THE NIGHTBIRD


First Published 1955 by Collins

illustrated by Geoffrey Whittam

First edition wrapper. Click to enlarge (File Size=35KB)
First edition dustwrapper
courtesy of Sue Curnow

The fisherfolk of Westling are suffering from poor catches. They blame the French vessels 'poaching' their fish.
Tamzin and friends find a way to discourage the French, with remarkable results.

A realistic and enthralling return to the small fishing village on the south coast of England. Full of humour and beautifully observed characters.

First edition: 130x190mm; dark blue boards with silver lettering on spine; map endpapers; 255pp; title page vignette and 16 line illustrations.
Dustwrapper: full colour picture by Whittam of the ghostly fishing vessel being watched from on board by two characters; spine gives similar view. Rear advertises 'Other Romney Marsh Stories..' and lists No Entry, Storm Ahead, Cargo of Horses and The Midnight Horse; rear flap lists four Farm stories, front flap gives blurb of book; cp '8s 6d net'

Reprinted:

Collins 1956: 'Six Shilling' Edition: Red boards, black lettering on spine with star retained between author and title; 'Collins' at base of spine.
Rear of title page has:

First printed 1955
Reprinted 1956

There are no map endpapers in my copy; the book has 255 numbered pages.
The dustwrapper artwork is as the first edition, and the rear flap lists Punchbowl Harvest, The Wanderer, Punchbowl Midnight and Black Hunting Whip with quotes from various sources. The front flap bears, at bottom right, the cover price: '6s. net'

reprint wrapper.
1956 reprint dustwrapper


Other Editions:
Young Elizabethan serial. Click to enlarge
The serialisation in
Collins Young Elizabethan
magazine
1955 serialised in the Young Elizabethan magazine
The first episode appeared in the issue for April 1955 and the serial ran for eight months; the final episode being published the November 1955 issue.

Each episodes is illustrated by the Geoffrey Whittam illustrations as in the book, some used quite large.

1958 Collins Crown Library edition Listed by ME but not seen

Armada edition. click to enlarge
Armada 1963 cover
Armada 1963:
Paperback edition; text abridged; Armada number C55; 189pp; frontispiece and 12 of the original llustrations; cover credited to Peter Archer; cover price 2/6.

Girls Gone By 2006:
Published September 2006.
A new paperback impression; full text and Geoffrey Whittam illustrations of the original book; 19x13mm (7.5x5 inches); 308pp.
As with their other editions the publishers have used full colour for the cover, reproducing the front of the first edition wrapper; the rear is a plain grey-green showing the first edition spine on the left of a story summary from the front flap of the dustwrapper.
Click to enlarge
Girls Gone By edition
2006
rear cover
Once again a completely new piece by Shelley, Monica's daughter, introduces the book.
This is followed by Joy Wotton's introduction to the author, the places and the books of Monica Edwards, illustrated with photographs both of Farm and Rye Harbour.
A mention of the Society and my short piece on the publication history of the book follow, before the story really begins.
For many it will be the first reading of the entire story as copies of the full text have been very difficult to obtain, until now.
Click to enlarge
Front cover
by Geoffrey Whittam
GGB 2006
It is a lovely book and will be a delight for those many who have been unable to get hold of a copy of this title.
ISBN 1-847450008; published at £10.99 including postage from the publishers.
(This edition now out of print.)

Foreign Editions:

19-- Braille edition New Zealand Listed by ME but not seen


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Illustrations copyright the respective Publishers
Text copyright John Allsup
Created September 2000
Last updated 3rn June 2015