Sunday, June 02, 2013

John — The new collectible book

Well, Marcus Mebes seems to be moving into creating collector's items with his small runs of little collectible books that he's hand bound reprinting an Oz or Oz-related story. These little books are rather handsome and I'm sure that in the coming years that they will become valuable collector's pieces.

His latest offering, John, is a recently-discovered L. Frank Baum short story that recently appeared in The Baum Bugle. It follows a few days in the life of farmhand John as he gets ready to start his own farm, when he has to put his plans on hold as someone comes on the scene, seemingly about to swindle his employers.

There are only ten copies of this edition. Marcus, with permission, used the art artist John Mundt provided for the printing in The Baum Bugle. The newspaper's original illustration was unusable, unfortunately. (I have seen a scan of it myself. It is entirely too dark.) Mundt redrew the illustration in plain line art which reproduces much better.

Right now, Marcus has one copy of John left, but future reprints are planned: the original illustrations of L. Frank Baum's The Tramp and the Baby will be reunited with the text at last, as well as future Mundt-illustrated Baum tales: They Played a New Hamlet, The Extravagance of Dan, The Suicide of Kiaros, and  The Loveridge Burglary.

If you're interested in getting the last copy of John or are interested in future titles (he may consider making more copies if people are willing to buy them), e-mail him at

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