Shall We Tell The President?
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Jeffrey Archer originally published Shall We Tell The President? -- a thriller about an attempt to assassinate the president of the United States -- in 1977, and set it in the early 1980s with Edward M. Kennedy as the imperiled president and Sen. Dale Bumpers as Vice-President.
After Kane and Abel and The Prodigal Daughter were runaway best-sellers in the early 1980s, he updated the book in 1987. The new version is set in (presumably) the early 2000's, with Florentyna Kane, the main character in The Prodigal Daughter, as president and Sen. Bill Bradley as Vice-President.
The plot is functionally unchanged, but the identity of one of the main characters changes radically, which has the side effect of connecting the revised book (but not the original) to an established series. The two editions are functionally equivalent if you're reading it as an assassination thriller, but not if you're reading it as part of the Kane and Abel "trilogy."
The original and revised versions are currently combined . . . should they (in a perfect world) stay that way, or be separated out . . . ?
From your description, I'd say the differences are sufficient to warrant separation.
#1 I have to agree with #2. I would also put in a disambiguation notice explaining why the 2 shouldn't be combined.
I'll disagree with #2 and #3 and say they should be/remain combined...
They're different, if closely related, books, so they should be separated.
I think this is a very interesting case. I suspect two people at a cocktail party who didn't know the story about the change could talk about the two different books without knowing they'd read slightly different versions (people who read a lot tend not to remember non-series character names over time). Meanwhile, if one of the party guests knew about the change, the conversation would probably center on which version each of them read and whether they can discuss any differences.
So, I think either combined or not could be appropriate, but there needs to be a disambiguation notice in either case, explaining this interesting situation.
I know of a couple of analogous situations where authors wrote Star Trek books, but the publisher butchered them so much before publication that the author republished the original as fan fiction. There I'd keep them separate because of the radical difference in the nature of the publishing, even though they really are the same book.
Was it simply a find-replace of names and dates or was the revised edition more substantially edited to reflect the changes in character and setting. If the later, I'd definitely say separate. If the former, I'm less sure.
They are not that similar if I remember correctly - details were changed to link to the other books... So I would say to split them (and I need to figure out where my old copy is...)
>7, 8 I read the original and not the revised version, but if I remember correctly Archer made small-but-significant alterations throughout to "update" the politics, technology, and so forth.
In the event, the 24-hour gap between messages 3 & 4, I went ahead and split the work, with appropriate disambiguation notices. :-)
What ultimately clinched it, for me, was that -- without the split -- the "Characters" and "Series" sections of Common Knowledge become incoherent because the two versions have such different data. The original edition isn't part of a series, but the revised edition is; the original edition has a dozen real-world characters who don't appear in the revised edition, and vice-versa. Capturing that seemed worth the work of splitting the two editions.
That said . . . I'm not emotionally invested enough in this to go and split it out again if it gets recombined, so if that winds up being the consensus, so be it.
I agree. I am pretty sure that the updates were not a replace of names only - it could not have worked this way.... I've read both versions in different languages so a lot of differences may have come from that - but not all of them.
I might get to it and split them one of those days (the day I decide to enter both my versions most likely)...
Actually - they are already split. I might do a fast check to see if I need to fish an edition out but they seem mostly split
The first edition: http://www.librarything.com/work/12350893
The part of the series: http://www.librarything.com/work/43464
There is a third week there that need to get assigned somewhere though: http://www.librarything.com/work/12350936
Mmmm . . . I did the split yesterday, after messages 2 & 3 and before the rest of the conversation. :-)
The third group were the ones I couldn't definitively identify as original edition or revised edition (mostly because they lacked ISBN's or any other identifying data. Most of them seem to have the late-1970's version of the cover (a rifle with the presidential seal visible in through the telescopic sight), suggesting that they're the original edition, but . . .
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