I decided to do a bit of counting to see where I am in this journey to collect at least one copy of every NCL book in existence. That is, every title in each series issued by M&S over the history of the library. According to my calculations, there are a total of 196 titles in the main series, 13 in the “O” Series and 17 in the “W” series. That is 226 titles all together.
The 226 titles is not the total number of books I will collect as I am also collecting these books in every series (or, to put it another way, every different book cover). If I was to total that number, according to my best estimate from many hours of research, it would come to approximately 680 different book covers.
We must understand that it is impossible to know exactly how many covers there are, but here is what my research and collecting has resulted in:
In Series One there are 68 titles in the main series, 5 in the “O” series and 7 in the “W” series for a total of 80 books. I have found one variation that I believe is part of the “O” series of Series One, but it could be an early version of the “O” series of Series Two.
That makes 81 covers in total for Series One. There could be other variations, but I have not seen or heard of any.
In Series Two, the main series numbering increases up to 152. So we know that there are at least 84 titles (#69 to #152). Add to that 62 titles I have found between the numbers #1 to #68, and that makes 146 titles we know exist. The titles that I haven’t found between #1 and #68 are as follows:
#30 – Each Man’s Son
#32 – White Narcissus
#36 – Grain
#47 – Remember Me
#55 – Tiger Dunlop’s Upper Canada
#63 – The Harbor Master
I have also found 5 variations of titles in the main series which brings the total to 151. There is also 3 penguin-style black covered variations that came out during the time Series Two was issued and a play tie-in for Sarah Binks that was issued as well. That increases the total to 155.
There are 12 titles in the “O” series and 10 in the “W” series that we know exist. I have found copies of 6 of the 7 “W” series titles that were published in Series One (W1 to W7) in Series Two covers (only W4 – Frederick Philip Grove I haven’t found), which brings the total to 183. I have found 2 variations in the “O” series of Series Two bringing the final total of books in Series Two to 185.
That makes in total for Series One and Two 266 book covers.
In Series Three the numbering increased to #196. So we know that #153 to #196 exist or 43 titles. Of the numbers #1 to #152, I have found 84 titles that I know exist. Missing titles are as follows:
#007 – The Last Barrier and Other Stories
#011 – Habitant Poems
#013 – Earth and High Heaven
#016 – The Stepsure Letters
#021 – The Second Scroll
#024 – The Rich Man
#026 – The Town Below
#028 – My Discovery of England
#030 – Each Man’s Son
#032 – White Narcissus
#034 – Turvey
#035 – Nonsense Novels
#039 – Judith Hearne
#040 – The Cashier
#044 – Sarah Binks
#047 – Remember Me
#051 – The Backwoods of Canada
#052 – Music at the Close
#057 – Short Circuits
#060 – Further Foolishness
#061 – Samuel Marchbanks’ Almanack
#062 – The Lamp at Noon and Other Stories
#063 – The Harbor Master
#064 – The Canadian Settler’s Guide
#067 – Behind the Beyond
#081 – John Sutherland: Essays, Controversies and Poems
#082 – Peace Shall Destroy Many
#083 – A Voice From The Attic
#085 – Roger Sudden
#086 – Mist on the River
#088 – The Deserter
#090 – Allegro
#094 – In Search of Myself
#095 – Feast of Stephen
#097 – The Wooden Sword
#098 – Pride’s Fancy
#100 – Above Ground
#101 – New Priest in Conception Bay
#102 – The Flying Years
#103 – Wind Without Rain
#104 – Tête Blanche
#106 – Canadians of Old
#107 – Headwaters of Canadian Literature
#110 – The Heart of the Ancient Wood
#113 – Dust Over the City
#114 – Our Daily Bread
#115 – The Canadian Novel in the Twentieth Century
#116 – The Viking Heart
#117 – Down the Long Table
#121 – The Disinherited
#125 – A Candle to Light The Sun
#128 – I Am Mary Dunne
#131 – The Manawaka World of Margaret Laurence
#132 – Consider Her Ways
#133 – His Majesty’s Yankees
#134 – Jean Rivard
#135 – Bogle Corbet
#136 – A Choice of Enemies
#137 – Responses and Evaluations: Essays on Canada
#139 – The Cruelest Month
#140 – The Atonement of Ashley Morden
#141 – Wild Animals I Have Known
#142 – Scann
#143 – On Poetry and Poets
#147 – High Bright Buggy Wheels
#148 – Big Lonely
#150 – God’s Sparrows
#152 – The Great Comic Book Heroes and Other Essays
If we total, that is 127 covers from the main series in Series Three. I have found two covers for The Double Hook (the regular one and a Canadian Classics version). That makes 128 found covers. I must assume that some of the titles missing from above exist, but until I find them we can’t be sure. As for the “O” series, I have found 5 covers. The missing ones are as follows:
O2 – Masks of Fiction
O3 – Masks of Poetry
O6 – The Poems of Earle Birney
O8 – Nineteenth-Century Narrative Poems
O10 – Poems of Al Purdy
O11 – The Damnation of Vancouver
O12 – The Selected Poems of Irving Layton
Adding the 5 “O” series covers makes 133 total in Series Three. The “W” series was discontinued in Series Two.
So the total known covers for Series One, Two and Three is 399.
In Series Four the numbering was discontinued. In my searches I have found 105 covers (which includes an “O” series addition called Canadian Poetry: From the Beginnings Through the First World War). It replaces all the other “O” series books as none were printed in Series Four.
So the total covers for Series One to Four is 504.
For Series Five I have found 64 titles, Series Six I have found 19 covers in paperback form and 80 in trade paperback form. I have also found 13 in Print On Demand form (called NCL Essentials).
The final total of covers for all series counts to 680. Although I’m not confident this is a complete number, I am quite sure that it is very close.
So far, I have put up 400 books I have in my possession. Those are 391 in the main listings and the nine I own put in the Errors and Variations page (that were not needed to be entered in the main listings).
I have found five more books recently that will be added shortly. That makes 405 of the 680 that I know exist which are in my collection. That is just under 60% completed in seventeen months.
If anyone owns books I have listed as missing in this blog post, or has any variations other than the ones listed on the Variations and Errors page, or has books in Series Four, Five and Six not shown in the Book Covers Project section, let me know in a comment below. I will contact you in order to get images of these books.
Until next time,
The Ignorant Intellectual.
***Update Feb. 15th, 2015***
Four books can be added bringing the total to 684 known covers in the NCL
The four books are:
1) Series Four’s Where Nests the Water Hen (I found this book a couple days ago)
2) Series One’s Such Is My Beloved (I found an alternate cover for the book while looking through my collection, see A Mystery Cover in Series One for more details)
3) Series Three’s The Canadian Settler’s Guide (#64)
4) Series Three’s Wild Animals I have Known (#141)