Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Penny Parker, Connie Blair, and Kay Tracey Questions

I periodically receive questions about series books. Here I will give my answers to some of those questions.

One collector was trying to find the Penny Parker titles in thick books with good quality paper. She wanted to know how many of the books were printed in that format. This is my answer.
I have #10 Ghost Beyond the Gate in a thick book with good quality paper. The binding is yellow.

Some thin books have good quality paper. I have #9 Saboteurs on the River in a thin blue book with good quality paper. #9 would also have to exist in a thick book even though I don’t have one.

I have #11 Hoofbeats on the Turnpike and #12 Voice from the Cave in thin red books with good quality paper. Both jackets list to Voice from the Cave.

I notice that the titles on the jacket spines for #11 and 12 are sized to fit on thin books, so it looks like #10 is the last book that is thick.

So up through #10 exist in thick books with good paper and up to #12 in thin books with good paper, although the good paper books would be very hard to find. I am pretty sure that #13-17 only exist with pulp paper.
Another collector wanted to make sure that some Connie Blair picture cover editions have the original text. Additionally, she wanted to know which Kay Tracey books have the original text. I answered as follows.
I have never heard of any revisions to the Connie Blair books, so I’m pretty confident that the picture cover books have the identical text as the older printings. Additionally, there are Tempo paperback versions of all 12 titles from the 1960s. While those books were re-typeset for the softcover version, I believe that they also contain the original texts with no changes.

15 Kay Tracey titles were reprinted by Books Inc. and Garden City during the 1950s and 1960s. Red Scarf, Green Cameo, and Strange Echo were significantly revised. The remaining 12 books are either identical or nearly identical to the original versions with just a few scattered changes perhaps at just the beginning or end of each book. The revisions are insignificant for those titles.

Three Kay Tracey books, Swaying Curtains, Shadow on the Door, and Forbidden Tower, are only available in the original Cupples and Leon yellow books.


Judy said...

Since you mention Connie Blair here, I couldn't help noticing the author of the Connie Blair series' predilection for gray eyes. Connie met at least three gray-eyed people in the first two books - quite a feat since gray eyes are rare! Just something I noticed - I guess that's the fun of being an author, you get to write whatever you want! I've just been re-reading my childhood collection and I like the Blair books - very well-written as these things go. Certainly she's more likable than Nancy Drew - so is Judy Bolton for that matter! How fun to have found your blog!

Unknown said...

Recently, I revisited the Connie Blair series. I had read many of them in the past and enjoyed them. I read the books in order this time and truly enjoyed revisiting Connie's world.

I, too, think The Mystery of the Ruby Queens is the best book in the series. The restoration of the old house, Connie's artwork, and the search for the missing ruby queens is intriguing reading. It's one of the best books in series fiction. It would have been great to read more books written by this author who wrote the "Betsy Allen" hat for Betty Cavanna for this one book.