unfortunate thing now is that they cost $70 usd instead of the $56 usd from last year.

Muokkaaja: toukokuu 12, 7:46 am

>27 A.Godhelm: Missing from this discussion is the quality and price of a normal hardcover. Much like the shrinkflation epidemic I think the quality has tumbled and the prices shot up immensely for a bog standard hardcover.

For sure the prices of hardcovers targeted at the academic market (yes, by you, OUP, among many others) are shocking these days: but as regards books marketed more generally I tend to think price rises in recent decades have been fairly gentle.

A couple of volumes pulled fairly randomly (beyond my knowing they would have prices on their dustjackets):

Peter Ackroyd, First Light, 328pp., Hamish Hamilton 1989, £12.95.

Iain Sinclair, The Gold Machine, 421pp. Oneworld 2021, £20.00.

The two books have the same page size. Bindings are comparable except the older volume is sewn: the Ackroyd has yellowed considerably and I expect the Sinclair will have done likewise after 30-odd years. A further factor is the demise of the Net Book Agreement: no bookseller could have offered the Ackroyd below £12.95 in 1989. I see I paid £15.45 for the Sinclair last year, and currently from Amazon it's £13.64.

That's negligible inflation over 30+ years, and not too untypical of the hardcover book trade in my experience. For another couple of examples,

The Confessions of Aleister Crowley, 960pp., Routledge 1983 reprint, fixed price £19.95.

Malcolm Harris, Palo Alto, riverrun 2023, viii+708pp., £30 cover price, bought new yesterday for £26.40.

Again same page size, again the older volume is sewn, but 40 years show very little inflation. In a rapid look at the 1983 Folio prospectus I didn't spot a book priced above £20, and there are many below £10.

I'm not saying the Folio Society ought to be able to offer lower prices, just relating my view that their prices have accelerated much more than those of hardback books generally, with the result that some of us now find them uncompetitive.

toukokuu 12, 8:38 am

Besides the price increases within each price tier, Folio seems to be restructuring it's product line. There seem to be more books in the £80+ premium price tier and the price difference between that that the more standard books also seems to have shrunk.

I have mixed feelings about this. Those premium books have often been quite nice. But in the long run I'm worried that this is just another way to increase prices without a commensurate increase in quality.

The point about inflation, though, is well-taken. Prices in the UK are up about 50% since 2008. So a £40 book in 2008 "should" cost about £60 now, which seems about right.

toukokuu 12, 8:39 am

For those interested, Curious King is planning a fine press limited edition of The Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy with 8 colour pieces and 25 black and white images by Gary Gianni:

toukokuu 12, 9:47 am

>19 L.Bloom: Using Turn of the Screw LE as the scale, this will be $3625.

toukokuu 12, 10:37 am

>33 ubiquitousuk: To be fair to The Folio Society, the comparison may not be that simple.

The production of ordinary hardback books becomes ever more performed by technology, while the planning, design, specification, printing, collating the pages, adding illustrations, binding the text block with unique hardback covers all ensure that Folio Society books require much more skilled human intervention and therefore higher production costs.

toukokuu 12, 11:00 am

>36 English-bookseller:
I suspect that in the very near future the planning, design, and specifications will all be done by AI if they aren’t already. The collating and binding will be accomplished by robots programmed either by humans or AI.

toukokuu 12, 12:26 pm

>30 Joshbooks1: I agree with the hypothesis stated in one or two responses that FS is transitioning to a younger audience that values the 'gram. Pretty books that good on a shelf. That is not my jam but I don't belittle their jam, we all read and purchase for different reasons. Same with literature - I am married to a litigation partner at a large firm who reads quite a bit of dense contracts all day and has no interest in Leo or Fyodor at night, she reads popcorn literature on her kindle. That's what energizes her. While I miss much of what FS used to do they are making money in an era in which publishers are challenged and IMO the only justification they need for their prices is a market that bears those prices. And whatever people want to read, good for them, including Collen Hoover. 🤷‍♀️

toukokuu 12, 12:32 pm

Muokkaaja: toukokuu 12, 12:37 pm

>37 jroger1: I suspect that in the very near future the planning, design, and specifications will all be done by AI if they aren’t already. The collating and binding will be accomplished by robots programmed either by humans or AI.

Remember the old computer saying "Garbage In, Garbage Out" That applies to "AI" programs just as much. BTW "AI" is definitely not intelligent!

And now ... it's cartoon time!

Muokkaaja: toukokuu 12, 1:05 pm

>33 ubiquitousuk: whilst general prices have gone up by 50% since 2008, folio books have gone up by a lot more. A near identical version of Anna Karenina, was £35 in the 2008 prospectus, equivalent to £53 today, however the current version is £85!

ETA: the hobbit went from £19 to £50, but if following inflation it would be £29

toukokuu 12, 1:32 pm

Having just read the magazine article, I'm much more excited about this release than I thought I'd be. No idea if it'll be worth whatever Folio charge for it, but I suspect it will be a desireable edition.

Other note from the magazine: Trainspotting is coming

toukokuu 12, 3:25 pm

>25 kdweber: that’s fair. The Neverending Story is quite finely produced. The illustrations in Monkey are preferable to those in the Folio edition I have from the 60s but for $110 I doubt I’ll be trading up.

Muokkaaja: toukokuu 12, 4:51 pm

>5 Joshbooks1:
Agree with you entirely.

>25 kdweber:
I don't think any FS publications lately have been geared to the traditional demographic, simply because their books are so heftily priced. They've moved into a completely different market, something we 'traditionals' have to accept. FS simply doesn't cater for us anymore - the prices alone are utterly prohibitive other than for the very occasional purchase. As a more 'traditional' buyer, none of those 3 have any appeal, not least because I already have a perfectly good FS copy of Monkey, and a perfectly functional first edition of Wolf Hall (I have very little interest in most children's books). FS used to publish a good variety of editions of interesting books I didn't already have, or in depth collections of classic writers. Not any more.
FS has moved on, and so have I. I remain a devotee, buying several volumes a year, but only (on average) one every 2-3 years from FS itself. Wcarter is a much greater enabler with his reviews of interesting older editions.

toukokuu 12, 5:00 pm

>44 Willoyd: It's funny you mention that actually. I was just thinking the same thing about those reviews the other day. I buy far more second hand FS books inspired by those reviews than from FS itself!

toukokuu 12, 7:11 pm

>44 Willoyd: I’m using demographic as reader interest rather than spendable cash. Since The Neverending Story and Monkey are both books that the FS has printed before I feel that they are by definition geared towards their traditional readership. I replaced my 1st edition trade hardback with the FS edition of Wolf Hall. I’d buy the new Monkey over the old FS Monkey at each book’s release price but I agree that FS books are quite expensive and I buy way fewer books from them as a result. I must admit that Wcarter has inspired me to buy quite a few used FS books. Usually at really good prices.

toukokuu 12, 10:12 pm

As has been noted, the quality of most trade editions has deteriorated in the last few years with some exceptions (e.g.LOA and Everyman's). The paper is usually a cross between newsprint and sandpaper. If feels like the pages will turn yellow by the time I get it home from the bookstore. (Do any mainstream publishers use acid free paper anymore?)

Amazon has become so slipshod with its flimsy packaging (boxes with no padding or mere plastic bags) that half the time the book, already poorly made, arrives with dents or tears or both. Although FS prices have increased and in some cases quality has decreased, they remain one of the few places where you can buy a book that's worth owning. However, I have little interest in Hitchhiker's SE or LE but would certainly welcome a SE of Gargantua & Pantagruel (having hesitated too long on the LE).

toukokuu 13, 12:27 am

I've read a lot of people griping about the quality of the books materials, without recognizing what Folio Society, etc. offers in terms editorializing and content. I guess about a year ago FS sent me a survey asking me what was my favorite book I purchased from them. I said Ulysses. But, I was wrong. I completely forgot the William Faulkner The Sound and the Fury editions with the colored ink, which is something Faulkner thought would be great when he wrote the book, but was cognizant that, at the time, it wasn't technologically feasible. I thought it was so cool that Folio worked with the eminent Faulkner scholars of the time and produced the colorized version. Suntup is currently running rings around FS precisely in this department. Suntup adds tons of original content you probably didn't know existed.
Also FS informs you of the translators of a foreign work. Easton Press doesn't even mention who the translator of a book is, as if it doesn't matter. If you disagree with the FS choice of the translator you could just not buy the book. But at least you know. Furthermore, FS does choose translators that they think are worthwhile even though they probably have to pay extra for rights rather than going for an out-of-date translation. A good example is their publication of Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Seas where they used the William Butcher translation and not the Mercier Lewis translation though the Lewis is probably out of copyright.
The appeal of LOA is that in addition to the fair quality of the book, they try to have authoritative texts. They aim to copy the French La Pleiadie series in trying to THE edition to have of a country's literature. USA for LOA and France for La Pleiadie. But FS also is similar. In the US, for some strange reason the text of the Amber Spyglass of the His Dark Materials Trilogy has a change in the text because it was deemed too racy for the US. While FS wouldn't sell me a His Dark Materials edition with the original UK title for The Northern Lights, they did say that the text would match the original as intended.
These are things that don't necessarily seem to trouble "fine publishers" like Letterpress publishers. They also, sometimes, just have a basic text without any seeming thought put to why they used one version over another. For people who love books, it seems a little silly to not recognize FS and LOA for their efforts to mind what it is we are actually reading.
As for editions with paper instead of cloth. I don't think FS necessarily does it to save. They used paper for Brave New World and for The Bloody Chamber and it's fine. They use "crushed silk" for the Sun Tzu and I think it's fine too. And I don't think "crushed silk" is some luxurious, expensive material.
Also, while I don't praise Easton Press much, I will say that they have a one volume edition of Hitchiker's Galaxy, which I think is appealing compared to buying five independent slim books. At the very least, I don't know why they don't sell Hitchiker's Galaxy as a set, like His Dark Materials. I would also note, I was disappointed that they started printing Pullman's Dust books individually instead of waiting and releasing them as a set.

toukokuu 13, 5:40 am

Is there any information on this edition in the latest magazine / catalogue and if so, on which page? I just looked through the upload and only saw the standard editions.

toukokuu 13, 6:03 am

I can understand Folio wanting to exploit the Instagram/Fantasy market with limited editions like this, but I don't see how they can tempt us so effectively when the standard Folio editions of Hitchhiker's Guide are so brilliantly done (and still available direct from FS!). The binding design, volume size, illustrations and typesetting of the regular Folio HGttG all seem perfect, it's hard to see what can be improved. A box in the shape of a Vogon airlock; a signed print of Wonko the Sane, or of a falling bowl of petunias (assuming they're willing to sign); a numbered towel?

>48 billburden: Furthermore, FS does choose translators that they think are worthwhile even though they probably have to pay extra for rights rather than going for an out-of-date translation.

Unfortunately that's only sometimes the case. The 'new' Folio edition of Monkey has a charming binding and illustrations compared to their first edition, but it's basically lipstick on a ham (it's not even a full pig) as they've re-used the same severe abridgement of the full work in the same old translation which is notably inferior to the widely acclaimed, more recent translation by Anthony C. Yu. I would have bought a Folio edition of the Yu translation of the full 'Journey to the West' in a heartbeat.

toukokuu 13, 6:51 am

>49 SF-72:

I think it’s in the magazine and not the catalogue.

toukokuu 13, 8:35 am

>52 SF-72:

Thank you for your help. I was looking in the FS wiki, the Summer Catalogue 2023, but couldn't find what someone here had referred to. Could someone please guide me to where one can look into the magazine on here if there is such a place? I looked under the link below but could find only a list of the magazines and the current catalogue. If the info about the new LE isn't there, could someone maybe post a photo of the relevant page(s) here?


Muokkaaja: toukokuu 13, 10:03 am

Viestin kirjoittaja on poistanut viestin.

toukokuu 13, 6:32 pm

>5 Joshbooks1: I agree with you. But there are people with far more money than I have and given the lack of alternatives, I've been tempted to purchase one. All they need to do is delight a few thousand select customers. They aren't trying to be mass market with limited editions like every man's library.

toukokuu 13, 9:55 pm

>50 cronshaw: I said "that they think are worthwhile. . ." I don't always agree with their decisions. I was disappointed in Monkey's translation choice as well. I'm also not a fan of Pevear and Volokhonsky. But reasonable arguments can be made. For Monkey, I think the argument would be that it is the abridged Waley translation that has been such a big hit, whereas if they used the new Penguin Lovell translation, it's not as well known. So, they're making the argument that they believe the historical importance of a translation has value. John Minford argued as much in his new translation of the Tao Te Ching for Penguin, which he argues he feels that using an older, but more widely known, edition of the text, is important. I wasn't too keen on his argument, but I felt he truly felt he made the correct choice.

toukokuu 14, 3:50 am

>55 billburden:

The fact that they used this supposedly popular but abridged version of Monkey was the reason I didn't buy it. And I'd been hoping for years that they would publish Journey to the West, but not in a mutilated version, which this one is, popular or not. Thank goodness people on here warned us about it. The same goes for Phantom of the Opera by Easton Press, which is beautifully illustrated but abridged. Personally I think that publishers like these two should know and do better, FS more so than Easton Press who often do facsimiles with less than ideal translations just for the visual aspect. Their Phantom was a new book in that regard, though. You can always argue about style when it comes to translations, but to me, there's really no discussion when it comes to abridged works. I avoid them like the plague.

toukokuu 14, 8:39 am

>48 billburden: I think Folio could do much better with translations to be honest. Archipelago Books and NYRB Classics publish mostly international books with new translations, with both publishers frequently getting translation awards. Although paperback, these books are 1/5-1/7 the price of Folio and NYRB even has a foreword or introduction in the majority of their books.

I get that publishers like Folio and Easton don't focus on these areas as other publishers and I don't hold that against them, but, for the most part, they don't offer great choices. If I was basing my reading experience on readability I'd likely look elsewhere. Luckily, Folio rarely publishes international or translatable works these days so need no to worry!

toukokuu 14, 11:27 am

>57 Joshbooks1:

'Luckily, Folio rarely publishes international or translatable works these days so need no to worry!'

The latest release includes books by three Americans (King, Twain, Le Guin); a British-born Indian who lives and works in America (Lahiri); a Swede (Mankell); four Englanders (Burgess, Fleming, Smith & Montefiore); and an Italian (Rovelli)

Why worry, eh, mate. ;-)

toukokuu 14, 6:22 pm

>58 Cat_of_Ulthar:
So 80% Anglophone and 20% everything else.

toukokuu 15, 1:27 am

>59 Willoyd:

Looking at the Spring collection, it's very similar:

British (Banks; Christie; Clarke; Macintyre); Russian (The Strugatskys); American (Theroux; the various Doctor Strange writers and artists; Wolfe); Chinese (Wu Ch'eng-en)

Nine titles, four by Brits, one by Russians; three by Americans*; one Chinese.

I don't know if I have the patience to go back further but I suspect it would be much the same. International in that the authors are often from outside the UK but, as you say, very Anglophone-centered.

*I don't have a list of all the authors and artists included in the Doctor Strange collection but the ones mentioned in Folio's description were American.

Muokkaaja: toukokuu 15, 9:34 am

It seems like I'm in the minority here, but regarding Monkey I'm very happy with an abridgement and find Waley's translation hugely enjoyable. If we're talking about abridgements only, and if the main criteria is pure reading enjoyment, I prefer Waley's slightly meandering style to Lovell's more modern and direct rendering, which (IMO) lacks some of the beauty of Waley's prose. Everyone’s taste will vary here, but for anyone considering these two abridged options for the first time, I strongly recommend finding some excerpts to compare. I can't comment on the abridged version of Yu's translation of the full work.

Looking at the object itself, the latest edition of Monkey is one of my favourite FS acquisitions of recent times and compares very well with the clothbound FS books I own from any era. I really like the tall, slim format, and attractive binding, which is in a soft cloth. The illustrations are just lovely, well suited, and packed full of lovely little details that reward the reader with repeated viewings. I really cannot recommend them enough. The fold out map feels like a bit of a gimmick to me, but it's well drawn.

I do wish there was a nice FS edition of Journey to the West for those that want it. It certainly seems like there's a strong appetite, and it would sit very nicely alongside this edition of Monkey. However, they would serve two entirely different purposes, and this edition ticks the right boxes for me.

To take up >50 cronshaw:’s analogy, I'm pleased they applied this lovely shade of lipstick to the ham (or should we say to Pigsy?), rather than dispensing with the ham altogether :)

Yes it's expensive, ridiculously so when I think about it - I try not to! Unfortunately, £40 to £100 is what I expect to pay these days for a slipcased, clothbound, sewn, illustrated, offset-printed book with a unique binding design.

Who does the same kind of thing for less? No sarcasm here, genuinely asking!

>5 Joshbooks1: You'll get no argument from me about the incredible value proposition of early Schiff-era LEC books like The Flounder. I recently received this too for a similar price and agree it's terrific. If it's just a question of how best to spend $100, I'm with you 100%. That being said, the absurdly low price of these LECs makes everything printed today seem expensive in comparison, including letterpress books and chapbooks from modern fine presses; though I don't for a minute dispute the value of the craftsmanship involved in those cases vs an offset book.

toukokuu 15, 12:38 pm

>61 GardenOfForkingPaths:
And of course buying LECs (which is what I mostly do) may keep some booksellers afloat, but it does nothing to prop up the market for new Folio Society-type books.

Muokkaaja: toukokuu 17, 8:25 am

>61 GardenOfForkingPaths: I'm glad you like the lipstick! A big disappointment for me, besides the translation, was the lack of continuity, with Folio having lately published both The Romance of the Three Kingdoms and The Outlaws of the Marsh in their entirety as multi-volume sets, allowing English speakers to enjoy the whole universe of these Chinese classics in recent translations. Why they've stuck to the severe abridgement of Journey to the West that 'Monkey' represents, especially when the same text is already widely available in Folio on the secondary market baffles me, unless it's to simply save costs.

toukokuu 17, 10:50 am

>63 cronshaw: I'm reading the abridgement in the current Folio version and enjoying it very much. I'll definitely use the phrase 'chamber of metabolic transmigration' in the future.

What would a reader of the abridgement miss out? I understand that what Waley removed was a lot of banter and many doctrinal debates. I see the abridgement as the 'good parts version', akin to the (fictional) Princess Bride Goldman abridgement.

toukokuu 17, 11:54 am

I note that the Anthony C Yu 1983 translation of Journey to the West comprises four 450-500 page volumes.
What on earth could have put Folio off?

Muokkaaja: toukokuu 17, 11:56 am

Tbh i wouldnt be interested in reading 4 450-500 pages volumes. 🤣😅
Monkey was an enjoyable read, it had the right length not to bore me

Muokkaaja: toukokuu 17, 12:57 pm

>63 cronshaw: Oh don't get me wrong, I'm all for an edition of the full translation, and you make a great point about the importance of giving it a wider readership in the English speaking world. FS has a good platform from which they could do that. I just think there's a definite place for the abridgement as well, and that, IMO, the latest version represents a significant and worthwhile improvement in design (externally and internally) over the previous edition, which I always felt was a bit pedestrian.

For me, Monkey was a first, fun and manageable entry point into exploring Chinese literature, so perhaps that's why I have a particular fondness for it. There will be many people reading it for the first time because FS just published it, which for me is an overwhelmingly positive thing.

As for why they would revamp the old one over doing the full work. Who can say. Could be costs, it's huge popularity and accessibility, or perhaps also concerns about how well a huge multi volume set would sell. Also, there's a whole new generation of Folio collectors out there for whom this edition of Monkey will have a much greater appeal than the old one.

I guess you can't always please everyone and there are other times I've been on the displeased side! Anyway, I appreciate the discussion about our respective opinions and certainly smiled at the lipstick analogy. If they ever do a full version, I'll definitely join you in the celebrations.

Muokkaaja: toukokuu 17, 12:25 pm

>63 cronshaw: Curious about FS Outlaws of the Marsh - is it possibly abridged as well? I've noodling on buying it and the 880 pages total is much shorter than the four volume editions I find online (see, e.g., link below). Given the large number of illustrations in the FS edition I assumed it must be abridged in some way as well.


Muokkaaja: toukokuu 17, 1:36 pm

>64 dyhtstriyk: Glad you like it too! 'Chamber of metabolic transmigration' sounds delightful and I hope you can squeeze it in surreptitiously somewhere, be it work e-mail or cocktail party. I completely understand that some people prefer quite an anglicised text, where beautiful prose that could have been penned by Eliot or James meanders like the Thames through willows and alders. I don't mind some sacrifice of that perfection in the target text in order to retain more cultural accuracy and nuance from the original. Unfortunately, it seems you can't have both.

>68 LBShoreBook: My understanding is that there are several versions of the novel 'Outlaws of the Marsh' that have been in circulation since the 14th century, ranging from 70 chapters (Folio's version) to over 120, so Folio's version doesn't appear to be an actual abridgement per se.

toukokuu 17, 1:53 pm

Regarding Outlaws of the Marsh, the first 70 chapters are what are generally considered the "original" work and tell the story of the rebellion of the 108 outlaws. The subsequent 50 chapters tell further adventures of the outlaws after the rebellion and were most likely written by subsequent authors and appended to the original, although it's obviously a major debate amongst Chinese literary scholars.

toukokuu 17, 2:13 pm

>70 HonorWulf: Thank you, that's a lot clearer than my half-explanation!

toukokuu 19, 9:09 am

I just got the Magazine together with my order and i would immediately order this LE . It looks fantastic. 😍

toukokuu 19, 10:01 am

>72 AlexBookshelfFrog:

Would it be possible to share the information from there, maybe also a photo? It would really interest me what they're planning here.

toukokuu 19, 10:10 am

If anyone tells me how iam able to share pictures here I will gladly share a picture of the LE Book 😅

toukokuu 19, 1:42 pm

toukokuu 19, 1:52 pm

>73 SF-72:
I can't find the lead for linking my camera to my computer at the moment but the article in the magazine does make the Hitchhiker LE sound more tempting than I initially thought.

Jonathan Burton has created a new colour spread for each volume plus b+w illustrations throughout. The books will be contained in an 'extraordinary, entirely unique box' which apparently caused 'a lot of "oohing" and "aahing" in the office'. There are new covers, a new typeface, a new, slightly larger, setting, and four-colour printing throughout. And the print included with the set features 'digital holographic silver foil printing.'

Some of the new b+w illustrations are included in the article and look lovely but there's only a very small picture of the books themselves which doesn't reveal much and no picture of the box.

toukokuu 19, 1:56 pm

>67 GardenOfForkingPaths: 'As for why they would revamp the old one over doing the full work. Who can say.'

According to editor Sinead O'Callaghan (quoted in the magazine), the Waley translation is 'not just iconic but it also paved the way for Eastern literature to be taken more seriously in the West.'

Of course, costs and other factors may also have played a part.

toukokuu 19, 1:59 pm

While I have the magazine handy, the latest discount code is TMAG4. Excludes LEs and titles released after 1 September 2022. Offer ends midnight 3 August 2023.

toukokuu 19, 3:51 pm

toukokuu 20, 2:02 pm

>67 GardenOfForkingPaths: I agree there's a place for an abridgment. I believe there is a more up to date Yu-translated abridgment as well.

One other thing to note is that Journey to the West is one of the four "great" Chinese novels (the others being Three Kingdoms, Outlaws of the Marsh, and Dream of Red Chambers). Given the stature, I would think it would be worth the full work. Imagine if Folio released an abridged Crime and Punishment? I know they need to consider the bottom line and are at least partly an entertainment company, but if they can do obscure travel and exploration works, seems like they do want to maintain a degree of cultural cachet or feel some obligation as cultural curator.

toukokuu 21, 10:00 pm

>80 abysswalker:

I think it is also important to understand the structure of the work. The work is very long and very very episodic. These episodes often involve similar structures where there is a diversion to get/save a thing/person and the plot and characters are not meaningfully changed at the end of it. Abridging Crime and Punishment would involve removing chunks that probably would meaningfully change the readers understanding of the characters. This is why the abridgement "Monkey" is so popular and considered somewhat literary by its own merits, whereas a crime and punishment abridgement would never be.

Muokkaaja: toukokuu 22, 8:29 am

I see it’s now up for pre-order. £600 doesn't seem tooooo crazy. Slightly larger format, more illustrations, foil edges & a print. Not sure that the ‘fabulous’ outer box does much for me though. Nice idea to have a ballot for copy 42 though !

toukokuu 22, 8:21 am

I love it. The box, the new typography, the new illustrations. Probably out of my reach, price-wise (especially since I have the three books from that set I really want in Folios already), but it's a great production even if I won't own it.

toukokuu 22, 8:49 am

I think it looks great. If I didn't already have the full standard edition set, I would have jumped at it. The only thing I don't like is the box, so I would have put the books on the shelf without it...

toukokuu 22, 8:53 am

Looks like it's taken some design cues from the Dick set and a lot more hamsome that I expected.
I got rid of my original standard edition copies after giving up the series at book 3 (or was it 4?) but I don't recall any artwork and the text sharing the same page but if it's new for this edition it has been set together rather well. That said I wasn't won over enough to regret selling my set and so won't be picking this up as a replacement.

Also, still with the gimmicky prints!!!

toukokuu 22, 8:56 am

I think it's an impressive package - much more so than the Bond effort. At £600 though it is the latest LE to make the PKD edition look like amazing value for money. Agree the ballot for #42 is a nice gimmick.

toukokuu 22, 9:00 am

I ordered it. I like it, though will confess the illustrations leave me a little cold, and am disappointed that Rovelli wrote a preface (in my eyes the most overrated author I have read in the past few years).

toukokuu 22, 9:48 am

If I was a fan of Hitchhiker, it looks like a reasonable value proposition. (Meanwhile I will sit here dreaming of a The Dark Is Rising sequence reissue with similar production values/price.)

Muokkaaja: toukokuu 22, 9:48 am

Went ahead and ordered it, I have not purchased a lot from Folio lately so was happy enough to place an order. I do not have the standard editions so it was an easy decision once I saw it.

toukokuu 22, 10:00 am

I'll add another vote to the "looks nice but I'll keep my original set, thank you" movement. And I agree the No. 42 ballot is a great idea, not to mention a neat way to increase early sales.

toukokuu 22, 11:05 am

I listened to the radio series, bought the paperbacks, watched the TV series, played the Infocom text adventure game, saw the film, bought the Folios. I think I've done my bit.
Also (controversial opinion) I always felt that Terry Pratchett took Douglas Adams's writer's block and made a good career from it. Such a shame that Adams didn't write more ...
However, I would always be up for a Folio 'The Meaning of Liff'

toukokuu 22, 11:33 am

>82 antinous_in_london: '£600 doesn't seem tooooo crazy.'

Not in comparison to the Bond or Turn of the Screw LEs, no, at least not to me.

I understand those who are happy to stick with the original set, a perfectly reasonable response because those are really nice editions.* For myself, they've tweezed it enough for me to pre-order it. (You have to smile, though, when they promise you Express Next Day Delivery on a title which hasn't actually been released yet!)

Agreed that the number 42 lottery is cool and froody. But perhaps the print run should have been 756 (i.e., a multiple of 42)?

Now, when are they going to get around to Dirk Gently?

* Apart from that missed text in Restaurant - if they haven't sorted that out for the LE I am going to be setting a Frogstar Scout Robot Class D on them ;-)

toukokuu 22, 11:59 am

I think it looks really nice, but happy with the SE set. Also not a fan of the sets in boxes.

Muokkaaja: toukokuu 22, 12:20 pm

>92 Cat_of_Ulthar: As mentioned above, it makes the PKD set, which this definitely seems to be modelled on, at double the size for £105 less, seem like a bargain. Conversely to me it makes the Bond & Turn of the Screw look even more over-priced. They’ll have had to reset the text to add in the extra illustrations so hopefully the omissions in Restaurant have been corrected while they were re-jigging things!

£25 for ‘express next day delivery’ in a month or so’s time - what a bargain (cough) ! I’m not even sure when the set is due for release as i can’t see any approximate ship date given anywhere.

toukokuu 22, 12:33 pm

I like the books but unless Munken Lynx Rough is made of golden pulp the books are ridiculously expensive. FS seems to have nurtured a fancy doppelgänger for a very specific market.

toukokuu 22, 12:36 pm

>92 Cat_of_Ulthar: I didn’t know about missing text. Can you please elaborate?

Muokkaaja: toukokuu 22, 12:45 pm

>95 bacchus.: Size isn’t everything, but I’m not sure this could really be called ‘ridiculously expensive’ when the 168 page novella ‘Turn of the Screw’ is currently selling for £500 (£5 more than the massive 2560 page ‘Complete PKD Short Stories’ Limited Edition).

toukokuu 22, 1:04 pm

>97 antinous_in_london: There are definitely other ridiculously expensive books from FS -but summoning the “ridiculous” as a baseline for comparison seems like a slippery slope…

toukokuu 22, 1:26 pm

>96 bacchus.: In Restaurant, there is (or, at least was, in my old Pan editions) an exchange between Arthur and a waiter, which, omitting non-speech, runs:

Waiter: ' ... this is Milliways - the Restaurant at the End of the Universe.'

Arthur: 'End of what?'

Waiter: 'The universe.'

Arthur: 'When did that end?'

Waiter: 'In just a few minutes, sir.'

In their earlier edition, Folio omitted the third and fourth lines which rather undermines the joke. It is, perhaps, a small thing but, since Adams famously sweated over every word until his forehead bled, I do hope Folio have corrected the error.

toukokuu 22, 1:27 pm

I've really got the impression that they went too high with some of the recent prices, which showed in poor sales, and they're now trying to find a better balance between getting a large sum out of a limited edition, but still keeping it in a range that will sell. I do think this is rather expensive, but yes, there have been crazier prices around lately. The Bond being an example - it's completely over the top in my opinion while here you at least get a large number of new illustrations, some nice ideas for the binding and box and 5 books for 100 Pounds more than the Bond. That doesn't make this remade version of the existing books a great deal, but better than other recent ones.

toukokuu 22, 1:30 pm

>99 Cat_of_Ulthar:

One certainly does hope so, that's a rather bad mistake to happen. It's sometimes quite astonishing how publishers mess books up. I know an edition of a novel where the paragraph that solves the riddle of the murder is missing in the first edition. Which just happens to be a text that's relevant for exams here. Unbelievable.

toukokuu 22, 2:04 pm

>100 SF-72: If I recall correctly the recent Shirley Jackson LE at £250 & LOTR at £1000 both sold out in a couple of hours, which suggests they pitched the pricing well, whereas the recent Casino Royale & Turn of the Screw are still plentiful weeks/months after release. I’m sure that if the Bond (and maybe the Turn of the Screw) had been £250 rather than £500 it would probably be long gone by now. Given its presence in the last sale (& possibly in future sales also) maybe the seemingly widely unloved Rob Roy will actually sell out before Casino Royale !

Muokkaaja: toukokuu 22, 2:05 pm

A definite pass for me, not only because of the price and their being in a closed box (I like my spines to keep an eye on me) but because the standard edition is just so perfect to my eye. More simple is often more beautiful.

toukokuu 22, 2:28 pm

Looks like decent value for money by LE standards. But I'm one of the troglodytes that read the books and couldn't understand what the fuss was all about.

toukokuu 22, 3:15 pm

Beautiful set! Not enough to nudge me to upgrade (prefer the aesthetic of individually slipcased books on the shelf versus a decorative box), but definitely an attractive and thoughtful design from Folio. Hopefully, the Dick Gently books follow soon.

toukokuu 22, 3:16 pm

>104 ubiquitousuk: Good though the books are, I think that the original radio programme is the most perfect incarnation.

toukokuu 22, 3:25 pm

>106 red_guy:

Oh, for sure, everything sprang from the radio series. The characters really come to life on the radio. I've revisited it several times.

toukokuu 22, 3:30 pm

The BBC released a free version of the Infocom text adventure of the Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy from 1984 here:


Rather primitive by ChatGPT standards, but entirely written by Douglas Adams with Infocom, the U.S. games house, who made some amazing stuff! Well worth a go (if rather difficult).

toukokuu 22, 3:34 pm

>107 folio_books: Peter Jones as The Book, and the transplanted bit from some Eagles song as the main theme ... quite magical!

toukokuu 22, 3:39 pm

>102 antinous_in_london:

Tolkien is a kind of automatic sale, which I found particularly glaring in this case since I got a set of these books in nice quality and with the majority of the illustrations for 60 Euros. Going from that to 1000 Pounds seemed like a very bad joke to me, and one I could easily resist, though others clearly couldn't.

And absolutely for the rest of what you wrote. They went too high with Bond and Turn of the Screw, but hit the right mark with others. I'm sure it's a balancing act, but I've got the impression that they went too high a few times since it looked for a while like anything would sell, no matter the price or what was actually offered above the original editions. I'm pretty sure they thought the Bond was as safe a bet as the Tolkien, but it clearly isn't.

toukokuu 22, 3:40 pm

>105 HonorWulf:

I'd like to second the Dick Gently books. I really don't know why there's no nice release of those yet.

toukokuu 22, 3:49 pm

>110 SF-72: I agree about LOTR. the latest 4 volume boxed set from Harper was printed in Slovenia and has 'near Folio SE' production values. I got it for 60 pounds.

toukokuu 22, 11:47 pm

>111 SF-72: Totally agree and share your befuddlement. The first one is pure genius.

Of the Hitchhiker's series of books, I reread them in the last year (since being a teenager) and thought:
Hitchhiker's = 5 stars. Great fun.
Restaurant = 4 stars. Almost as good.
Life, Universe = 2 stars. The Krikkit thing really irked me. Maybe a tad unfair, but almost hated it. Might try again one day when I'm in a better mood.
So Long = 3.5 stars. really enjoyed it.
Mostly Harmless = 3 stars. Actually enjoyed the darker mood and ending. But was lacking a little energy and spice.

As for this new set, I also love the originals, so nah.

toukokuu 23, 8:10 am

The edition is already showing up as out of stock. Do you think this is temporary due to the raffle for number 42 or are they really sold out?

toukokuu 23, 8:30 am

>114 AdPacem: Just noticed that too - I have to think it’s due to the raffle - that many selling out in 24 hours would be incredible. I can’t remember exactly how quickly LOTR sold out, but a twenty-four hour sell out would have to be close to that.

toukokuu 23, 8:33 am

>115 vmb443: Yep, looks like it is just the raffle, they commented a few minutes ago under the edition's release post on facebook. They didn't give an indication of how many are already sold, but they will become available again at 2pm UK time

toukokuu 23, 8:41 am

Presumably they want to ensure they have an accurate list of all orders made before the draw deadline before opening it up again.

toukokuu 23, 11:24 am

I'll gladly keep my original set, as expected, thank you

toukokuu 23, 12:20 pm

I know im usually a downer on this site but as a US customer i dont see how paying $600 extra for a solander box, limitation number, and a few minor upgrades is worth it. What am I missing?

toukokuu 23, 12:31 pm

>119 Joshbooks1:

Personally, what did it for me was the large number of new illustrations, about 40 if I got it right. That's not a minor upgrade to me, since illustrations are a main reason why I'm not just buying some cheap, ordinary edition, but something from a publisher like FS at a much higher price. Apart from that, I rather like the metallic elements, though I do wish they'd extended that around the whole edge, not just the top. Suffice it to say, I was surprised - I'd expected not to be interested since I already had the old editions and had found it easy to resist the Bond, Dune or the Tolkien set. The box and limitation number definitely aren't the reason for me.

Muokkaaja: toukokuu 23, 3:16 pm

>119 Joshbooks1: There are five double page colour illustrations, 30 black and white illustrations (some quite large), a new preface, a new artist's introduction, printed endpapers, metallic top edges, a new binding, the dumb print, and the box which you mentioned. And the dimensions of the books appear to be a bit larger than the previous printings.

Some of the new things are kinda big - the illustrations - and then lots of small things. I guess for a lot of people it makes for an overall much nicer set of books than the previous editions - in 24 hours half the copies sold. Though it'll be interesting to see how long it takes the other half, with the lottery being concluded.

toukokuu 23, 7:17 pm

Hmm i suppose but at 2.5 times the price if one were to just buy the SE series new from folio it's hardly a deal for the perks mentioned; just an expensive upgrade.

That said if it were a series I loved I'd consider purchasing it and understand the hype.

toukokuu 23, 8:00 pm

It’s a definite buy for me as a fan of the series, for all the reasons What_What underlined.

It’s not a deal by any means, but it is worth the upgrade for me.

toukokuu 23, 8:46 pm

I am not particularly a fan of the series, but I have to say, it looks like Folio have done a very good job with this L.E. The books look a good size, the artwork looks appropriate and fits the story. Nice cover and binding.
It makes me think of the recent discussion on what makes you buy a book. Content is still the most important thing for me and although I am not excited by the story, I am tempted to purchase this L.E.

toukokuu 24, 3:43 am

It's a £350 difference between buying the individual editions at 'standard' level vs. upgrading to the LE. Obviously that's not nothing, but £120 per volume for something as nicely produced as this — even the typography looks vastly more well-considered than the edition I have at home — doesn't seem absurd. Well, it does, but not by collectors-of-nice book standards.

Besides, we all know that these things will sell for double on the secondary market. It's Hitchhikers'!

Muokkaaja: toukokuu 24, 4:47 am

>119 Joshbooks1: I think that at £50 per volume of the standard, versus £120 per volume of the limited edition, then this LE looks much better value than most of the recent limited editions, and even some like the signed Wolf Hall and Neverending Story. The size of each volume is only a fraction bigger than the standard edition (I would have preferred even larger), and I do concede the box isn't amazing, but even so this is much cheaper than I expected. I was expecting £1000 for something similar to this (better but not game-changingly better than the standard). I don't think we can criticise the FS too much here, because they are probably seeing the secondary prices going for much more than they initially sold the works for and feel they left money on the table.

One slight criticism I would make is that I would have preferred it if this set was breathtakingly better - even at a higher price point - but when we see recent LEs such as The Turn of the Screw, Casino Royale, Roadside Picnic I think that they are just trying to produce as many LEs as possible, rather than spending a lot of time creating an ultimate LE.

toukokuu 24, 5:18 am

I have the standard edition so I see no need for this LE. Money saved...

toukokuu 24, 6:36 am

>121 What_What: Those are still pretty impressive numbers, even with the lottery. Is there a way we can check how many copies are still available?

toukokuu 24, 7:53 am

>128 AdPacem: 381 copies available at the moment. You can check by seeing how many it will let you add to the basket.

toukokuu 24, 8:20 am

>129 assemblyman: Thank you! Looks like 380 right now

toukokuu 25, 8:41 am

Just arrived with DPD. Comes with a towel! I see website has over half sold.

toukokuu 25, 8:56 am

I just received mine - the towel surprised and confused me! The box is much nicer than I expected. However my gripe is the foil on the front of the books, on almost all volumes it is imperfect especially at the edge of the book. If the process used cannot perfectly apply the foil then a design should be considered that won't make use of this. I haven't ever contacted the FS about the state of a book, but would be interested if everyone else is suffering from this

toukokuu 25, 11:23 am

>132 DMulvee: I've noticed this on my copy too. Particularly on the fifth book where it's very noticeable. But all of them suffer from it, especially along the edges as you say. I'm umming and ahhing over getting in touch with FS to see if I can get a replacement for the fifth book but sounds like it could be a widespread issue - someone on the Facebook group also mentioned the same issue on theirs.

Can I ask how flush your box fits together? Mine only sits fairly flush on one side and the rest seem kind of bent with gaps through which I can see the red inner.

toukokuu 25, 12:29 pm

>132 DMulvee:

That doesn't sound good. Do you mean the globe by the foiling on the front of the books?

toukokuu 25, 1:12 pm

>133 Bookworm5041: Now you mention this I can see it isn't totally flush, and I can see a slight dent in the base where I can see some red (this is quite minor though!)

>134 SF-72: Yes

toukokuu 25, 1:16 pm

I saw a comment on FB which said the LE books are much thicker than the standard editions. Can anyone with both confirm and comment on the difference in the paper?

Muokkaaja: toukokuu 25, 1:18 pm

Hope I get lucky 😞 Such things aren't right. Iam not sure they can/will give an replacement. Let me now when you guys reached the support. Would love to hear what they say. jsg1976 Bookworm5041

toukokuu 25, 2:42 pm

toukokuu 25, 6:05 pm

>132 DMulvee: Same issues with mine. But I’m also noticing some imperfections on the box.

toukokuu 27, 5:06 pm

>99 Cat_of_Ulthar: Nope, they didn't replace the missing text in the LE, in the scene that takes place at the end of Chapter 14 in Restaurant, unfortunately. I'd assumed if it had been brought to their attention they would've fixed this in the reprint. Although small, as Cat_of_Ulthar points out, it's a printing error that affects the flow of the dialog and should've been addressed. Maybe they can print a correction page I can insert?

Overall, the LE is a nifty edition that will take pride of place on my shelves because most everyone I know appreciates it whether they read these books or not. I didn't win the lotto for #42, and was denied #54 (what you get when you multiply six by nine) by CS that says it's not part of their service to give us what we want, but I still am impressed with the package.

Have towel, will travel.

toukokuu 31, 9:43 am

>133 Bookworm5041:
You heared from Folio ?

My order came today and on three books is the blocked metalic foil damaged on the front and on all of them on the sides aswell.

The Box isnt 100% accurate too. I can see the red edges of the bottom box...

Not sure I feel satisfied. It was extremely expensive and looks used/damaged already 🙄

toukokuu 31, 10:14 am

I recieved my set last week. Parts of the foil printed titles on the book spines had rubbed away and the metallic foil on the front and border on all of the books showed signs of damage (parts of the metallic foil had rubbed away). The box was fine. As you can imagine i was very disheartened :(

I am currently waiting on a replacement set from folio. Fingers crossed this new set will be in a much better state.

toukokuu 31, 10:38 am

>142 garilar:
You write Folio and sent the old one back ?

toukokuu 31, 11:13 am

Really surprised they didn't fix the text omission in Restaurant... The foiling less so as I've had minor issues with both Roadside Picnic and Ubik in terms of flaking.

toukokuu 31, 11:15 am

Does anyone else have problems with the metallic foil on the tops of the pages? 4 out of 5 are just fine in my set, but the red one is spotty and striped. Fortunately, I don't have any of the described issues with the foiling on the covers and spine, but I must say that I'm not happy with this, especially because I really enjoy such edges. If it's not the norm, I'd contact FS about it.

My box has a small gap, too, by the way, but if I press firmly on the lid to close it, it's barely noticeable so nothing I'd consider an issue.

Muokkaaja: toukokuu 31, 11:53 am

> AlexBookshelfFrog

I contacted folio as soon as seen the damaged to the books. Sent them a bunch of pictures showing the damage via customer services email. Since then i have had a couple of emails apologising for the damage and a new set will be issued with the same LE number attached. Hopefully i will receive the new set this week.
I was given a free of charge return postage slip to attached to the box to return to folio. Return via post office. Folio have been really good dealing with my complaint. Now am just eargerly waiting on this replacement set


The foil edging on the top pages was fine on the set i received. The box was ok from what i can remember

toukokuu 31, 12:16 pm

It's a shame that Folio got such low goods control it seems.
Even on the Collector’s Editions, I have a lot of trouble with the Slipcases. They are way too large or narrow, very often. The latter is worse since it will damage the book and not protect it

toukokuu 31, 3:44 pm

>146 garilar:

Thank you.

toukokuu 31, 7:17 pm

>144 HonorWulf: The quality of the manufacturing is regrettable. However, the textual error is unforgiveable. I would want my money back. You would expect a Folio book to be better than the typical commercial version of a book. But with the textual error that you mentioned, I would think a common paperback with the correct text is better than a nice, hardback version with a textual omission.

Muokkaaja: kesäkuu 1, 12:49 am

I can think of no better example to show how far FS has fallen. This is an error that has been known about for years. It is frankly contemptuous of the reader, their customers, to include it in an LE. They can’t seem to get their decorative baubles correct here, either. This edition will guarantee another round of healthy profit, though, as that’s what matters.

kesäkuu 1, 5:14 am

>149 billburden: I would think a common paperback with the correct text is better than a nice, hardback version with a textual omission.

Totally Agree!

kesäkuu 1, 5:39 am

Sad to see. Uncorrected text screwups are especially foul given the costs here. As to the metallic foils it seems to be a recurring problem. The only Folio book I've considered grumbling over is the PKD Short Stories where the foil on the slipcase seems to want to come off at the slightest touch. Since it's just the slipcase and not the book I didn't make an issue of it, but I've noticed it's a recurring theme across titles and involved here as well. Must be something about the process of the foil adhesion that's just not good enough. The foil stamping (mostly titles) seems fine, and I've not seen regular issues with gilding so it's specifically something about the way they do these that fails QC.

kesäkuu 1, 5:41 am

>150 cwl: It might be a case of selection bias in the threads I'm rememering but it seems there's a real split between the quality of LEs depending on whether they're classic or modern titles; the latter seem to suffer more production errors and faults and consequently seem to be treated as quick cash grabs compated to LEs that are classics which I seem to be under the impression as having less complaints raised in the threads I remember for them.

kesäkuu 1, 10:16 am

Absolutely unacceptable that the textual omission wasn't fixed. A mistake is understandable, once. Folio failing fix it, at this sort of price point especially, is straightforwardly contemptuous of their customers.

kesäkuu 1, 12:52 pm

I suppose once upon at a time The Folio Society stood for a deep knowledge and love of literature and the skills and expertise in publishing fine books.

Now marketing skills and cost management count for much more than they used to in British publishing generally as it's not just The Folio Society that is affected.

kesäkuu 1, 2:14 pm

>155 English-bookseller: Yup, a company I once loved with the complete Letterpress Shakespeare being my favorite of them all. Now, for me, it's a lot of overpriced gimmicky products.

I mean, a towel? Really? Surprised the LOTR LE didnt come with a plastic ring where you can push a button to light up the elvish (?) inside.

kesäkuu 1, 2:59 pm

>156 Joshbooks1: I’d argue given the absurdist nature of the novels that the gimmicky inclusion of the towel is more appropriate here than it would be just about anywhere else. By taking it seriously you miss the point. It’s not serious. It’s nonsense and it’s supposed to be.

Muokkaaja: kesäkuu 1, 3:28 pm

>153 wongie:
Looking through the LEs, I think that's because the classics productions are a lot less 'flashy', using rather more tried and trusted techniques. There seem to be an awful lot of rather gimmicky productions nowadays. But that may just be my own rather conservative bias on books and bindings kicking in.

kesäkuu 1, 4:02 pm

>158 Willoyd: I agree with this assessment. LEs have skyrocketed in price and I'm not seeing where the extra cost is going if not for the absurd enclosures and ephemera. Looking at some of the best LE productions they have done, the focus was almost entirely on the book itself. Moby-Dick has an understated solander box with a commentary volume. It is one of the most desirable LEs FS has ever done. I fear that if it were produced today it would be presented in a miniature wooden Pequod with a pouch of spermaceti oil.

Muokkaaja: kesäkuu 1, 10:20 pm

I do think this is a very nice set... although at the end of the day I passed. That said, I hope Folio continues along this line - first the PKD stories and now the Adams set - and hope to see more such science fiction editions. My #1 pick would be the Earthsea Series - I know the FS has released "standard" editions, but they also did the same for Adams, so give us a beautiful Earthsea Cycle!

>159 L.Bloom: miniature wooden Pequod with a pouch of spermaceti oil
well, I'd actually be interested in seeing that now that you bring this up :D
By the way, I do agree their Moby Dick is a beautiful reproduction of the Lakeside Press edition (which is something truly special), but for anyone that has missed that, you can find nice facsimiles on the cheap. Also YES! on more commentary volumes - that was one of the true highlights of their LEs.

kesäkuu 1, 10:25 pm

>158 Willoyd: I agree that the classic productions tend to used more tried & tested techniques so tend to be more reliable when it comes to quality. I can’t imagine one of my favourite recent LE’s - the Gargantua & Patagruel LE with neon covers, holographic foils & a gimmicky box.
The text omission is unforgivable especially as they had to reset the original SE texts anyway to fit in the new black & white illustrations which are interpolated throughout the pages of the LE.

Muokkaaja: kesäkuu 2, 8:02 am

>158 Willoyd: Is it actually a case of techniques or materials though? Surely foiling is an old, tried and tested technique, there's no shortage of standard edition Folio titles blocked with gold and silver foil over the decades, both classics and modern, that have no problems to the degree that other titles, like this one, might be facing.

If anything it seems, in this case, either an issue with the "holographic foil" itself (i'm not sure if this is just a sales pitch to mean coloured foil, which there have been examples of coloured foil used like the blue on Starship Troopers or red on Martian Chronicles), or Folio wanting a cheaper service that Kingsbury Press (which seems to be a new, or a more recent, binder FS is using) offered thus applying the foil in a slapdash fashion, and seemingly forgoing any decent Q&A, rather than necessarily the technique itself.

Muokkaaja: kesäkuu 3, 6:17 am

>156 Joshbooks1: That would have been an awesome idea! Maybe when the other two books are released. Would you mind if I emailed them to suggest it? I can give you full credit.

kesäkuu 6, 9:28 pm

If you look at other publishers of fine books like Thornwillow Press you will see they are asking far more for their LEs. Hitchhikers is a gimmicky story so the presentation is apropos. Even welcomed. It doesn’t take away from the quality of the paper, binding and printing. Look at Easton Press. Their printing is pure crap. More like photo copying. I sent back many and refuse to buy their current editions. Niobe does what folio does. I have LEs from many different publishers including LEC, Thornwillow, John Henry Nash, Easton Press, and if you want just high quality limited editions like Arian Press you won’t pay several hundred but several thousand. I have many Folio Society limited editions like Wilfred Owen and for the money it is unmatched in design, quality of paper printing and art. The art is over the top and are engraving to boot. So you may rant about Folio but I appreciate them and the quality they produce and the thoughtfulness in design is unmatched IMO!

kesäkuu 7, 12:28 pm

>159 L.Bloom: remember to factor in royalties which probably add a fair amount to the price of LEs that are still in copyright. Authors typically get about 10% (perhaps more on a luxury edition) and the usual publisher of the book also needs to be compensated. It doesn't seem unrealistic to imagine that royalties might add 25-30% to the cost of an edition not in the public domain.

kesäkuu 7, 2:03 pm

>164 ixthus12: for the money it is unmatched in design, quality of paper printing and art
Guess we'll just have to disagree. The FS does some wonderful productions, but they're no better than Easton Press in my opinion. I appreciate both - Easton Press always binds their books in genuine leather and some people love that. Folio typically uses cloth, and that is fine too. Folio books tend to have more colorful illustrations, an EP book might only have a frontispiece, but others do have color plates. Many Easton Press books are signed by the author - I would say that is one of their biggest selling points. Overall they're both comparable in quality and price.

if you want just high quality limited editions like Arian Press you won’t pay several hundred but several thousand
Easton Press and Folio Society are in general not in the same league as true fine presses such as Thornwillow, LEC, St. James Press, etc. Also Thornwillow books are always limited as is true for any fine press since it's letterpress and a one-time deal. That said, their editions are printed with different bindings so that in principle anyone can afford a copy. For example, their wonderful Parable of the Sower can be purchased for as low as $125 or as high as $4000 -- the former being paper wrapper and the latter a one-of-a-kind leather bound edition. As for LEC books, many are simply beyond magnificent and can be purchased for insanely cheap prices on the second-hand market. I've noticed in the past few years, prices are steadily climbing especially for their more sought-after editions, but in general most any LEC is a steal -- you're getting high-quality letterpress books at a fraction of their value and in many instances, below the cost of a comparable Easton or Folio edition.

Muokkaaja: kesäkuu 11, 8:49 am

Snatching defeat from the jaws of victory? In addition to failing to correct one textual error, Folio then managed to add a new one, as shown in https://www.librarything.com/topic/328482#8163432

I'm also seeing some of the scuffing in the foiling that others have described. Not major but definitely there.

It's rather depressing because these are actually beautiful books which improve on the standard editions in some respects. The cloth used for the bindings is smooth and silky and feels lovely; the paper used is thicker than that used in the standard editions so that the text on the reverse of the page is barely visible; the new illustrations are delightful; and I much prefer the layout of the text in the LE - the whiter paper and extra space lets it breathe more, metaphorically speaking.

Such a shame that it's spoiled by the unnecessary flaws.

I'll be keeping my copy but Folio definitely could do better.

(Edited for spelling error.)

kesäkuu 11, 10:05 am

That’s pretty funny. To save time - they used the world “universe” instead of galaxy on the content page.

kesäkuu 11, 7:01 pm

To be fair, space is big. Really big.

kesäkuu 11, 7:16 pm

Yeah, I had to triple check that it wasn’t a new expanded edition.

kesäkuu 11, 9:46 pm

I think the marketing folks would have made a Big Bang out if it, if that were the case.

kesäkuu 15, 3:35 am

>99 Cat_of_Ulthar: I just checked my SF Masterworks edition of this, and the dialogue is included in this edition (still available to buy on Amazon).

kesäkuu 22, 1:26 pm

>172 Tamachan00: 'I just checked my SF Masterworks edition of this, and the dialogue is included in this edition (still available to buy on Amazon).'

Thank you, it looks like a nice version.

Between my crumpled old Pan paperbacks (which have the correct text) and Folio's editions (which have so much else to enjoy), I think I am probably fine. I have now had a few weeks to sit down and enjoy reading the first two volumes and, at least for me, even with its flaws, the LE is just so much nicer than the standard edition.

One of the big differences is the paper. Regarding the upcoming Beowulf LE, somebody else said: ' ... the only thing I would change about it would be to upgrade the already decent paper to something truly luxurious.' (https://www.librarything.com/profile/abysswalker)

The paper here is much, much nicer, but so is the typesetting. It is, I find, much easier and more enjoyable to read.

If I had to give up one of these two? Sorry, standard edition, you are out of the airlock.

Muokkaaja: heinäkuu 12, 11:58 pm

If anyone has placed this in their shelf near their taller books or LEs, have there been any issues with the glitter from the lid rubbing off onto the book(s) it's touching on the shelf? For example, I'm wondering if I should place a smaller, slipcased book (probably my original FS Hitchhiker's book, just for fun, and also because more glitter would not hurt this book) between the Hitchhiker's LE box and, for example, a cloth covered clamshell box?

I'd obviously prefer to not need the smaller / slipcased book in between for organizational purposes, but I'll do it if it'll protect my other nicer books.

heinäkuu 30, 9:01 am

Bought a copy been a fan since the 90’s when I first discovered the series. Looks like a nice set and it comes with a towel also LOL!

heinäkuu 31, 4:06 pm

Does anyone have pics of their copy and overall what do you think of the set?

heinäkuu 31, 4:51 pm

>176 Carl64: The pics on the FS website are accurate.

I am happy with my purchase. It's a bit controversial because of a couple of absurd errors, but this being an absurd SF series, I roll with it.

The books are certainly premium in every way - I especially love the thick paper used, making the ~200pg books all seem a little bigger. The new b&w art integrated into the pages and two-color printing throughout (for page and chapter numbers) are details I appreciate. I also enjoy the tactile feel of the silk-like cloth cover.

As a fan, I'm not disappointed.

heinäkuu 31, 7:03 pm

>176 Carl64: I love it very much! From the site and the unboxing videos I somehow got the impression that it was unappealing large, but when I took it out of the packaging I was very pleasantly surprised because it's quite compact & adorable while still being appropriately substantial-feeling & weighty.

It looks stunning overall, and both the box and the books are lovely. The book sizes themselves are larger than the older FS versions, the text is bigger, the paper is MUCH thicker (I believe the color illustrations are printed directly on this thick, matte paper rather than on any photo paper or anything like that), and there are many more illustrations thanks to some new color pictures and abundant b&w images which allowed the illustrator to give life to other characters, scenes, etc. which they couldn't do for the original FS commissions — everything feels very cohesive. I also love how the text layout has been modified in places to account for the uniquely shaped and sized b&w images, making for a fun reading experience! The feel of the smooth, silky cover* and the beautiful, tactile cover foiling - e.g. you can feel each of the individual stars on the cover - is also perfect. And of course I adore the metallic page tops. Really, this is the ultimate Hitchhiker's set.

*I'm not usually a fan of silky covers like with Neverwhere and Anansi Boys - they usually have to grow on me - but it really works here with the solid dark blue color and the whole space thing. It looks and feels exquisite on these books.

I had read the FS version of Hitchhiker's book one only a few months ago and I read the LE version a few days ago and the latter definitely wins. It's a whole new, unparalleled experience. I just started re-reading LE book two!

MORE PRAISE: As for little details, I also just love seeing the book spines through the yellow 'DON'T PANIC' screen - it's a very nice aesthetic - and the print of the Guide itself is really well done with the body of it being metallic but the screen being/feeling like soft-touch laminate.

heinäkuu 31, 7:48 pm

>178 BooksFriendsNotFood: Thanks for review! I can’t wait to get my copy I am supposed to get it Thursday and will let you know my thoughts.

Muokkaaja: heinäkuu 31, 8:19 pm

Viestin kirjoittaja on poistanut viestin.

heinäkuu 31, 7:55 pm

One other question did you get the towel?

heinäkuu 31, 8:41 pm

>179 Carl64: I hope you love it! And yep, my towel came folded so neatly in the box that I keep it there and only take it in and out to reach the books. I guess you could say I always know where my towel is!

heinäkuu 31, 9:07 pm

>182 BooksFriendsNotFood: Cool! Can’t wait to get mine!

Muokkaaja: elokuu 1, 3:15 am

I like the books too. Gorgeous Illustrations and quite a lot. They made good decisions for creating this, but I dont like, at least it seems so, that Folio had an very bad quality control this time.
Alot of people including me had problems/damages with the stamped metallic foil which is a big downfall.

elokuu 1, 8:08 am

>184 Ragnaroek: Hope mine isn’t damaged since I am in the states it would be a pain to return.

elokuu 1, 2:44 pm

Surprised it hasn’t sold out yet but given the price tag I can understand being hesitant. I almost didn’t buy it but since I like the series so much I couldn’t resist.

Muokkaaja: elokuu 2, 4:01 pm

Received my copy and all looks good high quantity. The only thing was the top of the book sleeve inside was torn near the top of the Don’t panic sign so requested another replacement cover. I was able to put a piece of scotch tape over the tear so I could put the top on without it tearing more.

elokuu 2, 6:51 pm

>187 Carl64: Sorry to hear about the damage. Hope FS is able to handle that for you quickly.

Muokkaaja: elokuu 2, 7:46 pm

>188 BooksFriendsNotFood: Thanks it’s not a big deal but since I paid that amount I think they should replace it. The books are as you describe so wasn’t disappointed and very happy all around. And loved the towel!

elokuu 3, 7:17 am

They already contacted me and will be sending an extra slipcase in about a week they have to order some more. Must of had a few requests from damage.

elokuu 3, 11:52 am

>190 Carl64: glad to hear they are replacing slipcases rather than the whole edition, which makes sense all around and helps keep the total number of copies in circulation more stable.

elokuu 3, 12:31 pm

>191 ubiquitousuk: Yes and less hassle of sending the whole set back. I had a similar thing with another edition with Easton Press it was a five book set also and a few books were damaged and was able to replace the three and keep the good ones.

elokuu 3, 2:43 pm

>189 Carl64: >190 Carl64: So glad to hear that you're pleased with the set and that you'll be getting a new case!

elokuu 3, 5:26 pm

>193 BooksFriendsNotFood: Thanks! Reading the first book and liking the size and and overall quality of the books.

elokuu 3, 6:07 pm

>194 Carl64: Right? Everything really comes together to enhance the reading experience. (The books also just feel really nice to hold haha!)

elokuu 3, 9:41 pm

>195 BooksFriendsNotFood: Also the illustrations are awesome makes you feel like you are part of the story!

elokuu 3, 10:03 pm

Curious what did some of you do with the towel? Do you just keep it in the slipcase or use it?

elokuu 3, 10:05 pm

>196 Carl64: Agreed! The books low key feel like their own movie adaptations.

elokuu 6, 7:07 pm

>184 Ragnaroek: Curios what defects were on your copy and did you ask for a replacement? I just noticed on mine where the metallic stamping missed a few areas not much but noticeable if looking close up.

elokuu 6, 10:48 pm

>199 Carl64:
The metallic stamped foil was rubbed slightly off on some books.
The books paper, illustrations and presentation-box are top notch. Really loveable and well designed. If you compare it with Turn of the Screw LE or James Bond LE it was an theft, buying it for that kind of price. 😄

elokuu 7, 10:12 am

>200 Ragnaroek: Cool probably normal for most all of the books to have that stamped foil to have some little flaws. My thoughts exactly on the set.

elokuu 8, 12:13 pm

They are sending me full replacement I thought it should be just better quality than what I received. Hopefully the replacement is better.

Muokkaaja: elokuu 8, 12:34 pm

>202 Carl64: How bad was your copy? I thought about complaining but didn’t (I haven’t ever complained). However, I’m not sure I have seen any images of a perfect copy, so if it the imperfections can only be seen when up close, your replacement might not be any better

elokuu 8, 2:39 pm

>203 DMulvee: You could tell more on the first book even far away so that’s the main reason I decided to get another set. Also book 2 and 5 were missing some of the stamping on a few areas mostly spotty. Also in the middle of the first book in between pages had some black spots. So since I paid that amount decided to exchange. If it would have been cheap wouldn’t have bothered.

elokuu 8, 2:57 pm

>204 Carl64: That doesn’t sound good! I think you were wise to raise these issues and go for an exchange

elokuu 8, 5:02 pm

>205 DMulvee: Thanks! I felt the same way I usually don’t complain either. Hopefully the other set is much better.

elokuu 9, 7:13 am

Well I am pleased to say that my Hitchhiker's LE arrived today in absolutely pristine condition, so not all sets have faults.

elokuu 9, 10:17 am

>207 wcarter: Glad to hear that they dispatched my replacement I am sure it’s probably just a few that were defective.

elokuu 9, 12:01 pm

>207 wcarter: 'Well I am pleased to say that my Hitchhiker's LE arrived today in absolutely pristine condition, so not all sets have faults.'

I'm glad to hear that. It's a really beautiful set, as I have said above, if you can live with the textual issues.

My set has some blemishes but I'm going to stick with John Peel here: 'Life has surface noise.' It's like some of my best friends: they bug me at times but I love them despite that. And, if you actually take your books out and read them, they are probably going to get a few more blemishes, so just relax and enjoy your shoes :-)

elokuu 9, 5:08 pm

>209 Cat_of_Ulthar: Nice glad to hear most everyone is getting nice copies which means my replacement should be good to go.

elokuu 15, 6:57 pm

Received replacement and everything looks good only thing was inside sleeve the top where the Don’t panic sign is a slight tear so used clear tape and that kept it from tearing when putting back on. Same thing with my first one I received also. I think when they assemble them and put sleeve on it must tear easy if not put on carefully.

syyskuu 2, 7:43 am

Well they sent me a good case actually two cases just to make sure. And even sent a hand written apology for the damaged case. Now that’s excellent customer service!

syyskuu 2, 10:27 am

>212 Carl64: Yay! It must’ve been so frustrating that even the replacement was damaged so glad you finally received the perfect box you paid for!

syyskuu 2, 10:46 am

>213 BooksFriendsNotFood: Thanks! It worked out well though since I have a extra case just in case! 😂

Muokkaaja: syyskuu 2, 11:06 am

>214 Carl64: True! Hurrah for the backup box ◡̈

syyskuu 4, 1:10 pm

The paper quality of these books are probably one of the best that I have come across and will last for generations. Munken Lynx Rough paper is thick and tough and one of the best for any background art.

syyskuu 11, 5:13 pm

For anyone who might want a nice edition that is under $200 delivered (in the USA) - EP's Complete Hitchhiker is back in stock -

It definitely is not as glamorous or limited as the FS edition. But again, it's also under $200.

syyskuu 13, 8:27 pm

One of the scenes I've remembered fondly since I first read this series in high school all those years ago (Science Fiction Book Club editions) is the opening chapter of "Life, the Universe and Everything" when castaway Arthur is visited by the bored immortal who insults him with "You're a jerk, Dent, a complete kneebiter."

I've laughingly recalled this line many times with friends when talking about Hitchhiker's Guide and thought the insult was perfectly absurd and non-sensical.

To my surprise, this is not the insult that is printed in this Folio Society edition. With a big grin and already starting to giggle when I got to this part in the book, I was baffled when I saw the line printed "You're a jerk, Dent, a complete a**hole."

At first I thought I had made a mistake, but how could I have fabricated such a strong memory about this line? A little Googling provided some clarifcation.

Apparently, the US editors decided that "a**hole" was a bit too strong of language to print in what was probably considered a book marketed to juveniles and an unknown editor came up with a replacement: "kneebiter"

For me, the joke has always been memorable since "kneebiter" is such a bizarre insult that I had never heard before and fits perfectly in the scene with an alien that springs it on a desperate Arthur Dent, leaving him speechless as he climbs back into his long, silver ship and leaves.

This is not Folio's mistake, it was apparently the insult Douglas Adams wrote, and how it was published originally. Does anyone have any other information about this? It seems DA would've been the goto person to come up with an alternative insult for the US version, so I'd love to give him credit for coining "kneebiter," but I didn't find any confirmation of this.

syyskuu 14, 3:50 am

>218 BionicJim: It is possible that "kneebiter" tips a lid to "anklebiter", a common slang expression in Australia, and maybe the UK, referring to small children or annoying small dogs.

syyskuu 14, 4:41 am

>218 BionicJim: The US edition of the same book also replaced "fuck" with "Belgium".

(not a sentence I ever envisaged typing)

syyskuu 14, 5:33 am

>220 InVitrio:

Ye gods. lol

>220 InVitrio:
>218 BionicJim:

I hate censorship like that and really didn't expect it in Hitchhiker.

syyskuu 14, 9:11 am

>220 InVitrio:

Presumably with the same thought process that gave us 'Ugandan affairs'?

Muokkaaja: syyskuu 15, 12:59 am

>222 affle: 'Presumably with the same thought process that gave us 'Ugandan affairs'?'

Adams himself wrote in the radio series of Hitchhiker that Belgium is the rudest word in the universe, only used by loose-tongued types such as Zaphod Beeblebrox or us poor benighted Earthlings (because we don't know what it means). Perhaps that's why the American publishers thought it an appropriate alternative? I agree with >221 SF-72:, though, that they should have stuck with the original.

As to why Adams chose Belgium? An ironic play on the old stereotype of Belgium as boring? That's one suggestion I've heard but I don't know if anyone knows for sure.

Edit: having listened to the relevant episode again last night, I swapped '-lipped' for '-tongued' to match Adams' own preferred phrase.

syyskuu 14, 12:23 pm

Maybe so he could also use "you stupid Ghent!" as an expostulation?

syyskuu 15, 1:01 am

>224 InVitrio: 'Maybe so he could also use "you stupid Ghent!" as an expostulation?'

Heh, very possible :-)

syyskuu 17, 11:33 am

>218 BionicJim: I looked in my UK trade edition and indeed saw a**hole. This upset me because a British publication should surely say a***hole.

syyskuu 18, 6:15 pm

That's not really a British insult. But Wowbagger is presumably influenced by the Hollywood films he sees on Thinkpix.