The Hardy Boys books are just one of the great series that accumulates on my shelves (there are many other equally good, but lesser know series out there!) There is a great article I read about Hardy Boys Series recently and I thought all you vintage book lovers would enjoy it as well: 9 Things a Grown Man Can Learn From The Hardy Boys
I loved the article because it brought to light many of the points that I loved about this series and quality content that I always thought made them worthy books to read. I grew up reading them avidly after being introduced to them by my older brothers, and have just as high an opinion of them now as I ever did as a youngster!
One more great aspect (of the old publications, not the newer ones) is the grand, manly artwork. In the really old editions the boys had manly dressing down perfectly (and sported the most dashing fedoras) and the black and white illustrations were simply grand.
Although I don’t have any in my shop currently (most of them end up on my own shelves… 🙂 hopefully I’ll get a stack in there soon) there are a lot of old copies on Etsy and they make “swell” surprise gifts for boys! Do make sure to check the publication date so you can be sure you get the original book–not the watered down edited version!
If you’re looking for the best Sherlock Holmes book and are overwhelmed by the choices, here’s my advice from 6 years of dedicated treasure hunting in bookshops. As you probably know, many of the great books of yesteryear have fallen out of copyright and are published by in countless editions (almost 4 and 1/2 thousand according to Goodreads), many of them cheaply done in mass paperback printings. But this post isn’t about those, it’s about the best volume for the Holmes aficionado.
Here it is: The Complete Sherlock Holmes, published by Doubleday & Company Inc.
Yes, that’s my cherished antique copy in the above photo. Hidden underneath the rather ordinary dust-jacket is a perfectly handsome, deep-dark navy, cloth-bound hardcover with lovely gold lettering on the spine.
Here’s what makes it so grand:
It’s a COMPLETE collection. When I love a character I want to read every single story he’s in. And when there are over 50, as in the case of Holmes, it can be quite trying to search out every single last one~especially as so many of the books overlap stories or publish only the popular titles… Here in one volume are all four full length novels and all 56 short stories. You can rest assured that you are not missing out on even one adventure Sir Arthur Connan Doyle penned about the detective.
It’s not abridged! Need I say anything else? Not a speck has been edited or changed from the originals.
The mysteries are not loose or randomly ordered, but rather arraigned by book, as they were originally grouped when published (eg. Adventures of Sherlock Holmes, Memoirs of Sherlock Holmes, Return of Sherlock Holmes, etc.)
It is a handsomely bound book. Aesthetics are important. This book, especially when devoid of the dust jacket, is beautiful, dark, and rich, with gilt letterning that gleams when it catches a ray of light. Even when not being read it enriches a room merely by it’s visual addition to the decor.
It’s an antique, a vintage book from the past, you wonder who has held it and where it has been. In short, mystery shrouds the very volume you hold–filling the imagination with delightful possibilities of it’s history…
Quality. Printed in the United States of America. Soundly bound and a sturdy hardcover that was published by arrangement of “the Estate of Sir Arthur Connan Doyle” itself!
Now for the technical details:
Published by Doubleday & Company Inc.
Forward written by Christopher Morley
Measures 9.5″ x 6.5″ x 2.25″
One Note of warning: this book was published many different years and all of them don’t have the same cover under the dust-jacket. So make sure you see a photo of the actual book cover to be sure you like it. Not all of them look like mine. 🙂
Now to the true Homes collector more Sherlock may be added to your shelves, I have quite a few others myself. Just because I have THE Sherlock Holmes book doesn’t mean that I’m adverse to owning a leather bound Hound Of Baskervilles novel. Such books have their time and place and are perfect for loaning to friends or slipping into your suitcase on your next trip, especially when visiting a majestic old mansion in the country for one night and you don’t want to lug around the weight of a large collection.
However this Complete Sherlock Holmes cannot be topped for true fans who want all of the mysteries. It makes a grand gift.
This book can be found many other places ~ it just takes a little sleuthing to find a really nice antique copy. This very same book is nowadays published in a paperback, but there is a fine leather edition that looks quite stunning.
What do you think? Do you have any favorite editions of Sherlock stories? I’d love to hear about them!
Thank you to all of my wonderful customers! I appreciate your business very much and am grateful that you chose to shop in my corner of the internet! I am looking forward to serving you this year and have many great plans for Box Thirteen and mountains of book treasures to present in the shop in 2016!
May we all build grand libraries and fill our homes with the handsomely bound volumes from generations past! Happy New Year to you all!