NCL Series Five


Previous Series Next Series


Series Five Collage

Series Five Collage

The fifth version or series of the library began publishing around 2000. The titles sold in $7.95 to $14.95 range depending on the time the book was issued and the number of pages it included.

The philosophy changed at M&S over the years since the NCL’s first publication back in 1958. Where under Sinclair Ross’ editorship, the library balanced the contemporary authors with ones from the beginnings of Canada’s creation, and included titles that were popular with titles that where more significant for historical reasons, after the departure of Ross, the library gravitated more toward sales and the perceived popularity of new additions. By Series Four this new philosophy was in full maturation. Titles that were unpopular were dropped.  With so many titles that were traditionally re-issued going the way of the Dodo, maintaining the numbering system seemed both antiquated and possibly confusing for new readers/collectors of the library. So it was abandoned. From Series Four on, books would stand on their own merit, new titles were issued with no numbering and sales would be the major factor on whether books included in the library would continue to be published.

The Design

The design was an improvement over Series Four. The designers didn’t limit themselves with two or three base colours. Series Five had a wide variety of base colours, ranging from a bland grey to a eye-widening lime. Artwork continued to be used. The same logo from Series Four was used except it ran down rather than sideways on the spine.

The Front Cover

The front cover is dominated by a painting and its coloured border. It occupies about 75% of the cover. A colour is chosen for the border, and the 25% remaining is a lighter version of that colour. Within the border of the painting, at the lower center is printed the title (in the same lighter colour of the bottom 25%). In the lower 25%, printed in a larger font and in white is the author’s name. Below the name, printed in black is the identification of the afterward author.

The Back Cover

The back cover is cut up into four sections with the bottom right quadrant covering most of the area. Its background colour is a light yellow and contains the book synopsis at the top and contains the identity of the painting (on the front cover), the ISBN, the book price, bar codes and M&s’ logo, catch-phrase and website address below.

The top right quadrant shows a small cut of piece of the front cover painting. The bottom left quadrant is of the same color as the front upper painting background and contains the NCL logo. The top right quadrant is black and “New Canadian Library” is printed in the lower area in capitals and in white.

The Spine

The spine is all black except at the top where it is colored the same as the painting border on the front cover. Inside is the NCL logo followed below by an inverted triangle. Below the triangle is the author’s name and book title in capital letters in white.

NCL Series Five in my Collection

Book CoverBook TitleAuthor
New Canadian Library A Bird in the House Book CoverA Bird in the HouseMargaret Laurence
New Canadian Library A Fine Balance Book CoverA Fine BalanceRohinton Mistry
New Canadian Library Arcadian Adventures with the Idle Rich Book CoverArcadian Adventures with the Idle RichStephen Leacock
New Canadian Library As for Me and My House Book CoverAs for Me and My HouseSinclair Ross
New Canadian Library Barometer Rising Book CoverBarometer RisingHugh MacLennan
New Canadian Library Bear Book CoverBearMarian Engel
New Canadian Library Digging Up the Mountains Book CoverDigging Up the MountainsNeil Bissoondath
New Canadian Library Fruits of the Earth Book CoverFruits of the EarthFrederick Philip Grove
New Canadian Library Last of the Curlews Book CoverLast of the CurlewsFred Bodsworth
New Canadian Library Life in the Clearings versus the Bush Book CoverLife in the Clearings Versus the BushSusanna Moodie
New Canadian Library Man Descending Book CoverMan DescendingGuy Vanderhaeghe
New Canadian Library Next Episode Book CoverProchain EpisodeHubert Aquin
New Canadian Library No Love Lost Book CoverNo Love LostAlice Munro
New Canadian Library Roughing It In The Bush Book CoverRoughing It in the BushSusanna Moodie
New Canadian Library Running in the Family Book CoverRunning in the FamilyMichael Ondaatje
New Canadian Library Sarah Binks Book CoverSarah BinksPaul Hiebert
New Canadian Library Such Is My Beloved Book CoverSuch Is My BelovedMorley Callaghan
New Canadian Library Sunshine Sketches of a Little Town Book CoverSunshine Sketches of a Little TownStephen Leacock
New Canadian Library Surfacing Book CoverSurfacingMargaret Atwood
New Canadian Library Swamp Angel Book CoverSwamp AngelEthel Wilson
New Canadian Library The Apprenticeship of Duddy Kravitz Book CoverThe Apprenticeship of Duddy KravitzMordecai Richler
New Canadian Library The Diviners Book CoverThe DivinersMargaret Laurence
New Canadian Library The Double Hook Book CoverThe Double HookSheila Watson
New Canadian Library The Mountain and the Valley Book CoverThe Mountain and the ValleyErnest Buckler
New Canadian Library The Stone Angel Book CoverThe Stone AngelMargaret Laurence
New Canadian Library The Tin Flute Book CoverThe Tin FluteGabrielle Roy
New Canadian Library Thirty Acres Book CoverThirty AcresRinguet
New Canadian Library Two Solitudes Book CoverTwo SolitudesHugh MacLennan

Previous Series Next Series


Leave a Reply