Jeremy's Books of Southampton, England, sell a wide range of antiquarian, vintage and collecatbletable books, maps, cigarette and tea cards

Telephone: 01598 763531 |  07890 438890 

Vintage, antiquarian, collectable books, maps, cigarette and tea cards

We have a number of scarce Observer's Book titles...

The Observer's Book of Ferns, one of the rare and collectable editions available from Jeremy's Books of Southampton, England
The Observer’s Book series began in 1937 with ‘The Observer’s Book of British Birds’. During subsequent decades, editions from the many titles found their way into most homes and into the hearts and memories of countless families across the UK and beyond. 

Since the early days there have been avid collectors, starting, perhaps, in childhood and then as adults finding great pleasure in owning not only every title but, in many cases, every edition and every variation of every title. There are many. 

At Jeremy’s Books we recognise that for the casual buyer, who perhaps wants to replace an edition lost over the years, or for simple personal interest, the title and date of the edition will be sufficient. But the serious collector will require more information and we endeavour to make such information available on each edition we offer for sale. 

As well as many readily available editions, we also have a number of scarce titles such as the Observer’s Book of Ferns with a black and white dust jacket.

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Reference sources:
Our primary reference source for Observer’s Books is the amazing self-published work by Mick Burgess, widely known simply as ‘The Look’. This painstakingly assembled volume includes details and images of every variation of every Observer’s Book ever published, including the ‘New’ Observers books and overseas editions. Our thanks go to Mick, without whose work we would be none-the-wiser in many respects. 

The Observer’s Book of Observer’s Books’, number 99 in the series, by Peter Marren and John Carter provides additional information in more narrative form and is also an invaluable source to the bookseller and collector alike.
Dot numbers on the Observer's Book series
Decoding descriptions:
 ‘Dot number’ - Most original format Observer Books included a ‘dot’ number which was a printer’s code and usually indicated the year of printing. For example: 587.367 is the code for the 1967 edition of ‘The Observer’s Book of Basic Aircraft- Civil’. 

The code can usually be found on one of the title pages at the front or at the foot of the last index page at the back. Several titles had a number of reprints within a single edition issue and the dot number indicates that particular reprint.
DJ = ‘Dust Jacket’ – we will usually say if it has been ‘clipped’ (the price from the inside flap) or ‘unclipped’. Where the publisher has clipped it and printed with an updated price, or placed a new price label over the original price we will say so. 

DJ-1 = the version of the dust jacket as described in ‘The Look’ by Mick Burgess. 

HN = ‘High Number’ – the number of Observer titles listed on the DJ (either inside front or back flap or on the back DJ). This might be a two-part number such as 25/29 indicating the number of current titles and then including those ‘in preparation. 

We often also include additional detail on the binding, where an edition has been issued in different board coverings, and sometimes an additional printer’s mark, although these are easy to miss (see photo).
At any one time we will have a good quanity of Observer Books in stock but not yet sorted and listed. If you are looking for a particular title and/or edition, please drop us an email or call and we will let you know if we have what you are looking for.
Observer's Books Printers Marks