We just got copies of Joan Aiken’s The Serial Garden: The Complete Armitage Family Stories—which should have been called The Complete Treasury of Armitage Family Stories because it’s so darn pretty! Each story has a title page illustration by Andi Watson—here’s one, with 24 stories plus a few extras there have to be, um, 20+ in the book.
What else is in the book? A mistake in the author bio that John Clute spotted. very enjoyable and fascinating introductions by Garth Nix and Joan’s daughter, Lizza. The Prelude to the series that Joan wrote. An afternoon up a tree* reading. Four new stories that are published here for the first time. The Big Mouth House name in glittery gold on the spine and the web site inside (still to do in the 2 weeks before the pub date of Oct. 28).
Pre-orders will be shipping this week and the book will be it in stores in a couple of weeks. This is a book we designed to be something we’d love to receive as kids—so if you know a smart kid who needs a good book, you know what to do.
The first review comes from Kirkus:
The Armitages’ wacky magic (usually a Monday occurrence) and that of their fantastical town, a place filled with witches and magical beings, rises from the pages when matters go slightly awry, in the manner of Edward Eager and E. Nesbit.
If Michael is in on Friday (he was in Denver at a beer fest, so who knows if we will get him back!) we’ll ask him to take some of those great book pics he takes and post them. In the meantime, here’s the unboxing and a floored reader modelling our latest non-t-shirt:
* In the attic, on the couch, in the library, on the bus, you know how it goes, yes?