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3 February 2020


We were very sad to hear of the death of Paul Farnes. As one of our last Battle of Britain pilots, Paul along with Geoffrey Wellum and Thomas Neil signed our Spitfire Edition of the RAF Commemorative Anthology. I was hugely privileged to meet all three of these gentlemen and it is a sobering thought to realise that none of them are with us now. It truly is the end of an era.

25 November 2019


Following our excellent review in the IMCOS journal the Cartographic History of the Channel Islands was purchased by both Cambridge University Library and The Bibliotéque Nationale.

25 November 2019


The Cartographic History of the Channel Islands was highly commended in the Limited Edition and Fine Binding category at the British Book Design and Production Awards. We are previous winners with The King's Survey of the Channel Islands and last year the RAF Commemorative Anthology won Best British Book, but it was not to be. 101 books were shortlisted for the 19 awards and the competition was stellar this year!

8 March 2019


We are delighted that Balch and Balch are opeining a private press bookshop in Haye-on-Wye on March 30th. You will find exhibitions, demonstrations and events showcasing how the books are made and the stories behind them and it is going to be fabulous. We are doubly delighted as our books will be there, which beats being in the tent we were in last year!

BALCH & BALCH private press bookshop is part of The Story of Books and is owned by Emma and Oliver Balch. Find it at 20 cCastle Street, Haye-on-wye, HR3 5DF

check out https://thestoryofbooks.com/


23 November 2018


The RAF Centenary Anthology has won the BEST BRITISH BOOK award at the British Book Design and Production Awards 2018.

Thank you to the BPIF for a fabulous evening, to everybody at Ludlow Bookbinders, Pureprint and the Air Historical Branch and the RAF Museum Hendon for all thier hard work and support, and, of course, to all our subscribers without whose support there would be no book.

Please excuse the photograph our rather lovely award has proven very difficult to capture!

29 March 2018


After two and a half years of extremely hard work by a great many people the RAF Centenary Anthology has started shipping to our subscribers. All subscribers will have received their books by the end of April and we are now gearing up for our public launch of the book.

Opposite is Paul Kidson of Ludlow Bookbinders whose team has done a magnificent job on the books, which is why he is looking so happy.

21 March 2018


I recently been travelling the country meeting the signatories for the RAF Centenary Anthology special signed editions. Today I had the very great privilege of meeting Martin Withers of Operation Black Buck fame, who is signing the Vulcan Edition.

 You can find out who the other signatories are on the relevant pages on this website. Just go to Our Books and click on the RAF Centenary Anthology.

2 February 2018


Extraordinary Edition’s RAF Centenary Anthology is nearing completion. Teams at both RAF Hendon and the Air Historical Branch have sifted through over 10,000 documents in the process of selecting the material that will bring to life the story of the whole 100 years of RAF history.

All the chosen documents, maps, photographs and ephemera have now been scanned and each of the 700 or so pages have been laid out by the designer, the final captions and corrections are being made at the moment.

The finished book will be printed at the end of February,  and as each subscriber is listed in the front of the book we have to close the subscriber lists on February 28th.

Once the book is published it will retail at the full price of £975 for the Centenary Edition and £1995 for the Signed Editions.

 Subscribers, if they hurry can still get the subscriber discounts with the Centenary Edition costing £750 and the Signed Editions £1450 a saving of over 25%

 The RAF Centenary Anthology will be published in a limited edition of 1250 copies quarter bound, by hand, in leather, in addition there will be 250 of the Signed Editions, fully bound in leather of which nearly half are already sold. The Anthology designed to be the ultimate celebration and commemoration of the last 100 years and to last for 100’s of years to come.

TO SUBCRIBE email:  mm@extraordinaryeditions.com  Or call:  020-7267-4547



27 July 2017


Come and see us this summer at The Game Fair at Hatfield House this Friday, Saturday and Sunday

We are on stand B193 and you can find details of the fair here 

And next Thursday 3rd August until Sunday 6th at Countyfile Live

Where we are on stand D11 - Full details here

Maggie the show dog [pictured during set up] will be on hand.

25 January 2017


We are honoured to be working with Raf Museum Hendon and the RAF100 Group in order to publish the ultimate centenary anthology to celebrate and commemorate the 100th anniversary of the Royal Air Force.

A team of historians and archivists have been mining the archives at the museum and we are working closely with the Air Historical Branch in order to create an immersive and indepth history.

There is a wealth of material tucked away just waiting to see the light of day and we will be bringing you some of the highlights over the coming months.

2 September 2016

COME AND SEE US! Stationers Hall October 11th

Along with several fellow private press publishers we are hosting An Evening of Private Presses and Fine Binding at the Stationers Hall on the evening of October 11th from 6pm to 9pm.

There will be a very short speech, some lovey canape and some excellent wine courtesy of Rickety Bridge Winery, some demonstrations of craft binding and a lot of very lovely books.

Entrance is free but there are a limited number of places. If you would like to come please email me:  mm@extraordinaryeditions.com  as soon as you possibly can.

5 July 2016


We have just been sent the judges comments for our two awards and I'm afraid I couldn't resist sharing them.

Short run printing

A unique item of print that would not be out of place in a museum. High end print, finishing, binding and packing, a product that is a truly stunning piece of high end art.

Supreme award

An all encompassing showcase for print - a showstopper. A unique, one off in its own class. A rare and beautiful product.

1 July 2016


Waterloo 1815 – The Commemorative Anthology won both the Short Run Award and the Supreme Award at yesterday’s Print Design and Marketing Awards. Our congratulations go to Pureprint for winning in three of the four categories they were entered in and for printing us such a stunning multi-award winning book. Waterloo has also helped Pureprint scoop Book Printer of the Year and was Highly Commended in the Book of the Year Category at the British Book Design and Production Awards.

26 April 2016


Here is another of Jemma's experimental designs, currently this one is our favourite. You have to image in as the cover paper of a quarter leather bound royal folio, with a small amount of additional gold blocking. As soon as there is a mocked up cover we will be posting that too.

26 April 2016


Our sister company The Clear Vue Publishing Partnership are planning a cartographic history of the Channel Islands and we have asked Jemma Marbling to produce some experimental designs using old Admiralty charts for the paper. They are so lovely we thought they were worth sharing!

21 April 2016


Just packing everything up as we will be in Oxford this weekend at the PBFA Oxford Premiere Fair – Saturday Noon until 6pm and Sunday 10am until 4pm.

 Oxford Brookes Wheatley Campus, Wheatley, Oxford, OX33 1HX

 Full details here: HERE

 It is a huge fair with, I believe, 103 exhibitors, so there should be something for everybody.

 We will have some stunning books on display and are delighted to have William Peters’ - PER SANGUINEM NOSTRUM , one of only 37 copies getting its very first public outing in the UK.

 Lets be frank, its going to be cold and windy all weekend so what better way to spend it than in the company of rooms full of beautiful books

27 November 2015


We had an excellent night at the BBD&P Awards with the Waterloo Anthology being Highly Commended in both the Digitally Printed Books and Best British Book categories, both categories we have never featured in before!

There was a huge entry this year which was reflected in a collection of absolutely stunning designs right across the ceremony. My personal favourite was Skate Girls of Kabul a fabulous first book by Jessica Fulford-Dobson, she was Highly Commended in the Art and Arcitecture Monographs category.

A big thank you goes to Heena and her team for a really great night.

26 November 2015


We are off to the British Book Design and Production Awards this evening, The Waterloo Commemorative Anthology has three nominations so please keep your fingers firmly crossed for us!

20 October 2015


Congratulations to Pureprint on winning Book Printer of the Year at the PrintWeek Awards and a big thank you to them for including our Waterloo Commemorative Anthology in their entry. We are delighted to have helped them to win the award for the fourth year in a row!

A massive thank you also to the judge who had this to say about the Waterloo Anthology:

 “Waterloo is quite simply one of the best books I have ever seen, the printing and binding were exceptional – stunning.”

24 September 2015


We are beyond delighted that Pureprint have entered The Waterloo Commemorative Antholgy in the Print Week Awards and we have been shortlisted in two categories. printweekawards

The categories are Book Printer of the Year and Bespoke Digital Printer of the Year.

The anthology is now shortlisted for 5 awards in total, and we are on tenderhooks.

21 September 2015


We had an exceptionally busy four days at DSEI, seeing old friends and making new ones and this year as an added draw we were giving away a copy of the Victoria Cross Edition of the SAS War Diary.

The draw was overseen by Duncan Reid the Event Director and the Diary was won by Howard Wilding of Helyx [www.helyx.co.uk] our congratulations go to Howard and our thanks go to everybody else who came to see us and entered the draw.

20 August 2015


I am absolutely delighted to say that the Waterloo Commemorative Anthology has been shortlisted for three awards in the British Book Design and Production Awards shorlist for 2015.

We are one of three books competing for the Limited Edition and Fine Binding Award, which our sister company Clear Vue Publishing won in 2011 with the KIng's Survey of the Channel Islands.

The other two categories are Best Digital Printing and, amazingly, Best British Book, so pleased keep your fingers firmly crossed for us on November 26th!

You can see the full shortlist here.


6 July 2015


We are just back from the Chalke Valley History Festival (what a fabulous event - don't miss it next year) We made a new friend in MIchelle from Hand Bound Costumes. She makes the most beautiful things and specialises in historical accuracy - and comfort. So if you ever need a little bit of limited edition hand made costumery in your closet you now know where to go. handboundcostumes.co.uk


2 June 2015


The London International Antiquarian Book Fair was also an opportunity to make some new friends and we were completely knocked over by the work of Margaret Costa. Margaret is one of the few fore-edge painters working in this country.

Fore-edge painters clamp the book to fan out the edge of the pages and then paint on the resulting slope. Once the book is finished the completed painting is only revealed when the book is read and talented painters can create three images on a single book.

We would love someone to commission a fore-edge battle scene on our Waterloo Anthology and have prepared book blocks ready. Margaret can be contacted on: mjcosta@tesco.net - and you can see here work by clicking on the title of this page.


2 June 2015


We are just back from the London International Antiquarian Book Fair and were delighted to catch up with an old friend Paul Antonio. Calligrapher par excellence Paul is a master of his art and. Should you want an inscription in one of our books please let us know, or you can contact Paul direct at: www.paulantonioscribe.com and see examples of his work.


18 May 2015


Today sees the official launch of the Waterloo commemorative Anthology, exactly one month before the bicentenary. We hope that by the end of the week all of our subscriber copies will have left the bindery, leaving us plenty of time to deal with the rush. Come and see the books on stand L11 in the LIVE! section of the London International Antiquarian Book Fair.

Click here for more about the London International Antiquarian Book Fair

Email me at mm@extraordinaryeditions for a free e-ticket.

15 May 2015


We are absolutely delighted that the first exemplary copy is going on display in the Great Hall at the Royal Hospital Chelsea. The book will rest on one of the hospital's great treasures, the table on which the Duke himself was laid out before his funeral.The book will be on display from May 25th and our thanks go to the hospital for making it possible.

Please clck here to link to the Royal Hospital's website.

21 April 2015


Finally the very first copy of our exemplary has arrived in the office. The box, modelled on an officer's writing slope, has taken several prototypes to perfect, but we are now absolutely delighted with it. The book and the portfolio sit snugly inside, protected by the lining and secured by the lids. Both the portfolio and the book are fully bound in leather with raised bands and the cover design of the book is executed in embroidery with coloured and metallic threads. Underneath the portfolio are two additional maps, the Duke's own map, courtesy of the Royal Engineers and Du Craan's exquisite map of the field.

Click on the headline of this article to see a gallery of pictures

10 April 2015

WATERLOO - breaks cover at the Waterloo Association AGM

The very first copy of the Commemorative Edition arrived on my desk this afternoon, the culmination of seven years of planning and hard work and it looks fabulous. I have to wait until next week before the exemplary copy arrives as the gilders are off for Easter, but for now I am delighted that we will be able to show this copy to the Waterloo Association at their AGM on April 15th. It will also be on display at the London Book Fair from the 14th to the 16th on the Ludlow Bookbinders stand. 

Click on the headline of this article to see a gallery of pictures

9 March 2015


Richard at the bindery hand crafts all of our SAS War Diaries and when he is not doing that, well he lets rip a little. This absolutely beautiful rebinding of A Midsummers Nights Dream, illustrated by Arthur Rackham is a case in point. Rebound by hand in contrasting leather, with raised bands and gold tooling. It come in a perfect solander box with rounded spine and raised bands, within which Richard has cunningly kept the old front board and spine. Its a must for collectors and a steal on ebay.

2 March 2015


We have just completed the printing of the maps and tip-ins for the Waterloo Commemorative Anthology. The Siborne anaglyptographs were a challenge to say the least, but Steve and the team at Hampton Printing have done a fantastic job. Its not often you get to stand on the pass and watch craft skills of the highest order and it was a privilege to be there watching minute adjustments producing such stunning work, now onto the book proofs.

23 January 2015


Our Waterloo commemorative anthology is now well under way, The page designs are nearly completed, the first scatter proofs have arrived, the wooden writing slopes for the Exemplary Edition are ordered and the first of the embroidered leather panels have been completed. We are very much hoping to print in February and that we are still on track for the first copies to be ready in March.

27 August 2014

Come to York Book Fair 19th and 20th September 2014

You can see the full range of our books, including the latest Waterloo anthology dummy copies and the bespoke writing slope for the exemplary at the York National Book Fair on the 19th and 20th of September. Come and see us [and Britain's largest Antiquarian Book Fair] at York Racecourse. The postcode is YO23 1EX for those of you relying on satnav.

18 August 2014

Our Waterloo box arrives

The first prototype of the box for the Exemplary copies of our Waterloo anthology has arrived. It has been beautifully crafted in sapele wood and then finished in our bindery. There are more pictures in the gallery at waterloobook.co.uk  Now we have the box we can concentrate on the finish and the linings, so please keep in mind that it will change as we improve on the final details.

Please click on the title of this piece to see additional images.

14 August 2014

Limited edition chocolate!

I know that strictly speaking you can't really have limited edition chocolate. That said on a recent trip to Guernsey to discuss the Folio Society's edition of The Toilers of the Sea [ see previous posts ] I came across chocolatier Ben Le Prevost, click on his name to discover his extraordinary [ and we don't use that word lightly ] range of fantastic chocolates. My personal favourites include peanut butter on toast and basil. Invest in a box, you won't be disappointed, they look and taste fabulous.

2 July 2014

endpapers - a celebration

if you need to keep up with the world of contemporary art, then you will be familiar with Hyperallergic. if not click here to read thier lovely piece on book endpapers. Shown on the right is a rather lovely dandelion design, upside down on their blog as one eagle eyed commentator noticed [ otherwise I wouldn't have known ]

27 June 2014


Just 200 copies of this fabulous edition of the classic RING OF BRIGHT WATER are being released, get in the queue by clicking here. The book will help to support the Eilean Ban Trust who look after the island, home of Gavin Maxwell and the otters.

3 June 2014


On May the 8th I was delighted to help launch the Folio Society's limited edition of Victor Hugo's Toilers of the Sea.

Having lobbied and cajoled for over a year in order to persuade Folio to publish the first ever edition illustrated with Hugo's own illustrations, I was especially thrilled that we were able to launch the book in Hauteville House in Guernsey. I should thank the Guernsey Evening press for all their support and for this picture of the book, lying on the desk where Hugo wrote it!

I am also thrilled that Folio have already sold over 900 of the 1250 copies available, if you want one click this link, don't delay it will sell out soon.

29 April 2014

The Lytlewode Press

Television Comes To Ballarat

Written by Robert C. Littlewood Illustrated by Hilary Paynter

A personal memoir by Robert C. Littlewood with wood engravings by Hilary Paynter. Stoke-on-Trent : The Lytlewode Press, 2010. Quarto, gilt-decorated cloth in matching slipcase, 13pp., illustrated with three original wood engravings by Hilary Paynter (one signed). Limited to 275 copies signed by the author and artist. 

An autobiographical account of Littlewood’s childhood spent in Ballarat in the 1950s, and the wonderment of the introduction of television to Australia. Charmingly illustrated with original prints by England’s most highly regarded contemporary wood engraver. Limited to 275 copies printed on Zerkall mold-made paper and bound in Shropshire, England. Signed and numbered by the author. Printed by Paul Kershaw in Ripon, North Yorkshire. 

Octavo, Case bound within matching slipcase.  See more at www.lytlewode.com

28 April 2014


An invitation to vist the Bathhurst Estate at Cirencester revealed a large folio of Waterloo maps, evidently sent to Lord Bathurst. The one illustrated is highly unusual having the centre flap stuck on in order to illustrate two different periods during the battle. I would be interested to hear if anybody has seen this particular map before.

26 March 2014


Bazaar is a book large in format, noisy in colour, and crowded with textures and patterns. It contains a collection of observations on the experiences of visiting these chaotic, vibrant and expressive places, together with a series of eight original prints.

 The wanderings are set out in sections devoted to different subjects, among which are food and flowers, spices, personalities and a section on temple memorabilia. There are crabs with electric blue legs in Alexandria, spare teeth in Marrakesh, marigolds in Mysore, woven beds in Jaipur and cheroot-smoking ladies somewhere near Pindaya in Burma.

 The words and images are taken from writings and drawings and photographs made in the various locations. The text is designed and laid out simply and spaciously. It is printed letterpress in Optima – Roman and Italic – with titles in 36 point Roman Open, on 200gsm. Zerkall paper using colours that integrate with the prints.

 You can see more of Susan's stunning works at susanallix.com

26 March 2014


Susan incorporates intaglio processes such as etching, aquatint, drypoint, carborundum, and surface roll with hand colouring. Of the eight images, one is a lino cut and the large letters of the title page have also been cut in lino. The prints are complicated, using multiple colours and separate plates, often inked ‘a la poupee’ with further hand work in watercolour and acrylic. The paper for the prints is J. Green  310gsm. mould made, bought from the mill before it closed many years ago.

Each of the eight openings is enclosed in a sheet of hand made paper that extends beyond the edges of the printed pages, acting as a frame to accentuate the colour and atmosphere of the spread. Most of these papers have been made especially for this book in the paper-making town of Sanganer in India. Their brightness, pattern and shine help to create, in their close proximity to one another, something of the confusion and exhilaration felt in a crowded bazaar.

 The whole is enclosed in a binding of silk, leather and painted paper over boards, with endpapers and doublures of hand made paper. The spine is leather with the silks and paper arranged on the boards, and the ‘floating’ headband is made to accommodate the variations in pages. The title is lettered in wide spacing in coloured foils on the front board. Each book is different in colour and design, and is enclosed in a dark blue cloth box. The book measures 55x42 cms. (58x44 cms. boxed), has 86 pages and is in a limited edition of 14 copies.


20 March 2014


Exhibitors on the FPBA stand at the London International Antiquarian Book Fair - No: 3

Publishers of books with a strong interest in illustration and Lewis Carroll. We will be exhibiting Illustrating Alice, exploring over 500 sets of illustrations for these two books, a new Through the Looking-Glass with illustrations by John Vernon Lord and the last few copies of Alice’s Adventures under Ground, typeset with Lewis Carroll’s original drawings, enlarged and coloured by Ian Beck.

see more of their work by clicking here:

14 March 2014


Exhibitors on the FPBA stand at the London International Antiquarian Book Fair - No: 2

Books Illustrated have over the years specialised in original illustrations, championing some of our most loved and most famous illustrators. Now they are breaking out into publishing some stunningly illustrated books.

Shown here is Purr & Feather a collection of much loved poems about cats and owls, brought to life by Angel Dominguez, the award-winning illustrator who so richly illustrated ‘Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland’ in 1996.

See more at www.booksillustrated.com

14 March 2014


Exhibitors on the FPBA stand at the London International Antiquarian Book Fair - No: 1

At The Old School Press, Martyn & Angela Ould print and publish new texts in limited editions with specially commissioned illustrations. We use traditional letterpress printing techniques – metal type and fine papers – and our books are hand-bound to our designs.

click here to go to their website www.theoldschoolpress.com


27 February 2014


We are thrilled to announce that there will be a Fine Press Book Association stand at this years London Antiquarian Book Fair at Olympia from the 22nd to the 24th of May.

The following presses will be represented: Old School Press, Inky Parrot Press and Artists' Choice Editions, Hand & Eye Letterpress, Caliban Press, Gateway Publishing, Sherwin Beach Press, Susan Allix, Books Illustrated Limited, The Folio Society, Lytewode Press, Queen Anne Press and Extraordinary Editions. Please see our links page to find details of all the presses.

I hope to profile each press over the weeks leading up to the show, so watch this space. This is a rare opportunity to see the work of a number of the country's leading fine, art and letterpresses all together in a single London location - not to be missed.


10 February 2014

buy the folio societys limited edition of toilers of the sea

The Folio Society now have their web page live, click here if you wish to buy a copy of the limit edition. Its already proving popular so please don't delay.

For more lovely Channel Island books click here

22 January 2014


I am delighted to be able to announce, that such has been the response to our campaign to persuade the Folio Society to publish a definitive edition of The Toilers of the Sea, that they have decided to go ahead and the book is now in production.

The Toilers of the Sea has never been published with Victor Hugo’s original artwork. The 36 images he bound into his original manuscript are absolutely stunning and help bring a whole new perspective to this the greatest of all Channel Island novels.

6 January 2014


Michael Kuch created the etchings and paste-paper images, printed the copperplates and designed the book with oversight from Liv Rockefeller and Ken Shure. Dale Guild Type Foundry cast the 18 point Parsons [Will Ransom’s only metal typeface] Russel Maret created the fleuron and title lettering based upon a Ransom design. The letterpress was undertaken on a Vandercook Universal IV by Art Larson.


6 January 2014


The popularity of Margaret Wise Brown’s classic, Good Night Moon" endures in America today, over 60 years after her death, such that you can chart birth rates by the sales of that book. She composed The Little River in 1950 and it has never been published before. Margaret gave the manuscript to her fiance, the father of publisher Liv Rockefeller. The book comes complete with a facsimile of the original manuscript and essays by Michael Kuch describing his printing techniques and Liv Rockefeller who describes the role Margaret played in her life as well as the alternative endings to the manuscript. There are only 60 copies of this absolutely beautiful book and there aren’t many left.

6 January 2014


The Little River by Margaret Wise Brown, illustrated by Michael Kuch of the Double Elephant Press and published by Two Ponds Press was the very worthy winner of two awards a the Oxford Fine Press Fair, unsurprisingly receiving both the Judges Choice Award and the Parrot Prize award for the best illustrated book of the last two years.

26 November 2013


The Exemplary Edition of the SAS War Diary has been won by a Telegraph reader from Northern Ireland. We are especially delighted that the winner comes from Paddy Mayne's hometown of Newtownards and that in a quirk of fate our winner comes from a community that has been raising funds for a copy of the Diary to be placed in their local library. So this very special copy of the Diary has gone to a home where its significance is understood and where it will be hugely appreciated.

5 November 2013


The Illuminated Fightbook was highly commended at the  British Book Design and Production Awards 2013 last night, as were our friends at the Folio Society so we feel in good company. Congratulations to the V&A who pipped us to the post with their David Bowie book.

5 November 2013


The final tests of the embroidered binding for the exemplary copies of the Waterloo book have now been completed and the results are spectacular. We had the binding on display at the Oxford Fine Press Book Fair and the design went down a storm. Our congratulations and thanks go to Phil at Ludlow Bookbinders for a fantastic piece of craftsmanship.

30 October 2013


We launched our campaign to persuade the Folio Society to create a limited edition of Victor Hugo's Toilers of the Sea in Guernsey last weekend. There was a piece on the Channel TV evening news, which you can see by clicking here. There was also a fabulous centre page spread in the Guernsey Evening Press which has created a great deal of interest and which featured several images by Hugo, including his stunning image of Les Douvres which you can see beside this piece.

30 October 2013


The Telgraph of Saturday 9th and Sunday 10th of November will feature two, 8-page pullouts featuring material from the SAS War Diary. One lucky reader will also be able to win an exemplary edition of the SAS War Dairy worth £15,000. You can see the promotion on the Telegraph website,

3 October 2013


We are delighted to announce that the Exemplary Edition of 1.33 has been shortlisted in the Limited Edition and Fine binding category of the British Book Design and Production Awards 2013

2 October 2013

Guernsey Lilly at Kew

We are delighted that the library at the Royal Botanic Gardens at Kew have purchased a copy of the Guernsey lilly for their library. Bibliophiles may wish to know that they already hold an original copy of Douglas' work.

16 September 2013


We raffled a copy of the Services Edition of the SAS War Diary at DSEI 2013 and the response was overwhelming. The draw took place at Noon on Friday 13th and our thanks go to Tim Porter the managing director of Clarion Events, the organisers behind DSEI, for picking the winner. Our very worthy winner wishes to remain anonymous.

4 September 2013



I know that this is a book blog but I cannot resist bringing The Space Pirates of Rocquaine to your attention. Released this summer in a limited edition of just 500 copies this is an album to make your heart sing. If you could bottle this infectious energy and enthusiasm you would make your fortune, as it is sit back and rock along with the pirates.


1 September 2013

Illuminated Fightbook Exemplary Edition

The final touches are just being out on the Exemplary Edition of the Fightbook. Each copy is bound in 300 year old oak boards with a veiny vellum spine, they look absolutely stunning. Each copy is then presented in a bespoke leather pouch which also has a pocket for the companion volume. There are only 26 lettered copies and several have already been sold. We will hold the £1500 price until September after which it will rise to £1750.

3 July 2013


The Exemplary Edition of the SAS War Diary will have its first public unveiling at DSEI, the worlds largest arms and security fair, at EXCEL in London's docklands from the 10th to the 13thSeptember.

Each Exemplary will be bound in a fine hide, with gilt edges and contain over 300 real photographs stuck into the book to best replicate the original scrapbook, in addition each copy will be signed by 22 wartime members of the Regiment and the LRDG. The books will be presented in an Oxford blue leather covered box, lined with Cambridge blue silk. A six inch solid silver winged dagger is embedded in the top of each box. The Exemplary will be strictly limited to 22 lettered copies.

Please email mm@extraordinaryeditions.com. For further information.

3 July 2013

Toilers of the Sea

Toilers of the Sea

I have recently been chatting with Joe Whitlock-Blundell at the Folio Society. I was explaining that I had always wanted to see a full English translation complete with the 36 illustrations that VIctor Hugo bound into the original manuscript. I have long maintained that these images were as important to the novel as the text and that the two make a single integrated artwork. Joe is hugely enthusiastic and tells me that if I can find enough people to agree that Folio will produce one one their wonderful limited editions, complete with all the images. So I am going to start a Channel Island wide campaign to see if we can't get a complete Toilers published. Email me for more details: info@clearvuepublishing.com 

25 June 2013


Lots of old friends and lots of new ones at the London Antiquarian Book Fair. Derek Hood was taking his turn on the Designer Bookbinders stand and Shepherds were showing off their indestructible Explorer notebooks from their Wiltshire Barn Project, which helps with the rehabilitation of services personnel. The Explorer is ideal for Christmas, but hurry as they are selling like hot cakes and rightly so..


New friends included Judith Wiesner, expert conservator. Judith gave us a crash course in paper conservation, showing us why you really shouldn't try this at home. If you have valuable paper that needs restoring look no further. You can check out the before and after images on her website if you need convincing.


We were also delighted to meet Enitharmon, one of the few British publishers commissioning collaborations between distinguished artists and writers. We brought a copy of Side by Side by Gilbert and George and lusted after the sumptuous My Yorkshire by David Hockney, in a deluxe limited edition. Not only have they have been publishing stunning books since 1997 they are based around the corner from us, once we’ve been round for coffee, we’ll tell you what they are up to next!


Last and not least Glyn and the team from the St Bride Foundation, keeping the art of printing alive, with classes and a world class typographic library. When you are in London you need to go and see them - really you do.

4 June 2013


Back from the Book Expo in an absolutely sweltering New York, but hey, we go so you don't have too. Sadly there was no sign of either Scriptorium or Moliero, both of whom had been listed as attending from an out of date list. However we did catch up with the charming Giorgio Armaroli from Scripta Maneant, who was showing their facsimile of the British Library's Pslater of Robert de L'Isle.

Containing two of the masterpieces of the fourteenth century, the 39 pages of the Psalter are lavishly embellished with gold and of the 450 copies being made, 40 will be completed in 22 carat gold tooling. The results are well worth the wait and the book was getting a lot of attention at the show. Our photos weren’t taken under the best of conditions, but they do show something of the impact the book has. The facsimile comes complete with a companion volume and is packaged in a Perspex box for more information visit Scripta Maneant.

23 May 2013


We are off to New York for Book Expo America and hugely looking forward to it. Among the specialist publishers exhibiting are , Heritage Edizioni and Scripta Maneant, whose De Lisle Psalter which is wholly printed on vellum looks absolutely stunning. We are also keen to see works by Scriptorium for the first time as they have just produced their first work on vellum. Hopefully when we get back we can fill you in on the details.

10 May 2013


The Illuminated Fightbook has now shipped to all subscribers. Thanks to the bravery of the Royal Armouries in allowing the original manuscript to travel to our printers Senecio, the reproduction is absolutely spot on. One RA curator declared himself "gobsmacked" when he first saw the facsimile. The picture shows some of the fine detail and the bleed through of the image on the reverse, just part of the mass of detail we have been able to capture. Look out for our launch at Live at the Antiquarian Bookfair.

The Illuminated Fightbook will also be on display at the London Antiquarian Book Fair on the 13th, 14th, and 15th June.


9 May 2013


The list of presses and booksellers attending this year's Oxford fine press book fair in November has just been released and it is looking to be the biggest and best fair yet. We will bring you a list of the delegates and as many links to their websites as we can manage. Apologies if you are left out - just get in touch and we will put you on the blog. Of the presses, publishers and booksellers there are two Canadian , eleven from the USA, three from France, two from Ireland, two from Germany, two from Spain and one each from Australia, Russia and the Netherlands.

18 April 2013

from the London Book Fair

We saw less limited editions and facsimiles at the fair this year, but were very happy to catch up with the glamorous Lucia and Francesca from Franco Cosimo Panini. You may remember Panini as producers of stickers and books to put them in for children, however Lucia's father was an enthusiastic antiquarian book collector and that led him into publishing renaissance masterpieces. Click on their name to see the fabulous books on their website.

Also at the show was Armin Sinnwell of Faksimile Verlag. Armin always has something stunning on display and this year he excelled himself with the Codex Aureus, which he is proudly showing off in the photo. It is a breathtaking work and limited to just 333 copies.

12 April 2013


Extraordinary Editions are delighted to have the first copies of 1.33 the Illuminated Fightbook on display at the London Book Fair next week on the 15th, 16th and 17th. The first copies will then be sent to subscribers before the end of April.

The Illuminated Fightbook will also be on display at the London Antiquarian Book Fair on the 13th, 14th, and 15th June.

12 April 2013

Guernsey Lilly at St Pierre Park

The Guernsey Lilly will be on display at the bank holiday Antiques Fair at the St Pierre Park Hotel, St Peter Port on May 6th from 10am to 5pm. We will have some of our other books on display as well and look forward to seeing you there.

12 April 2013

Here come the fairs...

Its that time of year again as the London Book Fair starts on Monday. We will be there - stand R801 - do please come and see us. We'll also be having a good look around for limited editions and facsimiles, although it looks as if there are less specialist publishers than last year.

This year we are also visiting Book Expo America, in New York in late May where we will be checking out what's happening stateside.

Then we'll be back for the London Antiquarian Book Fair on June 13th , 14th and 15th. In a new innovation LIVE at the Antiquarian Book Fair will be featuring binding, calligraphy, and letter press work. Look out for our seminar, Everything You Wanted to Know About Books But Were Afraid to Ask.

June will see us at the International Medieval Conference in Leeds and then we'll be at the Oxford Fine Press Fair in Oxford in November. It only happens every other year and is undoubtedly the finest fine press and art book show in Europe, not to be missed.

In between we'll be bringing you sneak previews of up and coming editions and looking at some of the finest binding in the country. If you love books - keep an eye on us.


12 April 2013


Extraordinary Editions are delighted to have the first copies of 1.33 the Illuminated Fightbook on display at the London Book Fair next week on the 15th, 16th and 17th. The first copies will then be sent to subscribers before the end of April.

The Illuminated Fightbook will also be on display at the London Antiquarian Book Fair on the 13th, 14th, and 15th June.

26 February 2013


After several months of detailed proofing the Royal Armouries let us have the original 1.33 manuscript at Senecio the fine art printers. Master printer Adrian Lack was then able to make a proof copy describer as "jaw dropping" by one Armouries staff member. The proofs were passed and the full print run will take place next week.

7 February 2013

I never met a book...


I no sooner see a book: I need it!
   [Even though I'll never read it],
     Books in any binding, any font;
Though it’s always my ambition      
   To acquire a first edition —            
     I never met a book I didn’t want! 

Of my rivals in the chase: (God bless ’em!)    
  How I long to dispossess ’em —           
    Dreams of bookish burgling haunt my sleep,
Though the smell of vellum lingers 
  On a dreaming felon’s fingers —
    I never dreamt a book I didn’t keep! 

‘Would you care to borrow this?’: I have it!    
  (Swear me out an affidavit!)         
     Flattery finds fools who never learn;
Those who loan ’em — losers weepers!    
  I disown ’em!  Finders keepers! —          
     I never took a book I could return!

By kind permission of Felix Dennis

4 February 2013



Thanks to the fundraising efforts of teacher Peter Forbes and the pupils of Movilla High School a copy of the SAS War Diary was presented to the public library in Newtownards, Paddy Mayne's home town, on what would have been his 98th birthday.

Currently at Movilla there are pupils who are great grandchildren of one of Mayne's men, Billy Hull, and one of those pupils helped with the fundraising.

[picture Courtesy of the Newtownards Chronicle]


23 November 2012



The SAS War Diary 1941-1945 received a " Highly Commended"  in the Limited Edition and Fine Binding category at the British Book Awards. We are delighted that all the hard work put in by the team at Ludlow Bookbinders, our designers MCML and all the members and staff of the SAS Regimental Association, was recognised by the judges.


2 November 2012


We are delighted to announce that after consultation with the Royal Armouries the Facsimile Edition of I.33 is going into production. We are calling in our sponsorship pledges and accordingly the sponsorship list and with it the opportunity to purchase the book for £600 will close on December 1st 2012.

17 October 2012


Extraordinary Editions are delighted to announce that the SAS War Diary 1941-1945 has been shortlisted in the Limited Edition and Fine Binding category of the British Book Awards. The awards ceremony is in November and we are keeping our fingers firmly crossed until then.

21 September 2012

GUERNSEY LILLY on display for the Nerine Festival

The first bound copies of the Douglas facsimile and Helen Brock's companion volume will be on display at the Priaulx Library, Candie Gardens, St Peter Port during the Nerine Festival in Guernsey from the 6th to the 20th October 2012.

The Priaulx Library is open from 9.30am to 5.00pm, Monday till Saturday and is to be found above the festival greenhouse, at the northern end of Candie Gardens.

We hope that the library will also have on display their two original Douglas manuscripts and related materials.

31 May 2012


The Facsimile Edition of I.33 was on display at the Antiquarian Book Fair and there was a great deal of interest in the project. The books next outing will be at the International Medieval Conference in Leeds from the 9th to the 12th of July

31 May 2012


Extraordinary Editions are delighted to announce the launch of their Waterloo anthology. This magnificent volume contains an unparalled collection of Waterloo materials collected from archives worldwide. The writing is especially selected to bring the battle to life and to make the hairs on the back of your neck stand up and the anthology contains over 200 illustrations, sketches and diagrams. The book comes with a collection of maps in a separate portfolio and the two are housed together in a slip case.

14 March 2012



The Exemplary Edition of the SAS War Diary broke cover last night at the Royal Military Academy Sandhurst courtesy of the Sandhurst Foundation. The Foundation hosted a presentation of two copies of the Diary to the Academy including a Navigators Edition. After a lecture from Gordon Stevens the alumni were delighted when Major Mike Sadler shared some of his favourite stories from the early days of the Regiment.

23 February 2012


The Facsimile Edition of I.33 will lbe at The Park Lane Arms Fair on next Sunday March 4th. The fair is at the Marriot Hotel, Duke Street W1 and runs from 10am until 4pm.

21 February 2012


The facsimile edition of I.33 will launch this weekend the 25th and 26th of February at SWASH the Symposium on the Western Arts of Swordsmanship through History at the Royal Armouries in Leeds.

SWASH is the flagship event of the British Federation for Historical Swordplay and Extraordinary Editions are delighted to be revealing the designs for I.33 over the weekend.

9 February 2012


I.33 is being restored at the Leather Conservation Centre in Northampton and as part of the process the book has been "pulled" or taken apart as the layman might call it. Extraordinary Editions took the opportunity to photograph each page as it lay flat with a high resolution digital camera, radio linked to a series of flash lights that help to ensure perfect lighting and later perfect reproduction. Photography was by Gary Ombler.

24 January 2012



The SAS War Diary will be on display at MILITARIA 2012 this Sunday 29th of January. This is Europe's premiere indoor military collectors exhibition and you'll find us on 187 in Hall One from 9am until 4pm with several editions on display and an opportunity to examine them in detail.

9 December 2011

ORIGINALS EDITION at British Military Tournament


The SAS War Diary was on display at the British Military Tournament at Earl's Court on the 2nd, 3rd and 4th of December. It was hugely well recieved [as was the tournament] especially the Originals Edition. We have now sold or have orders for over 75 of the 100 copies of the Originals Edition so if you are thinking of getting one please don't leave it too late.

22 November 2011



The team behind the SAS War Diary have just won the Limited Edition and Fine Binding category at the British Book Design and Production Awards for 2011 for their work on the King's Survey of the Channel Islands. The judges said the book was,"a beautiful, excellently crafted product any book lover would be proud to own. With good design, crisp printing, exceptional high quality quarter leather binding and a well thought out choice of materials, this is a first class presentation. A joy to hold."

20 October 2011

DSEi News


We have had a great deal of support from the many friends we made at DSEi. You can now find us on the Defense Media Network and Defense Procurement International websites. We would also like to thank Top of the Range , specialists in extreme equipment and clothing, for letting all their customers know about us.
If you can help spread the word please send us an email and we will supply you with our e-brochure and order form.

5 October 2011

Current Order Line Status


We have solved the phone problems that have plagued the past few days and we have extra staff on hand. It is now much easier to reach us by phone and we would like to thank you for your patience. We are also delighted to announce that the Victoria Cross and Originals Editions are selling exceptionally well. If you are interested in either of these editions we would ask you to register your interest sooner rather than later.

28 September 2011

Diary Order line News


As the Diary is such an important and valuable work Extraordinary Editions oversee all aspects of the ordering and delivery process. We do not use call centres or service providers. When you call or email us you are dealing with us directly. This means that there are still some delays processing orders, but please be assured they are all in hand.

25 September 2011

Unprecedented demand for The Diary


We have been overwhelmed not just with orders, but also with affection and support for the Regiment. We are aware that our phone lines are very busy and that it can be difficult to get through. We are doing everything that we can to alleviate the situation. We will have extra staff on standby and please be assured that every message left on the phone line will be answered. If you wish to order a copy of the Diary and are able to email us please do so, your order will be accepted from the time of your email and confirmed and finalised when we get back to you. We wish to thank everybody for their patience, kind words and support.

23 September 2011

Welcome to our new website

The SAS War Diary website is designed to be easily naviagable and to supply our customers with everything they need to know about the Diary. If you have any problems, comments or suggestions please e-mail mm@extraordinaryeditions.com

It is designed by Chris Barrow at Archive

22 September 2011

SAS War Diary launches


This evening the Special Forces Club hosted the launch of the public edition of the SAS War Diary. Representatives of the SAS regimental Association mingled with the BBC, the Telegraph, History Today and a cross section of what one used to call the great and the good.

13 September 2011

SAS War Diary previews at DSEi


The SAS War Diary went on display at DSEi the world's largest defense and security show at ExCel London from 13th to 16th September. The Diary was incredibly well recieved, attracting attention from the Minister for Defence procurement among many others.

8 July 2011

SAS War Diary printed

The SAS War Diary's first print run was completed today July 8th 2011. The diary has been printed on a specially ordered Munken paper of an exceptionally heavy weight of 240 gsm in order to most closely replicate the paper of the original. Printing took place at Butler ,Tanner and Dennis in Frome the UK's largest specialist book printer.