Friday, January 31, 2014

Revisiting Paris

Having revisited Vancouver tonight, I thought I'd also quickly revisit Paris from our holiday last year.  Here's a couple more photos and stories that I didn't previously include in this blog.

Unfortunately I didn't find the famous Shakespeare And Company while visiting Paris but I did find Gibert Jeune on Boulevard Saint-Michel near Notre Dame.  Gibert Jeune have a number of stores containing different types of books in Paris (eg. technical, art etc).  I visited the store containing both new and second-hand fiction books.  You can't see them in this photo but there are actually a couple of security guards out the front of this store to control how many enter I suppose.  On another day when my wife and I walked past there was a short line of people waiting to enter.

This particular store is four storeys high.  There is a single staircase around the inside of the building although I think I saw a lift somewhere.  I imagine the building is quite old too.  My pigeon French was sufficient enough to be directed by a staff member to the Action/Thriller/Spy section on the top floor where I found the following French Bonds including the two Fleming omnibuses below.  Both feature Timothy Dalton on the cover, one new and the other second-hand.

And a French copy of Deaver's "Carte Blanche".

I also asked if I could take some photos and the staff member said Ok as long as I didn't concentrate on any people.  I wish I'd taken another photo though.  There was a bloke with a poodle in the store.  He must have carried it up the four flights of stairs.

A quick stroll up Boulevard Saint-Michel perhaps just one block from Gibert Jeune...
...can be found a couple of second-hand bookstores like this.  Almost all the books are second-hand and people are always frequenting the store, even into the later hours.

In this particular store I found these two Bonds.

And here's another similar store opposite our hotel.  This one was two storeys of books, although upstairs seemed to be mostly Manga.  You can see how busy it was.

Along with the book stalls along the Seine, Paris appears to be alive and well with new and second-hand book stores.  And heaps of people are still buying the books too which is good.

Revisiting Vancouver

Early in September 2013 my wife and I visited Vancouver as part of our self proclaimed "world tour".  There we visited many of the second-hand book stores that exist in the Canadian city and took plenty of photos.  But, as others would also attest, updating a blog while on holiday is not an easy task and before I knew it we were in New York on the next leg of our trip.

Reminiscing tonight about our holiday while flicking through some photos I remembered I hadn't added all of the Vancouver books stores to this blog yet, so here they finally are.

After finding Kestrel Books a few days earlier I remember walking down West Broadway

and seeing this shop awning displaying the words Pulp Fiction Books.  Unfortunately the sign was all that was left of this store... or so I thought.
Because a couple of days later I returned to West Broadway and found the new location of one of their two Vancouver stores.  Pulp Fiction Books is very much open.  They have a huge collection of "pulp" which also included a few Bonds.  The staff were very friendly too.  Here's a link to their website.

I also found this massive children's book store called Kids Books with plenty of new copies of Higson's "Young Bond" novels on their shelves.

Brigid's Books was a nice, clean little store.  As can be seen they had a couple of Bonds.  The unfortunate thing was the store was about to close.  Hopefully it has since opened elsewhere in Vancouver.

Still walking along West Broadway, Tanglewood Books was a well organised second-hand store with a few Bonds on their shelves.  The owner was an interesting person to chat too as well.

I noticed this charity bin for books while walking along the road.  I'd never seen anything like this before.

At night I took a photo of this Thrift Store.  The following day I found an International copy of Deaver's "Carte Blanche" published by Pocket Star for $3 on one shelf.  A great find as I didn't previously have one.

Finally, Carson Books was about an hour walk from where we were staying.  We'd usually take one of the very efficient public transport buses but on this day we decided to walk instead.  This store was really well organised with heaps of books.  They also had a box titled "007 James Bond + Other Brit Spies". I almost purchased the hardback copy of "James Bond: The Authorized Biography" by John Pearson in the photo however I was concerned about international luggage weight restrictions as this was the first country on our holiday.   Now I probably regret it as it was a nice copy.

On our way back from Carson's we walked past "White Dwarf Books".  Specialising in science fiction and fantasy I still had to ask if they had any Bonds.  The answer was a polite "No".  Upon asking if I could take some photos the owner replied "Yes, but only if you take one of Juddy too".

Overall I was surprised at the number of second-hand book stores in Vancouver, especially on West Broadway.  Shame I couldn't just walk up the street and visit them again tomorrow to check if they had any new Bond books.

Friday, January 24, 2014

Piz Gloria Website Launched Two Years Ago Today

Today marks the second anniversary of being launched on the web.

I've looked at my blog entry from the site's first anniversary and it appears I promised to post more stats about the website upon reaching year two.  Well here they are from Google Analytics for the past two years:

Year 1 - Jan 24, 2012 to Jan 23, 2013

Year 2 - Jan 24, 2013 to Jan 23, 2014

So after comparing the two years the basic summary is:
1) The number of visitors has marginally increased from year 1 to 2
2) The time spent on the site and the number of pages visited has decreased from year 1 to 2

There's also been a slight decrease in the number of new visitors over returning ones:

Year 1 - Jan 24, 2012 to Jan 23, 2013

Year 2 - Jan 24, 2013 to Jan 23, 2014 

One thing not stored in Google Analytics is the current number of covers shown on the site that I own.  As of today there are 571 covers shown, while there are also a few more unpublished prototype covers shown on the site which I wish I owned !

Anyway, thanks everyone for visiting and contributing to the stats above and I hope you'll return again soon,

Cheers Bazeer

Monday, January 20, 2014

"Casino Royale" Penguin Covers Infinitum ?

I received three copies of "Casino Royale" in the mail today.  All three books were published by Penguin and have slight cover variations.
I do already have the book on the left which is part of the Richie Fahey US Retro Centenary Series, however the other two are new to my collection.  Both are movie tie-ins, one stating "Soon to be a major motion picture" and the other "Now a major motion picture".  Until I found them on the web I'd never seen these two covers before.

The addition of these movie tie-ins to the PizGloria website brings the number of copies of this cover with small variations to six.  Five were published by Penguin in the US and the other in the UK.  So while using the word "infinitum" in the heading of this blog entry might be a slight exaggeration, the question is, how many more of these covers are still out there?  A quick Google search brings up the two cover images below that I've always categorised as prototypes.  Now I'm wondering if they actually exist?

Tuesday, January 14, 2014

Keep Hunting For Those Gems

When considering purchasing Ian Fleming first edition Bond novels most people would go straight to the web.  And I have to say I'm guilty of purchasing many books on-line.  However it's important to still keep visiting the little second-hand book store or op shop just around the corner.

Case in point are three Jonathan Cape hardbacks I purchased over the Christmas holiday period.  All three books shown below were found in op shops and second-hand book stores for less than AU $25 each.  Two are Ian Fleming first editions and the third is a 1963 reprint of "All Night At Mr Stanyhurst's" by Hugh Edwards with an introduction by Ian Fleming.

"The Man With The Golden Gun" is ex-library with the usual markings inside.  There is also a square mark on the back of the dust jacket, so it's definitely not perfect.  However for $25 I thought it wasn't too bad for a book released in 1965.

"Octopussy And The Living Daylights" was purchased for $20 and is in extremely good condition for another book almost 50 years old.  I think I now have four copies of this hardback, and this is close to being my best copy.

I've been searching for a copy of "All Night At Mr Stanyhurst's" for several years now.  Obviously the only link with Bond is the intro by Ian Fleming, but it's one of those items I've always wanted in my collection. So I was rapt when I found this copy.

So in summary, don't forget to keep visiting those second-hand book stores and op shops... because there are still gems to be found if you look carefully enough.

Monday, January 13, 2014

A New Year And More Books

A very belated Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to everyone.  Hopefully Santa brought you some cool Bond books and collectables.

Over the Christmas period I managed to take some time off work to relax, and also to do a bit of book hunting.  Hopefully I'll bring you some pics soon which includes buying some cheap Jonathan Capes that I found for sale.

Meanwhile here's some books I received in the post over the holidays.  The first is a hardback first edition of William Boyd's "Solo".  This is the Waterstone's red edition which includes Boyd's own signature and the date of release - "26/9/13".  I've read on other websites how cool the dustjacket and cover is with the addition of the bullet holes, and now holding it in my own hands I couldn't agree more.  It's also great to see the Cape logo on the side again.

I also received a US "Uncorrected Advance Proof" edition of "Blood Fever" by Charlie Higson published by Miramax Books / Hyperion in 2006.  I know I've mentioned this before but as a collector the number of cover variations for the "Young Bond" novels is daunting to say the least.  I'll try and scan this cover and add it to the website ASAP.