I bought a large lot of Dana Girls picture cover books, which I received on Wednesday. The books were in very high grade condition, and I upgraded around 18 of the books in my set. In some cases, I chose to keep the book I already had if it was an earlier printing, with the drawback being that I was keeping a book in lesser condition.
In a couple of cases, I ended up keeping both books due to printing anomalies. The Secret at the Gatehouse is unusual because the ink on the top edge appears to be lavender rather than the usual green or uncommon blue that was mentioned in this post.
I wondered if the color would match any of the Judy Bolton or Connie Blair picture cover books.
The ink does not match at all. I then considered whether the ink could have been blue that has faded. Below, I have photographed the book next to a book with the blue ink on the top edge.
The ink does look like it could have been blue originally. The reason why I tend to be skeptical is because of the high grade of the lot in which this book was found. The rest of the books all have the green on the top edge, and the green is not faded like often seen with these books. Since the other books do not have faded ink, I feel like the ink on this book is probably not faded.
I also found a Stone Tiger in this lot which is of interest. In my post about the Stone Tiger I found with the blue on the top edge, I stated that I believed that it was the first printing. Pictured here is the book I just found along with the book with the blue on the top edge that was the subject of that post.
The book with the blue on the top edge lists to Stone Tiger on the back cover. On the inside, it lists Nancy Drew to Moonstone Castle and Dana Girls to Stone Tiger. The book that I just purchased also lists to Stone Tiger on the back cover. However, on the inside, it lists Nancy Drew to Moonstone Castle and Dana Girls to Lost Lake. I now believe that the book that lists to Lost Lake on the inside is the actual first printing.
With a series like the Dana Girls, we do not have a detailed price guide. In fact, we do not have a guide at all. With Nancy Drew, we know about all of the printing variations, but with other series, we have very little idea. I have seen many Stone Tigers that list to Stone Tiger on the back cover and inside. I have always assumed that they were the first printing. It appears that the true first printing lists to Lost Lake on the inside and is quite scarce by comparison.
Also of interest is the great difference in colors of the artwork from my two Stone Tiger books.
I like to find books which have variations in the cover colors and will often keep examples of these different variations.