Open channel D! Continuing our look at unusual book designs this week, we turn the spotlight on Japanese editions of The Man From U.N.C.L.E. My first introduction to book collecting in Japan was when I first moved there as a college student. Continuing the Saturday routine of treasure-hunting, I stumbled across a pile of spy paperbacks at a used bookshop. Inside the stack of classic Bonds were a few U.N.C.L.E. titles- and a new fascination with Japanese editions was born!
As you may have read yesterday, the main publisher for 1960s mystery and Sci-Fi in Japan was Hayakawa (see James Bond: Japanese Editions). The company was founded by Kiyoshi Hayakawa in 1945. As I posted, Hayakawa printed paperback editions of genre books, using a variety of designs over the years that included illustrations and production stills. Their main design concept for all of their books and series, however, was to place mystery and Sci-Fi in the world of modern expressionism through the use of abstract paintings. One of the coolest features of the early releases was the addition of slipcases! Hayakawa's attention to spy-boom era titles included many Man From U.N.C.L.E. books, as well as a handful of Girl From U.N.C.L.E. titles. Most of the editions in Spy Vibe's collection used photo-cover designs with Robert Vaughn and David McCallum, but an internet search has revealed many abstract-painting covers as well. And just like the U.N.C.L.E. books made for the UK and US markets, each volume in the set was numbered. The Hayakawa U.N.C.L.E. series (called Napoleon Solo) included at least sixteen novels. There was also a manga by Takao Saito (Golgo 13), which makes me curious to learn more about U.N.C.L.E.'s broadcast history in Japan! Stay tuned tomorrow for an exciting return to The 10th Victim.
Recent Ian Fleming posts on Spy Vibe: Bond Japanese Editions, Fleming Chinese Edition, Chitty Chitty Bang Bang 50th, Ian Fleming: Mt. Demon Hell Japan, Collecting Fleming, Live and Let Die 60th, new poster announced, 007 Audio Books Update, Appropriating Bond Exhibit, Fleming Letters Mystery, The Goldfinger Variations, Double 007 Book Designs, Double 007 designs II, rare Ian Fleming edition, Book Design Dopplegangers, Turkish Bond design, Ian Fleming Letters, Erno Goldfinger, Noel Coward, Whispering Jack Smith, Hawaiian Guitar, Joe Fingers Carr, new Ian Fleming Catalog, Jon Gilbert interview, Double 007 Designs, Bond audio book reissues, discovery of one of Ian Fleming's WWII Commandos, James Bond book covers, Ian Fleming's Playboy interview for Kindle, Spy Vibe's discovery of a rare Ian Fleming serialization, rare View to a Kill, Fleming's Royal gold typewriter, Ian Fleming's memorial address, Spy Vibe's Ian Fleming image archive.
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