Friday, August 7, 2009

Little Golden Book - Alice in Wonderland Meets the White Rabbit

Thought I'd do another series, the Alice in Wonderland Meets the White Rabbit Little Golden Book series. This book has many, many editions worldwide.

This book is by far the most common of all the Alice books, primarily because it was in print for so many years. I have one copy that is a 22nd printing. The other two Alice titles received only a single printing.

As some of you may know, first editions of Little Golden Books are sometimes called 'A' editions. That is because the way to tell which printing you have on the early LGBs is to look for the single letter printed on the last page in the bottom right hand corner near or sometimes under the spine. But a quicker way to tell at a glance if your Alice is a first printing is to look at the book on edge: the pages are tinted red!

Other things to look for when looking for a first:
  • first editions have block lettering on the cover for A Little Golden Book, later editions have script lettering
  • first editions never have a UPC code, those didn't come into use until the 1970s
  • the last title listed on the back cover of the first edition is D23 Alice and the Mad Hatter
  • the stock number of the first edition is D19, later editions the stock number changed several times, including 103-1, 103-41, and 105-50
  • first editions have no price on the cover
  • first editions have no stock number on the cover
By far the most fascinating thing about the White Rabbit Little Golden Book, is the inclusion of the Jabberwock.

The Jabberwock is a character that was originally scheduled to appear in the film, and seemingly removed fairly late in the game. There is this page, and there was to be a Little Golden Record as well. Stan Freberg was originally slated to provide the voice of the Jabberwock.


Vintage Disneyland Tickets said...

Great post, lovely little book. Never knew about the "Jabberwock" I wonder why they cut him out? Was he part of the original Alice story & is he in the Black & White version?

Matt said...

The Jabberwock is taken from a poem Lewis Carroll wrote called 'Jabberwocky' which makes an appearnce in Through the Looking Glass, where Humpty Dumpty defines some of the words for Alice. The Jabberwock creature never really makes an appearance though. But, oddly enough, there is a Jabberwock sequence on the Alice DVD during the Fred Waring show segment, during the 'Twas Brillig' musical number.

Other appearance of the Jabberwock creature exist in the Alice world, but I don't think the Paramount film is included in that list.

Carolyn McConaughey said...

Very interesting about this book; so what would one be really worth is it had all the items listed to show that it is an actual first edition?

Matt said...

Sadly, not very much. Even though there are so many printings, there are still a ton of the A edition. A perfect copy will bring at most $25-40. Copies with any kind of damage are essentially worthless - except of course to read :-)

Ned said...

As you say, the Jabberwock was probably the most striking thing about this edition. I had it in a French edition with a read-along cassette edition when I was 5, and found the Jabberwock quite scary on account of his flaming red eyes. This effect was compounded by the recording, where the narrator relates: "Elle rencontra un chat de Chester, qui disparaissait et reaparaissait instantanement. Et une etrange creature - Jabberwock, dont les yeux luaient come des flammes dans la nuit." (followed by an eerie chime melody). In translation: "She met a Chester (sic) Cat who disappeared and reappeared instantly. And a strange creature - Jabberwock, whose eyes shone like flames in the night. Now it looks funny, but I was spooked by the picture, but also fascinated. I ended up imagining Jabberwocks everywhere. Red lights such as those on top of tall buildings turned into Jabberwocks in my mind. Most were dangerous monsters to beware of, but I think my father helped develop a story whereby some of them were good Jabberwocks who guarded the city in the night. When I saw the Disney movie about a year after getting the book, I was disappointed that there was no Jabberwock in it.

Cool Stuff At Amazon