Barnes and Noble Leatherbound Classics

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Barnes and Noble Leatherbound Classics

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Edited: Oct 31, 2010, 9:45 am

There has been some discussion of these books in this thread. In an attempt to keep the discussion threads on topic, I thought I'd start a separate thread to discuss these volumes. (Since it's pretty unlikely anyone would want to start a whole new discussion message board just for the B&N books) As I stated before, I own almost all of them, and would be happy to provide pictures and brief reviews should anyone wish them. As I said before, the volumes are of varying quality, and I would not be surprised if some of them were not even real leather.

As to price, you definitely want to purchase from their website. You can use this link to access their complete library of leatherbound classics. They do add books quite frequently, and the Dickens book was just added within the last two months.

I recommend signing up for and then buying through there for an additional 4% off of everything from B&N. Combine that with B&N's 10% website discount and free shipping and you have a great deal. I purchased a TON of these books a couple months ago, when the website was running a buy one get one 1/2 off sale on these editions. Combined with the freebies above, I was rolling in books. Check out my table soon after the score:

By far, the best books from this series are:

Grimm's Fairy Tales
Arabian Nights
The Divine Comedy
Wicked and Son of a Witch
Chronicles Of Narnia

Those 5 books are a MUST purchase, even if you have the EP duplicates. They are really beautiful books and make great reading copies. I actually PREFER the B&N editions of Grimm's and Arabian Nights to the EP editions of the same!

The rest of the books vary wildly in quality, which is very strange. They all use different types of leather and paper, and there is almost no consistency from one book to the next. It certainly makes them exciting to collect!

Another series that I've only seen from B&N is the "Library of Wonder" series. It is new, and so far there are only two books in the series. However, they feature several adventure books packed into one hardcover volume, with many tasteful two-tone illustrations. Probably wouldn't look right next to EP volumes, but if you are in a B&N store any time soon, they are worth checking out, especially since they're so cheap! You can see all the Library of Wonder books here.

Jul 6, 2010, 10:35 pm

Thank you so much for this. It is pleasure coming to LT and reading your insightful posts

Jul 6, 2010, 11:15 pm

Is the Huckleberry Finn pictured Barnes and Noble? It looks like the Easton Press edition.

Jul 7, 2010, 12:53 am

3: the Huck Finn is definitely the EP edition.

Where are the books printed? Also, have you seen the 17-volume EP Arabian Nights set? Although it's massive, it's the COMPLETE Burton translation, and it's quite magnificent!

Jul 7, 2010, 10:14 am

Oh yeah, forgot Huck made it into that picture. It happened to arrive the same day, so it was on the table. It is indeed the EP edition.

Will check the print location when I get home, but I know they are from Barnes and Noble publishing company. Don't know if that's an honorary title, or if these guys really do have their own print facility. I have a feeling they do print the books themselves, as there are several other lines of classic B&N books with their logo on them.

I have seen the 17-volume set in EP's fliers before they discontinued it, and in the occasional auction online. I cannot imagine reading every one of those stories, much as I might want to.

Jul 7, 2010, 11:38 am

Another interesting thing about the B&N leatherbound classics is that they have changed the covers on some of the books over the years. When I bought my set of B&N books a few years ago, Wonderland had a burgundy leather cover with cover art featuring the white rabbit. The current version of Wonderland has a pink cover with cover art featuring Alice. The cover for Illiad/Odyssey has also changed. No changes to the interiors of the books, just a new cover.

For those who care about leather vs. non-leather covers, I can vouch for Anderson's Fairy Tales, Jane Austen, Wonderland, Dickens, Narnia and 1001 Nights being leather. I don't own Wicked or the Vampire Chronicles, so I can't comment on them. I'm pretty sure the remaining books in the series are not leather. Some of the books are illustrated (Narnia and 1001 Nights both have very nice illustrations). Most are not.

I bought the Library of Wonder version of Burroughs' Mars Stories are few months ago and was really impressed with the quality and quantity of illustrations. I passed on Jules Verne because most of the works featured in the Library of Wonder compilation are available individually with nicer bindings. Both of the Library of Wonder books were in the bargain bin at my local B&N, so the price is right.

Another hidden treasure you can find in the B&N bargain bin is the "Fall River Classics" version of Poe's tales. The Fall River Classics books are similar to the Library of Wonder books, but seem to focus on "classics" such as Walden, The Prince, etc... Most of these books are nice, but nothing special. But the Poe volume is amazing, containing hundreds of illustrations, many of which are in color. There is an illustration every three of four pages. I paid around $7 for my copy, and I think it far surpasses any collection of Poe's work I've seen from Easton, Folio, etc...

Jul 7, 2010, 11:55 am

I have quite a few of the Barnes and Noble leatherbound classics too. I can't comment on how well they will hold up long-term but they are definitely beautiful books and very affordable. I paid about $12 each for a set of 10.

My favorites:
Grimm's Fairy Tales
The Odyssey
Chronicles of Narnia

Least favorites:
Jane Austen - Seven Novels (paper too thin, type too small)
Vampire Chronicles (doesn't really match the quality of the others)

Some of the editions do make the type too small, the paper too thin and the book too thick. If you are thinking of getting some of these books I would recommend you first take a look at the book in person at a Barnes and Noble bookstore.

Edited: Jul 7, 2010, 2:44 pm

Yes, the covers have evolved over the years. I own a copy of the original brown leather Lewis Carroll, which I much prefer to the "punched-up" pink version. I also know that Gray's Anatomy has undergone an update, and the color of the page gilt on the Edgar Allan Poe book has changed from gold to silver (not sure which is newer, I have the gold myself).

I have in some cases purchased two copies of these alternate cover books, just to compare differences. I can also vouch that they are page-for-page identical inside. This even includes the type and thickness of paper, thickness and feel of leather in the binding, etc.

I agree with Katsin, that many of the volumes attempt to cram too many books into one tome. The Dickens, Holmes, Rice, Austin, and Shakespeare volumes are just so massive, they are almost impossible to read from unless you have a reading stand. It also seems that with these mega-volumes, they skimp on the binding and paper quality to compensate for size and still hit the 20 dollar price tag. The bindings on the books I just mentioned all feel more like pleather than real leather, and even if they are real leather, the endboards are very thin.

The exception to this is the Shakespeare and Gray's Anatomy books, which both feature a nicer, more supple leather in the bindings. Shakespeare has a nice overall look to the typography, though the font is two column, and too small to really read. Add in a lack of commentaries of any kind, and this becomes more of a reference book than a primary reading source. Gray's has all the illustrations you'd expect. As it is a reference volume by nature, it is an exceptional volume for those interested in using it as such.

I am almost positive Wicked is real leather, if only judging by the feel. All of the B&N classics are alleged to be real leather, according to B&N themselves, and I believe them. It's just a question of the quality of leather used.

Jul 7, 2010, 8:02 pm

I don't see it now but the Barnes and Nobles website seemed to be hinting at a few revised Leatherbound Classics later in the year. About a month ago they were listing a Jules Verne and Hitchhikers Guide to Galaxy release in September and October. I really hope the Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy gets remade as I've been holding out on buying Hitchhiker's for just that possibility.

Jul 7, 2010, 8:31 pm

Actually, the leatherbound hitchhiker's guide is already available from the B&N classics series. It's just a totally different style, and doesn't match the rest of the series. The leather cover is...poofy? Hard to explain, but it's filled with air and it squishes. Still a cool book, though, and it's one of the first I picked up from this series.

To answer the previous question, I looked inside the books, and they are printed and bound in China. Big surprise. Hey, what do you want for 20 bucks?

Jul 10, 2010, 7:16 pm

I picked up the Alice in Wonderland volume today at Barnes and Noble. I've thumbed through the previous edition. I am not particularly fond of the uber-pink cover but I love the internal illustrations and the cover...not to mention the stories. My store had them all. These are great reading copies, though I doubt they will withstand a lot of abuse over the years. It said the book was covered in patent leather, which is essential "leather scrap puree". For $20, they are real bargains and great for a beginning collector.

Jul 13, 2010, 6:01 pm

There is a new book coming out in this series
Jules Verne:Seven Novels. It is available for preorder now in the B&N website.

Jul 13, 2010, 8:12 pm

Wow, so it is. I'm almost a little bummed, as this blows away any need for the "library of wonder" version of the same. Keeping my fingers crossed hoping it features some of the wonderful artwork available for these novels...

Jul 14, 2010, 12:10 pm

My guess is that the leatherbound Verne will be similar to the leatherbound Wells. If the leatherbound Wells includes many of the "library of wonder" illustrations, there's a good chance the leatherbound Verne will too. I passed on the leatherbound Wells because I already have many of the books included in that volume, but I may reconsider that decision if it turns out that the leatherbound Wells and Verne are similar to the leatherbound Narnia in terms of the number and quality of illustrations.

I hope B&N produces more "library of wonder" volumes. They aren't as pretty as the "leatherbound classics," but they're pretty solid books that would make great additions to a family's children's library. B&N also has some nice hardcover versions of Rhyme of the Ancient Mariner, Idylls of the King, and The Divine Comedy which have Gustave Dore's illustrations (there is a full page illustration nearly every other page).

Jul 14, 2010, 3:27 pm

Thanks Motown!
I really liked the B&N Hardcover version of "Rime...". Its on clearance too! At $5.99! I think I will pick it up right now!

Jul 14, 2010, 4:34 pm

One strange thing about B&N... The only place I've seen these books (leatherbound classics, library of wonder, nice copies of Idylls, Divine Comedy etc...) is in the clearance bin - I've never seen these books in the full price section.

On a related note, Borders book store has started to sell "Border's Classics" which are basically clothbound versions of classic literature, similar to Everyman's Library or LOA. The covers are prettier than the Everyman and LOA books, but the quality of the paper, binding and ribbon don't compare. It seems that we're seeing a resurgence in "semi-fine" binding books, and this is a great thing.

Jul 14, 2010, 6:00 pm

I think borders and B&N have always sold "semi-fine" books, at least as far as I can remember. Also, I am always skeptical of their leather-bound books. Are they archival quality? What paper do they use? sludgetrough noted that the books are printed in China. Even if the books are still of decent quality, I would rather patronize EP which are all printed in the US. The price is obviously a draw, but I would rather pay a bit more and get an EP book... my personal opinion :)

Jul 14, 2010, 8:35 pm

I agree with astropi. Its definitely better to spend a little more and get genuine and archival quality products. However, the B&N books are good as reading copies.

Jul 14, 2010, 8:38 pm

I feel the same way, astropi. Not only that, but rather than have one bulky volume containing 7 books (e.g. Narnia, Jane Austen) , I'd much rather have the books in individual volumes.

Jul 14, 2010, 8:47 pm

This message has been deleted by its author.

Edited: Jul 15, 2010, 1:07 pm


I admire your commitment to buying American whenever possible, and I agree that "Made in China" is rarely the mark of quality. The quality of the materials used in the B&N leatherbound classics varies significantly, and with many of the titles, I agree that versions published by Easton / Franklin / Folio Society offer a better value, even at 3 times the price. But the B&N versions of Narnia and 1001 Nights are particularly well made, and I would be remiss if I didn't speak up in their defense.

I seriously considered purchasing the Easton Narnia books before I decided on the B&N version, so I can offer a side-by-side comparrison of the two. The Easton books are more rugged as they're bound in thicker leather and have heavier boards. I don't treat my Easton books with kid gloves, and they've handled considerable abuse without showing signs of wear. The B&N Narnia isn't fragile, but you can't just toss it in your briefcase on a regular basis the way you could with the Easton Narnia.

On the other hand, the B&N Narnia has a better binding. I can open the B&N Narnia to any page, and both the covers and pages will lay flat. You can't do this with the Easton Narnia. Even if you were to hold the covers down, the pages on the Easton Narnia won't lay flat. This is true of most, if not all, Easton books. Easton does many things well, but its books do not represent the gold standard of binding, and IMHO LOA and Everyman are leagues ahead of Easton in this area.

Finally, there's the paper. The Easton Narnia is printed on archival paper. The B&N Narnia doesn't indicate the type of paper used, but I doubt B&N used archival paper. Cotton based archival paper is preferable to paper made from wood pulp, but the gap in quality is much slimmer than most people assume. These days, most commercially produced paper is acid free (for example, even the cheap copier paper you buy from an office supply store is acid free). The reasons for this are a bit off-topic for this post, but essentially, the paper industry discovered that it's actually cheaper to produce acid free paper than paper than low-acid paper. The Easton Narnia's paper can be expected to last for 500 years or so. The B&N Narnia's paper won't last that long, but properly stored, the book's paper can be expected to last 150 to 200 years.


I agree that packing six or seven titles into a single volume often results in a book that's too unweildy to comfortably read. This is cetainly the case with the B&N Austen. I don't think you can say that about the B&N Narnia. The B&N Narnia is approximately 2 inches thick, whereas each of the Easton Narnia volumes is approximately 1.5 inches thick. You aren't talking about a significant difference.

Jul 16, 2010, 1:45 pm

I agree with everything MoTown said about the Narnia book. Regarding the illustrations, however, they are nothing special or different from the originals. Every copy of this series from the paperbacks I had as a child, to the softcover all-in-one version I bought later on, and every other one I've looked at has had these same exact black and white illustrations. The artwork in the Arabian Nights and Grimm's however, I have never seen before. They may well have been specially commissioned for these volumes. Again, those are definitely the "big three" to own from this series, and even if you own other editions, you will want these in your collection.

Another book that no one has mentioned is Dante's Inferno. This book also features the softer, thicker and more supple leather, as well as wonderful illustrations throughout. I'm not familiar with the pedigree of this book, so I can't say if the illustrations are anything special, but the volume is definitely worth checking out.

Jul 28, 2010, 6:52 pm

I was wondering if anyone owns the leatherbound Wells? I'm thinking of buying it, but don't know if it's one of the nice ones in this series? I have the leatherbound Narnia and Wicked and am impressed with both.

Jul 28, 2010, 10:18 pm

Got ya covered, leo6. The HG Wells is a decently made book, but not one of the more impressive ones. It does feature the thicker, and more supple feeling leather, which is nice. Also, it is very striking on the shelf, as it features a royal purple color, with bright silver gilt on the pages. It looks particularly cool next to a black book (something about purple and black just pops) Another cool, and relatively uncommon feature, is that the designs on the front and back end-boards are different.

The book features a brief introduction by Brian Stableford, a writing teacher at the University of Reading. (did I miss a pun there?) Unfortunately, aside from that, there are no special features in the book; it's simply 7 stories crammed into a 928 page tome. There is no frontispiece, or title page, as such. The first non-blank page of the book is a black and white reproduction of the cover (on the right-hand page), and the next page is the copyright info facing the table of contents. Then the introduction, then the stories, and finally, there's a half-page blurb on the last page "about the author."

There are no pictures, unique fonts, unique papers or anything else within. I will say, however, that for the amount of material that is crammed into one volume, it is not overly heavy or difficult to manage. The font is reasonably sized, so it's actually a surprisingly good reading copy. So many of these stories are available in individual deluxe versions from EP and other booksellers, but if you're an HG Wells novice, picking up 7 of his most beloved novels in one volume for under 20 dollars is indeed a beautiful thing. Of the B&N Classics that cram many stories from a single author into a volume (Jane Austen, Sherlock Holmes, Anne Rice, etc), this is probably one of the best.

Edited: Jul 28, 2010, 10:31 pm

I really love these B&N classics, and I own all of them save 2. If anyone is interested, I can put the time into doing a small blurb on all of the books, much like SilentinaWay did for the Reader's Choice volumes here. This is a lot of work, however, and if there is no interest, I will simply slip back into the shadows from whence I came...

Note: Updated the initial thread picture of the book spread to more accurately represent my current collection. No more Huck Finn!

Edited: Jul 29, 2010, 10:42 am

@ sludgetrough
I am curious, when did you buy you copy of 'The complete works of Lewis Carroll'? I wish I could buy this purple/brown edition instead of the pink one. I was under the impression that the purple/brown was a much older edition but I think your post is quite recent...? Did I just miss the chance of buying it by a few weeks?

Jul 29, 2010, 10:16 am

I purchased the edition of Alice in Wonderland shown in sludetrough's picture in December of 2009 so it was not very long ago that it was offered. Most busy B&N stores are probably carrying the new pink cover but some sleepy B&N may still offer it.

A beautiful cover but I do worry about the rabbit as it seems to be a glossy sticker attached to a debossed depression in the cover. I worry that it could come loose in time. Several of the B&N covers are like this. The stickers do seem to be sturdy enough that they could be re-attached if they ever come loose.

Jul 29, 2010, 10:25 am

Are there any more pictures of the Iliad/Odyssey around? That's the one I'm really interested in.

Jul 29, 2010, 11:24 am

>26 MashedPotatoes:

If you aren't able to find a copy of Wonderland with the older cover at a B&N, try ebay. I saw a copy of Wonderland with the older cover listed recently, although the seller set the opening bid at $30.

Jul 29, 2010, 2:03 pm

@ MoTown

Could you provide the link for the listing you are talking about because I can only find two and they go for 104$ + 32$ shipping and 57$ + 28$ shipping.... I find them quite overpriced.

I found a listing for a near mint copy on ABE for 30$ + 10$ shipping. I might just go for that one....

Jul 29, 2010, 6:06 pm

I purchased my copy of the Lewis Carroll complete works only about 4 months ago. At the time, B&N had started phasing out the cover in favor of the new pink one. I had to drive about 20 miles to another store just to grab the brown cover, which I much prefer.

The cover is not purple(ish) as someone mentioned, but is a deep brown, and much more manly than the pink one :) I actually purchased a copy of the pink book to see if there were any differences. They are page for page identical...same type of paper, endpapers, introduction, everything. The leather used in the covers and the thickness of the endboards and leather are identical. The only difference is the title page, which in both cases is a black and white reproduction of the cover.

I thought it was important to point out that the books were the same, because the TITLE changed. The Pink book is called "Alice and other stories" or something like that, but lacked the word "complete." Fear not, however, the book is indeed complete and you can't go wrong with either of these volumes. They are among my favorites of the B&N Classics line.

I will try to get some pictures of Alice and Iliad/Odyssey as soon as I get the time.

Edited: Aug 12, 2010, 9:58 am

Anyone purchased "Gray's Anatomy"? I'm keeping my eyes on it, it looks like a great reference book and I like the design of the cover. You never know when it might come in handy... like dictionaries.

Jul 29, 2010, 10:41 pm

That is one of the few books I did NOT buy, but I have looked through it extensively at the bookstore. It is indeed the complete, unabridged Gray's Anatomy, including the hundreds (thousands?) of drawings and diagrams that the book should contain. To say it is a bargain at 20 dollars is the understatement of the decade. It is a beautifully made book, and if you are interested in medical reference, you'd be a fool not to own it. The book is a bit thick for casual reading, however, so I would again emphasize that it's more of a reference volume...perhaps to be left open on a book-stand.

Edited: Aug 11, 2010, 6:14 pm

Just saw that B&N has updated their website to include the pictures from the upcoming " Jules verne: seven novels" title, in the 'leather bound classics' series.
I loved the pictures so am thinking of pre-ordering mine! Any idea, if this will be illustrated?

Aug 11, 2010, 9:16 pm

Wow, I love the cover and overall style of the book. If it's anything like the other B&N volumes where they try to cram too many books in one volume, it will be pretty small font, and not illustrated. This was exactly the case with the B&N Sherlock Holmes, Anne Rice, Hans Christian Anderson, Jane Austin and others. Time will tell if this one is different, though!

Edited: Aug 11, 2010, 10:19 pm

Dante's Divine Comedy

I am going to correct an egregious oversight that has been going on in this thread with regards to lack of mention of this volume. The Barnes and Noble Divine Comedy is a superb example of bookmaking, and I am hoping to share a few images with you that may sway your opinion in this matter.

For starters, it uses the more supple-feeling leather that is also found in the works of Poe and The Iliad/Odyssey. The book features the complete comedy in three acts (Inferno, Purgatorio, Paradiso), and has a nice introduction in the front, and "about the author" blurb in the back. It is the only B&N book to feature a frontispiece portrait of the author.

The main attraction to this book are the many and myriad illustrations by Gustave Dore, and they are beautiful. There is literally an illustration on approximately every other page; far too many to count. There are even some pages that feature two illustrations back-to-back. I am not sure if other volumes of the Divine Comedy feature these same illustrations, as I have not seen the EP or Folio editions, but for 20 dollars, I have never seen such a richly illustrated book. According to the wikipedia article on Gustave Dore, he illustrated 70 plates for the Inferno alone, so extrapolating that out, it's about 210 illustrations total for the three works. The font is well-spaced, and legible, and the entire layout of the book is thoughtful, tasteful, and strikingly opulent. Again, it is hard to believe that such a volume can be produced for under 20 dollars, and unless you have spiritual reservations about the material contained within, any book collector would be foolish not to own this volume.

I have attempted to capture the scope of the drawings with a few pictures, but again, I can't even come close to doing the volume justice. There are far more illustrations than in any other B&N classics book so far, with the possible exception of Grimm's Fairy Tales. (Many of the Grimm's illustrations are merely small border sketches, however. All of the Divine Comedy illustrations are full page plates) Enjoy the pictures!

Aug 12, 2010, 9:03 pm

You are making me wanting to start collecting these. Stop it!

Aug 12, 2010, 9:47 pm

Thanks for the breakdown, sludge. I'm sold.

Incidentally, Dante was quite the life of the party, if that portrait is any indication.

Aug 13, 2010, 4:03 pm

Please note that the covers are bonded leather.

Edited: Aug 13, 2010, 5:32 pm

Aug 13, 2010, 5:51 pm

"Bonded leather" is a very broad term used to refer to a material made with pieces of leather mixed with plastic. In some cases, the resulting product is mostly leather. In other cases, very little leather is used and the resulting product is mostly plastic. Even within the B&N Leatherbound Classics there is a wide range of quality in the bonded leather covers. With some books, the bonded leather is indistinguishable from full grain leather (though much thinner than you would see on an Easton Press book). With other books, it's clear the covers are imitation leather.

So to use your wood analogy, some bonded leather is similar to particle board, but bonded leather can also be similar to plywood.

Edited: Aug 17, 2010, 8:43 pm

Hey everyone, just picked up two B&N leatherbound classics and thought I'd share my thoughts.

Gray's Anatomy is nice to look at; silver gilt pages that put glitter on your hands when you touch them-probably not saying much for the durability of the gilt edge. Bonded leather feels decent, nothing special though. This is the fifteenth edition of the text while the currently published edition is the fortieth edition. There are both pros and cons to having the fifteenth ed., but generally I'd say it's still a good anatomy reference, but not so much the sections on embryology and histology. I bought it more for the heritage of the work than for the content; as a pharmacy student I have plenty of anatomy & physiology textbooks, but Gray's is definitely more detailed on the anatomy side. H V Carter's famous drawings (which were converted to woodblocks for printing) still look amazing. Fairly thin pages, but for 1000+ pages, thicker than I had expected. I think this will be a great addition to my bookshelf.

I also picked up Dante's The Divine Comedy and I have to agree with the glowing review above by sludgetrough. However, the gilt does rub off easily. The illustrations look great.

I think these B&N editions are great for works which aren't particularly interesting or important to me, as opposed to books that I consider special and would try to find an EP/FS/fine press edition of. I think I'll pick up the Edgar Allan Poe and Narnia volumes as well. (All seven Narnia books were part of my childhood, but I really don't want seven volumes at EP prices, I'd rather have one volume. I read them all in a straight shot anyway.) I like the Dickens volume as well, but somehow I feel that many of his stories deserve their own respective volumes. I didn't care much for Great Expectations, anyway. I didn't see the Jules Verne book at the b&m I went to today; it looks great in the images. I think the rest were there.

Aug 25, 2010, 2:43 pm

I just received my copy of Jules Verne and sadly it is just like the Jane Austen, Sherlock Homes... volumes.
No illustrations, tiny, tiny print. The cover looks good though. However, I don''t see myself reading from this volume. The seven novels are:
Five Weeks in a Balloon
A Journey to the Center of the Earth
From the Earth to the Moon
Round the Moon
Around the World in Eighty Days
Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea
The Mysterious Island

Aug 25, 2010, 7:09 pm

That's a real shame to hear, though I'm not surprised. How the heck else are they going to squeeze so many volumes into one book unless they leave out the illustrations and make the print only legible at the molecular level. I guess the answer would be: DON'T squeeze so many volumes into one book.

I am privately hoping that if these leatherbound classics sell well (and all indicators are that they are selling well indeed; it seems like more shelf space is devoted to them every time I walk into the store) that they will consider doing more lush versions of some of them and really starting to compete with the likes of EP.

Edited: Aug 27, 2010, 1:01 am

I recently purchased The Chronicles of Narnia, The Complete Tales and Poems of Edgar Allan Poe, and The Arabian Nights in these B&N editions. I really like the Narnia covers.

Sep 18, 2010, 12:37 pm

Just an FYI, there is currently a buy two, get one free deal on all B&N classics, including the leatherbound classics.

Edited: Sep 23, 2010, 5:35 am

I just want people to know that Current Leatherbound classic of the hitcherhiker's guide to the galaxy (the original black poofy cover one) wasn't a B&N exclusive. I found mine at a Borders for $10 :|

Still looks nice but I think I"ll be picking up the newer one.

Sep 23, 2010, 4:45 pm

48: the Folio Society is releasing a beautiful edition of Hitchhiker's Guide. I personally would far rather have that, than the B&N leather edition. Real leather is nice, but for $10 you're not getting real leather. Also, the FS publishes fine quality books on fine quality paper. Anyway, if you're interested, here is a link:

Edited: Sep 23, 2010, 6:48 pm

Hitchhiker's is also currently one of the titles in the Masterpieces of Science Fiction series from E/P. However, the rest of the series is not available from E/P to the best of my knowledge.

Sep 27, 2010, 9:21 pm

I looked at that site and wow. I love it, but the appeal of the B&N editions are their cheap budget price of $20 but usually I get them on sale.

I saw alot of books at the foliosociety that I would like to get but until I get a better paying job. I might havta hold off on it..

That Leonardo Da Vinci notebook set though...

Nov 3, 2010, 10:11 am

Anyone noticed they changed the cover of Hans Christian Anderson's Complete Fairy Tales? It looks really nice... but so did the previous version.

Nov 4, 2010, 9:38 pm

Ah yes, I knew there was a reason I wanted to go to B&N... Thanks for reminding me!

Wonder why they would change it? Seems a little more in line with the Grimm's. The original red was very nice and quite a Christmas red. I wonder if they are going to come out with a Christmas collection in that color?

Edited: Jan 10, 2011, 7:18 am

Looks like they've come up with a leather bound edition of 'Jurassic Park / The Lost World'. I'm not sure about the white leather though...

Jan 10, 2011, 8:08 am

I own alot of these, but I'm not sure if I like the color on this one, either. They're also not really the same type of "classic" as most of the books in the series.

Jan 10, 2011, 9:05 am

I like both the design and white leather.

Jan 10, 2011, 5:41 pm

Nice design... not exactly a classic but Jurassic Park was a great book, IMO. I am a Michael Crichton fan though. I think I will be picking this up.

Jan 29, 2011, 3:24 pm

This message has been deleted by its author.

Feb 18, 2011, 9:35 am

can you show some images and information about illiad/odyssey im really interested in that and the divine comedy

Feb 23, 2011, 9:39 am

It looks as though B&N has some new editions. I heard a story on NPR regarding how book stores are in trouble with the rising popularity of the nook and kindle. The point of the story was that B&N is having to find new ways to interest customers to buy actual books. I remember thinking that they should simply release more editions of their leather bound classic series.

These new editions are mostly 1 novel, instead of an anthology / collection. In my opinion, they are quite nice for the price.

Titles include:
Dracula - Stoker
The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn - Twain
The Picture of Dorian Gray - Wilde
Pride and Prejudice - Austen
Jane Eyre - C. Bronte
Wuthering Heights - E. Bronte
& 1 Anthology of H. P. Lovecraft - The Complete Fiction (I enjoy Lovecraft, but I don't care for the binding on this one.)

Feb 23, 2011, 10:35 am

I don't know if I like the covers as much on these newer single volume editions, but I really like that HP Lovecraft cover:

Edited: Feb 23, 2011, 10:54 am

The single volumes seem to be part of a "series within a series" since they all seem to be in the same format consisting of a cover with the title, but no illustration, lack of gilded edges, and a quote from the book on the back cover. Still not bad for $13.50 each, though.

Edited: Feb 24, 2011, 4:06 pm

>60 Arknight:

That'll give the LOA a run for its money.

I wish the Dante wasn't Longfellow, but God bless for that amount of Dore illustrations.

Edited: Apr 11, 2011, 9:20 pm

So much is happening at Barnes and Nobel lately, that I just can't keep silent any more! I wanted to touch upon the latest book offerings from B&N, which consist of a single classic volume bound in leather, rather than the typical "collections" that we have been seeing from them.

B&N piloted SIX such books, as you can see in the above post. I've had a chance to go to the store and check these out first hand, and I guess you can consider this my "review." In summary, these books are rather terrible. Sorry to say it, but they are pretty cheaply made, and will not likely appeal to collectors. The leather (if it is leather) is very thin and has no suppleness to it at all. The pages are thin and are painted on the edges rather than gilded. There are no special features of any kind; no illustrations, introductions, or anything else. The 12 dollar price tag is inviting, and you certainly get what you pay for. The production values far exceed that of any newly released hardcover book, and the pages are still sewn, not glued, but collector's editions, they are not.

Now here's where things get interesting. B&N just released another single volume edition of "To Kill A Mockingbird":

This edition is priced at 20 dollars, and it is completely different from the others. You can immediately tell from the weight that the book is of much higher quality. The leather is on par with the other B&N Leatherbound books; not Easton leather, but certainly real leather nonetheless, and quite supple. The book still lacks special features, but the paper is extremely thick and sturdy, and the pages have a very nice gold gilt. The book is definitely collectable, and I think it's a great alternative if you are buying a volume that you don't care enough about to want to spend full Easton dollars. These could also be a good alternative if the book is one where no illustrated edition exists. (I believe this is the case with Mockingbird)

Last but not least, say hello to the newest addition to the B&N classic leatherbound series, a collection of stories by Ray Bradbury:

I have not personally seen this book, so can't vouch for its quality, but stay tuned :)

I am happy to see that B&N is probing the market with different qualities of books at different price points. The Mockingbird offering is extremely impressive for 20 dollars (18 if you order online), and if they could just include a few special features or slightly better leather for just a few dollars more (25-30 dollar range) they could really give Easton a run for its money on certain volumes. I am really excited to see where the series heads from here, so keep your eyes peeled!

Apr 12, 2011, 12:27 am

63: do you know where the books are made? I'm guessing the really poorly-produced copies are from China? What about the higher-quality volumes? Also, any info on where the leather is from (since the leather could be from China but the book might technically be "made" in the USA). One of the things I enjoy about EP is supporting a US company that produces goods here in the US (I understand that at one time basically everything was produced here in the US... sadly, that has changed now that companies are raking in the profits. Although I do have to say, when I purchase US goods which I typically try to do -items such as clothes, are often less expensive than the imports)!

Also, is the Bradbuy collection signed and limited to 700 copies? :)

Apr 12, 2011, 11:26 am

I was perusing some of these in my local B&N yesterday evening.
All the ones I looked at were "Printed & Bound in China".

Edited: Apr 12, 2011, 11:39 pm

Every one of these I've seen has been made in China. BOO! And of course the EP Bradbury is much more collectible and even historically significant. I'm certainly not saying any of these B&N books are an EP replacement, but they are very nice volumes for the price. There are really no other collectible leather volumes on the market at this price point, so they are something to keep an eye on for sure. Also, B&N seems to be really probing around to see what the market wants to buy; something EP doesn't seem to be to interested in lately. For books that I'm only *slightly* interested in, like these three less popular early Bradbury short story collections, the 20 dollar entry point is perfect; heck, it's less than you'd pay for the three paperbacks separately!

Forgive the lack of humor in my reply, I think I am taking the B&N books WAY too seriously. Perhaps a knock knock joke to add some levity? Meh, maybe not. It's after my bedtime; maybe next post. :)

In other news, B&N is publishing many other non-leather but still very collectible volumes under the name of "Fall River Press." Don't bother Googling them, it's useless, but I will have some pictures and reviews of these books up on this thread when time permits.

Edited: Apr 17, 2011, 3:35 pm

>63 sludgetrough: Thanks for the reviews, I may just pick up that edition of 3092::To Kill a Mockingbird.

Jun 17, 2011, 3:21 pm

I was seriously considering the Narnia books...I saw them the last time I was in B&N. I have bought other "leather" or "leather" like tomes from B&N (Edgar Allen Poe collection as well as the Bronte sister), but I think I am too spoiled by my love with EP and Folio books. I like the way both books feel in my hand, the papers they use, many books have a hard time living up to these standards...I just wish I knew about more "fine publishers" than these two, since the Folio books (and even some of the EP boos) can cost a bit more, and hard to justify to husband...

Jun 17, 2011, 4:15 pm

I really like the B&N Narnia edition externally. It's not as garish as it looks on the website (I live in the UK so couldn't see it in person before I bought it). Inside, though, the pages are creamy and quite thin and the margins aren't very big, which makes it a less than ideal reading copy. Pauline Baynes' illustrations are included, but many are smaller than I'd like. For the price, I think it's a pretty good deal but if you're looking for the perfect edition I would skip this one.

I'm thinking about replacing my B&N copy with the individual HarperCollins 'centenary' hardcover editions like this one, but there's not a lot of information about them online.

Jun 18, 2011, 1:55 am

My B&N editions arrived just yesterday (I'm in Australia)
I bought :
The Iliad & The Odyssey by Homer
The Divine Comedy by Dante
Jane Austen: Seven Novels
The Complete Sherlock Holmes by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle
Arabian Nights
Charles Dickens: Five Novels
The Complete Works of William Shakespeare
The Chronicles of Narnia by C.S. Lewis
Grimm s Complete Fairy Tales
Jules Verne: Seven Novels
H.G. Wells: Seven Novels
The Ultimate Hitchhiker s Guide to the Galaxy by Douglas Adams

Overall they're pretty good, NOWHERE near as good as Easton Press
And I mean it, the leather quality is really quite distinguishable and the embossing is fairly average.
Gilding on the sides however is pretty superb, and close to the Easton Press editions.
If you want photos for any of these works (inside etc.) drop a comment!

I have to say, some of the editions are obscenely large, even larger then I thought they would be!
and heck, I own the Phaidon 21st Century for Architecture, and that's easier to read then the Shakespeare tome. (sort of...)

By the way, anyone know where to get Easton Press books in Australia?
I've been hunting hard, but they are nowhere to be found (short of paying $100+ for one of the 100 greatest books...ridiculous!)

Edited: Jul 24, 2011, 1:35 am

I'm very happy that Barnes & Noble are releasing some new books in this collection

The Count of Monte Cristo, The Story of King Arthur and His Knights, The Secret Garden & Peter Pan, Sense and Sensibility & The Scarlet Letter
looks liek they're all going to be released between Aug - Nov of this year.

Jul 26, 2011, 8:49 am

Does anyone know if there's going to be a Mark Twain collection anytime soon?

Jul 26, 2011, 8:08 pm

There was a Mark Twain collection a few years back. It was a complete collection, I believe, and then was reduced to a collection of his more popular books. It was a set of identical book covers, but I prefer to collect the EP Twain books in individual editions because I like the more creative covers. I would imagine it will be awhile before they produce another collection of Twain.

Jul 26, 2011, 8:22 pm

>73 indigosky:: I think you are describing the E/P editions. It seemed to me that Keriah was inquiring about Barnes & Noble Editions, given the subject line of the thread and preceding posts. Perhaps LT needs a Barnes & Noble book thread.

Jul 27, 2011, 12:08 am

74: Oh! You're probably right, wail. I got confused since it's the EP board.

Jul 27, 2011, 1:01 am

Yea I was hoping B&N would release a Twain collection soon, I will check out the EP press one too, thanks.

Edited: Jul 28, 2011, 2:32 pm

Another new edition to add to the B&N radar:

Click here to view the book on the B&N website.

This book again is priced at the 20 dollar mark. I am very curious to see if this latest batch of 20 dollar, single-novel offerings will be somewhat more competitive in terms of quality. I'm not expecting EP quality for half the price, but "Mockingbird" was a very impressive book from B&N. The pages were thick and heavy, and the book quality overall was much better than the early mammoth multi-volume editions. If B&N would just include a few special features; introductions, illustrations, etc, these books would really start to be worth a look.

As soon as I get my hands on one of these in person, I'll give my official review.

Aug 12, 2011, 6:14 am

They are doing a twain collection, here it is.
Adventures of Huckleberry Finn and Other Novels, The (Barnes & Noble Leatherbound Classics)

Realeased in October.

Aug 16, 2011, 5:41 am

Yea I've been dying for this particular collection to come out.

Aug 16, 2011, 9:40 am

I went to the British Library Bookshop today and bought the Jules Verne 7 Novels and Dracula volumes.

These books are not substitutes for EP or FS volumes. But at that price point they are excellent value. They are attractively designed and display a great deal of design passion and fun. Compared to the offerings of most publishers in this price bracket, they are outstanding volumes.

For me it makes sense picking up these books for authors I am probably never going to want to buy in a high cost fine edition. I may look out for some more volumes.

Aug 16, 2011, 9:46 am

>80 Quicksilver66:

I totally agree, I've picked up the B&N Hitchikers books and Wicked books, both of which I would never want a fine edition of, but look fantastic and come at less than the price of buying the separate paperbacks. I also got the Lewis Carroll book, because I tend to buy everything I see with his or the Alice name on it...

I'd be interested to look at one of the 'single book' volumes like the Dracula that you picked up. Are they illustrated?

Aug 16, 2011, 10:00 am

> 81

Liam - I don't think the Dracula edition is illustrated and neither is the Jules Verne.

I love the look of 100 Years of Solitude posted above.

Edited: Aug 16, 2011, 10:10 am

>82 Quicksilver66:

one thing I (and others in this thread) have noticed about this series is that the books and quality vary greatly.

Some are illustrated, some aren't. Some use nice thick paper, some use bible-esque paper. I wish they were easier to find and look at in the UK before orderign them in from B&N.

How much did they cost at the British library? Did they have many there? Do you know which translations the Verne book uses?

I love that 100 years of solitude cover too, but already having 2 versions of the book I think I'll give it a miss.

Does anyone have thoughts on the Bradbury volume?

Edited: Aug 16, 2011, 10:24 am

The Dracula volume cost £15.00 and the Verne was £25.00. They are cheaper on Amazon - but there is noting as nice as instant gratification.

The Verne appears to use the classic 19th century translations. For most of the novels these are apparently ok - the exception is 20,000 Leagues where the classic translation has been panned (although it was the only one available until recently). It's also the translation you will get on the EP 100 Greatest Edition (which I have and it's a gorgeous volume).

The Verne has thin paper and small text. But this is to be expected in a huge compendium of 7 volumes and that's ok with me. The Dracula has thicker paper and page edges dyed black.

These wre the only BN Classics I saw. A few weeks ago they had the Lovecraft and Sherlock Holmes volumes, which were nice. But I have both in far better editions so I did not bite.

I love the look of the Bradbury voliume and I would like to get that.

Aug 16, 2011, 12:56 pm

I posted this over in the Upcoming Books for 2012 thread in the Folio Society devotees group. As the Verne translations are also being discussed here I though it worthwhile to also post it in this thread.

I have read that many of the early translations of Verne's works were not the most accurate. The introduction to the Wesleyan University Press edition of The Mysterious Island states "although half a dozen works carrying the title "The Mysterious Island" are in print, all follow W. H. G. Kingston's 1875 translation, which omits sections of the novel and ideologically skews other passages." A further note on previous translations states the Kingston translation is above average, but changes names and cuts about 5,000 words. The note on the text and translation in the Folio Society edition of Journey to the Centre of the Earth states that up to twenty per cent of the total text of the anonymous Griffith & Farran translation of 1872 (stated as still the most reprinted version as of 2001) bears no relation to the French original. It even gives an example using the opening two paragraphs of the book in French, the FS translation and the 1872 G&F translation side-by-side.

Aug 16, 2011, 2:29 pm

> 85

Lucas raises a very relevant consideration which applies to many of the translated editions in this volume. For the most part they will rely on old translations that are out of copywrite in order to keep the costs down. That consideration has put me of the Dante volume. It's a lovely looking volume but I have never been able to get on with the Longfellow translation. I believe the Homer volume also uses a very antiquated translation.

Aug 16, 2011, 2:52 pm

I just picked up American Gods | Anansi Boys by Neil Gaiman. Silver Gilding. Nice end pages, but not illustrated on the interior.

Edited: Aug 16, 2011, 6:42 pm

Hey does anyone know if they'll get more of the lovecraft leatherbound classics in?
They're out of stock and it doesn't seem to say they'll be getting more in.

Edited: Aug 24, 2011, 1:42 am

Quick review on "100 Years Of Solitude"

Went to the store to check this out and found that it is identical in quality to "To Kill A Mockingbird." See my review above. The size of the book is the same as that of large, omnibus editions such as Dante's Inferno, and Arabian Nights, but the print is very large, and the margins generous. The paper is extremely thick, and almost feels like cardboard. Nowhere does it claim to be acid-free, but this book is nevertheless built to last, is very heavy, and most likely does contain acid free paper. The paper is very nice, and is totally different from any of the other multi-volume books that B&N has put out so far. There are no illustrations or special features of any kind. No frontispiece, preface, intro, outro, notes...nothing but a 1 sentence "about the author" on the back page.

This book would easily be worth 20 dollars if it had some special features of any kind, but with such a basic design, it's more difficult to recommend it. FS and EP also have versions of this title, so I'm not sure which looks looks most striking on the shelf, but the B&N one is a very good reading copy. 20 dollars is less than the price of a new hardcover, so I still say the price is reasonable, but I wish Barnes and Noble would start including some reprinted artwork or anything to liven up these collectible books. They included specially commissioned art in Arabian Nights, and "Grimm's Fairy Tales," so I don't see why they don't continue that trend?

Keep in mind, "To Kill a Mockingbird" and "100 Years of Solitude" have NOTHING to do with THIS SET.
These other books, which include Dracula, Jane Eyre, etc, are total crap. They are light, cheap, small in size and font, have painted edges, cheap paper, and I'm not even sure if the bindings are leather. They are priced at 12 dollars apiece, and are not worth the money.

Hopefully B&N will ditch the cheaper sets and focus more on single-title, high-quality productions like the two we have so far. If they can just add in a few special features, it will be a wonderful alternative to EP for titles which they don't offer, or which you are not interested in paying EP prices for.

Edited: Aug 24, 2011, 1:19 am

Tales of Mystery and Imagination by Poe

Another new offering from the B&N Leatherbound series. This book appears to be too thin to contain the complete tales and poetry, so I don't think it will replace the current Poe offering. However, it is illustrated, and looks to be about the same content as the EP version. I don't recognize the artwork. I'm excited about this offering; it's exactly what I was asking for in my previous thread :)

Will post a review once I get my paws on it.

Aug 24, 2011, 1:20 am

> 89 sludgetrough, if I am not mistaken, 100 Years of Solitude is available in a gorgeous Folio Society edition AND is available currently through Easton as part of their Great Books of the 20th Century series. So I am not sure your criteria for stating "I don't know of any other publishers doing a deluxe edition of this title"

Edited: Aug 24, 2011, 6:06 pm

My mistake, I was not aware of those editions, but thanks for the heads up. This might be a case in which I'm going to stick with the B&N version anyway, simply because it's not my favorite title, and I don't want to pay FS and EP prices for a book I'm lukewarm about. On the other hand, 18 bucks and free shipping from the B&N website, plus 6% back with we're talking :)

Aug 24, 2011, 1:44 am

There is no denying that you would pay considerably more for both the FS and EP versions, even secondhand. So sounds like a good strategy especially given that it is a lower priority title.

Aug 24, 2011, 5:04 am

I paid £12 for my FS 100 Years of Solitude, which is a pretty similar price to the B&N edition...

That said it's a lot easier for me to get cheap second hand Folios here in the UK and a lot harder to get the B&N books at a good price.

I would love any thoughts on The Count of Monte Cristo or American Gods/Anansi Boys if anyone has them?

Edited: Aug 24, 2011, 6:13 pm

American Gods/Anansi Boys is pretty much the same as all the other B&N compilation books. No illustrations or special features of any kind, just the two books. However, due to the fact that there's only TWO books in the volume, the font size is a lot more legible, and it makes an excellent reading copy. The paper is nothing special, it's the standard type that is used with all the other B&N books, not the thick paper in the single-volume editions. The book is sufficiently heavy, the leather is soft, and it feels very good in the hand. A bargain at 18 bucks.

Monte Cristo is not out yet, and neither are any of the other books referenced in this post. They are all slated to come out at the same time. Will they be high quality bindings like "mockingbird", or crappy quasi-paperbacks like "dracula?" Pricing has not been announced yet, so there's no help there. The cover designs, while nice, certainly don't look like something you'd see on a luxurious copy, so I'm worried that they may be more cheap copies, but I suppose time will tell.

Aug 25, 2011, 1:01 pm are no longer selling the picture of dorian gray, the scarlet letter, jane eyre, wuthering heights and the jane austen collection does anybody know of anywhere else iI can buy them in the UK? Or if they''ll be getting them in stock again?

Sep 14, 2011, 4:40 pm

How might one living in the UK acquire the books listed on the Barnes & Noble site? There are a small selection of them on Amazon, but is there a way of having them delivered to the UK from The States? I've noticed UK members here discussing books from this series that I have no idea how to obtain! :S

Sep 15, 2011, 12:00 am

I bought some from B+N and they were shipped to Germany. The boxed sets appear to count as 1 volume, so postage was quite reasonable. That said, I wasn't particularly impressed with the quality. On mine the titles are rubbed quite badly - still legible but looking cheap.

Sep 15, 2011, 12:00 am

I bought son from B+N and they were shipped to Germany. The boxed sets appear to count as 1 volume, so postage was quite reasonable. That said, I wasn't particularly impressed with the quality. On mine the titles are rubbed quite badly - still legible but looking cheap.

Sep 15, 2011, 4:50 am

>97 GaryAlexanderStott:

Just order them from the US site. As starkimarki says the postage is fairly reasonable (especially if you buy sets, but even buying single volumes I think it was cheap) and we do not pay any import tax on books in the UK so don't worry about being charged by customs.

You can also get the B&N books from Amazon (as you said), Waterstones or the British Library.

They tend to cost more and have a limited selection though. Personally I'd order direct from B&N, if you buy the 10 book set it's an absolute bargain.

Sep 15, 2011, 5:27 am

>100 LipstickAndAviators: "we do not pay any import tax on books in the UK so don't worry about being charged by customs."

Are you sure about that?

Edited: Sep 15, 2011, 6:22 am

>101 ironjaw:

Quite sure. I've imported large amounts from Easton press, Barnes and Noble, Heritage Press & LEC books and not paid any import duties or tax.

The one time they have tried to charge me is when the seller had declared the items by their book titles on the custom form, and not declared that they were in fact books. After calling customs and getting them to check the contents of the parcel I was then able to get them to remove this charge.

I think most 'printed material' is free from import charges, but there are some 'book's you would be charged for, for example diaries and notebooks are charged under the code for stationery.

ETA: Going away to look into this a little more, I notice books also have 0% VAT here in the UK... why is it they are so expensive then?

Sep 15, 2011, 7:33 am

Okay, so let me get this straight, your not charged any fees for buying/importing books from Amazon US and eBay. I'm buying Easton press, LEC books mainly from the US and pay around 33% on top in fees, import duties, VAT and post office administrative charge. I recently bought some LEC books for $600 and had to pay another $200 in fess.

I want to go, hide away and cry.

Sep 15, 2011, 7:53 am

>103 ironjaw:

Do you pay for imports from the UK? Perhaps you should route your books through here? ;)

I feel your pain though, as I have imported plenty of other goods (such as rare DVDs) from the US, for which I've often had to pay hefty charges.

Sep 15, 2011, 8:38 am

Not from the UK in general but from Amazon UK I get charged Danish VAT at 25%. As long as I stay away from business or merchants I won't get charged

Sep 15, 2011, 11:54 am

> 105

But if you pay the 25% Danish VAT then they have to deduct the UK VAT from whatever you are buying if you do so from a store right?

Fortunatly we do not have VAT on books here in Norway, but with our "fee horny" politicians I do not know how long that will last.

Though I noticed when I lived in Copenhagen that I found books to be quite on the expensive side indeed.

Sep 15, 2011, 2:01 pm

>105 ironjaw: yes of course with regards to Amazon UK and any merchant within EU that has an income of more than DKK 200.000 from Danish customers has to get VAT registered in Denmark and deduct their home country VAT and charge Danish VAT. UK does not charge VAT on books. Long live Great Britain.

Sep 18, 2011, 5:08 am

I can verify that Lipstick and Aviators is quite right - we do not pay import tax on books here in the UK. In fact, books are not taxed at all in the UK and are exempt from VAT along with food and children's clothes.

Edited: Sep 18, 2011, 8:03 am

Hold on - did I just read that the box sets on the B&N site only count as 1 volume when it comes to postage? That's VERY reasonable!

Sep 23, 2011, 10:14 am

Black Beauty has been added to the series, in the same styling as the other three illustrated children's classics...

Sep 23, 2011, 2:33 pm

Oct 1, 2011, 8:48 am

So far I have 3, The Divine Comedy, The Collection of Ray Bradbury Novels and Stories, and The Ultimate Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy
So far, Hithhiker is my favorite, its delightful dry humour makes it unique, usually poking fun at humans or making idiots out of them. The story can, at times, move quite fast, but that doesn't matter to me enough to ruin the stories for me. The Ray Bradbury Stories are like most Classics, no illustrations or special features. That being said, the stories are still great. It includes what I'd assume as over 20 short stories and it also has the Martian Chronicles and the Illustrated Man. The leather feels okay but its pretty easy to tell that its very low quality. The Divine Comedy is absolutely excellent. It contains all three volumes and beautiful illustrations. The leather, as said way above, is quite supple, much better than the others I possess. It has pretty gilded edges and a bookmark that's thicker than the others that lay on my bookshelf. All in all, the Divine Comedy has the best quality and The Ultimate Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy is my favorite.

Edited: Nov 12, 2011, 1:35 am

This message has been deleted by its author.

Nov 12, 2011, 3:55 pm

Does anyone know the translation used by the Grimm? Or would like to give a sample of the rhymes used by the princess at the beginning of "King Thrushbeard" - about the fat, thin, and short suitors (that's the benchmark I used for identifying unknown translations)?

Nov 26, 2011, 2:47 am

Sounds like I'm among the few who prefer the omnibus editions. We had a few similar "collectors editions" over our mantle when I was a kid... my favorite part was reading all the smaller/"lesser" works by an author alongside more famous novels.

As a result, I've also got most of these volumes in my bookshelf (the newer covers for the Lewis Carroll & Hans Christian Anderson). Started as a small but affordable habit, but they've come out with a ton of new titles this year so it's becoming a somewhat more expensive one, now...

Nov 26, 2011, 2:48 am

For xiansch:

Re. Grimm's Complete Fairy Tales - the copy I have doesn't name a translator - there is a copyright 2009 introduction by contemporary author Jane Yolen that references "Professor Jack Zipes, a translator of 'The Complete Fairy Tales of the Brothers Grimm'" in a way that doesn't make it at all clear if that is the translation this B&N edition "Grimms Complete Fairy Tales" is based on.

Other credits: Cover Illustration, c. 2008 by Marc Burkhardt, Text of this 1993 edition published by Barnes & Noble Inc., by arrangement with Doubleday Book & Music Clubs, Inc. All illustrations reproduced with the kind permission of The Arthur Rackham Family and The Bridgeman Art Library. Cover design: Jo Obarowski. Book design: Patrice Kaplan. Endpaper illustration: De Agostini Picture Library.

The rhymes are:

The Princess was led in front of the rows, but she had a mocking epithet for each. One was too fat, "what a tub!" said she; another too tall, "Long and lean is ill to be seen," said she; a third too short, "Fat and short, not fit to court," said she. A fourth was too pale-- "A regular death's head"; a fifth too red-faced-- "A game-cock," she called him. The sixth was not well-made enough-- "Green wood ill-dried!" cried she...

Is that what you needed?

Edited: Nov 27, 2011, 5:37 am

Although I have all the Arkham House Lovecraft volumes I would quite like to get the Lovecraft volume in this series. As a Lovecraft fan it is quite nice to have everything in a single hefty omnibus in addition to the separate volumes (any excuse to buy a book). But, I have heard that the Lovecraft volume is plagued with numerous typos and misspellings.

Nov 30, 2011, 7:18 pm

It appears these Barnes and Noble Leatherbound books have found their way into the hands of crafters:

Nov 30, 2011, 11:02 pm

118: haha! brilliant :)
Couldn't have happened to a better book... which is to say, I'm not a fan of the B&N books, so I find this a good use of them.

Dec 2, 2011, 12:10 am

>118 acidneutral:: Ahh, well whoop-dee-freakin'-doo!!!

Edited: Dec 2, 2011, 6:51 pm

This message has been deleted by its author.

Dec 3, 2011, 11:53 am

>120 iluvbeckett:: Having a bad day?

>119 astropi:: Its interesting the other books they use as well, including the Penguin Hardbound Classics for these docks. I have to say I am slightly curious to see their construction.

Dec 3, 2011, 3:44 pm

122: I'm curious if you can still read the book, and if so how difficult is it to open the spine? Well, a little bit of solder and a cheap cable, and it's not that hard to built a dock. I do admit, I would never have thought of turning a book into a dock, or duck (I'm sure a good magician could do the latter :)

Dec 3, 2011, 4:03 pm

123: It seems rather ingenious to me! My chord just dangles from my Mac. I never thought perhaps it might look spiffy astride a book. Its rather clever, actually.;)

Edited: Dec 29, 2011, 3:22 am

In case anyone is interested - a few new additions. Ernest Hemingway (4 Novels) and Isaac Asimov's "Foundation" trilogy, and a Stephen King collection (3 novels) coming out in January.

Dec 29, 2011, 9:59 pm

Thanks, I'll most likely go for the Foundation trilogy.

Dec 31, 2011, 1:16 am

You guys just might get me collecting used Eastons, yet (anything else is really out of my price point). But a couple of thoughts I had, just wondering what others think:

I like the BN editions because:

They are mass market. A new one comes out, I buy it (and read it, if I haven't previously). They seem well made enough to last my lifetime, at least. I don't have to kid myself into acting like they are valuable/limited in any sense of the word.- everything in the series is either available or routinely reprinted. $20 is a reasonable price for a hardbound book, even royalty-free when there are multiple volumes involved.

The covers may be bonded leather, the endpapers might be paper- but they're pretty! The designs often exude a joy I don't see much of in other collections (except Penguin clothbound classics, but the bonded leather is easier to dust, even if it is mostly plastic. Dog and cat owners probably know what I mean - fur can worm it's way into anything, being able to use a damp cloth once in a while is a huge plus).

Things I don't like: Weird timing. They did 6 books a year for 3 years, then more than 2 dozen in 2011. There are really at least 3 series, the omnibus books and the single volume classics. Or maybe, the omnibus classics, the modern best seller re-issues, the single volume classics, and the children's books. I'm a bit annoyed I picked up Huck Finn in a single volume, only to have e omnibus come out right after. Also, I have way too much Jane Austen, and they don't have that broad a back catalog yet... seems like there are other titles they could have printed, first, from authors that didn't merit larger collections.

I'll make an exception in the case of the 6 book "children's" series. Those are great titles,and they were a bit cheaper, but they were less exciting than a hardback Nancy Drew story, and those cost half as much.

Jan 1, 2012, 12:06 pm

>127 resnovae: "The covers may be bonded leather, the endpapers might be paper- but they're pretty! The designs often exude a joy I don't see much of in other collections"

I absolutely agree; maybe they feel like they don't have to be as careful/subtle/classical/restrained with the designs because they're not really fine press, so they can express themselves more freely.

Jan 7, 2012, 12:46 am

I really do love their covers.

Jan 21, 2012, 6:00 pm

It seems that some of their newer additions are now available:

Has anyone seen Monte Cristo, Foundation, or King Arthur yet? I am quite interested in those.

(Although more in Foundation, I think B&N is best for "modern classics", as there are probably great fine press editions for the other two I mentioned on eBay, maybe even in the same price bracket if they are Heritage.)

Jan 22, 2012, 6:22 am

> 130

Interesting to see that the Foundation Trilogy volume uses one of the illustrations from the EP volume on its cover.

I have seen the Count of Monte Cristo. It is quite attractive and better than many other editions on the market. But I still prefer the classical look and dimensions of the Everyman’s Library edition.

Jan 26, 2012, 9:05 am

> 130 Monte Christo is one "blingy" book. It's also pretty hefty. I have to be honest - I bought but haven't read yet. King Arthur is part of the 6-book children's classic series... they aren't anything like the adult bindings. Everything is flat, no molding, and the "leather" is paper-thin. Even if you buy the $45 bundle from, I think they're kind of a rip-off (not to mention - probably abridged for younger readers, but that's speculation on my part).

>131 Quicksilver66: I think the image is cover art from the original editions. Also, keep in mind the BN book contains no other illustrations, and contains only the "trilogy" - where EP has the same 3 books in a single volume - but as part of a 5-volume "Foundation" series.

Jan 27, 2012, 8:52 pm

Very helpful posts, thanks everyone!
I made an account on this website just so I could ask- does anyone have the Shakespeare one yet? I'd like to know how its laid out.

Jan 27, 2012, 9:26 pm

shakespeare pics would be very appreciated!

Jan 27, 2012, 11:38 pm

>134 hhz:, I have the Shakespeare, it has a nice cover, but no real illustrations with the requisite picture of the Bard in the front. I will try to take some photos this weekend.

Jan 28, 2012, 4:21 pm

Jan 29, 2012, 9:57 am

From the photos, this wouldn't be anything exciting. The King James version of the Bible is probably the most common leatherbound book in the English language.

However! You didn't include the ad copy: "The majestic scope and poetry of the King James translation's language made an incomparable impact on Western religion, culture, and literature that still resonates today. This gorgeous gift edition also contains over two hundred beautiful, rarely collected full-page illustrations by Gustave Dore (1832-1883)."

"Over 200" sounds like the COMPLETE set of ~238 Dore Bible engravings, minus the ones for Judith, Tobit, Maccabees, and the Apocryphal chapters of Daniel!

Not only are the Dore illustrations a first-class feature in and of themselves, but including them all should necessitate a fairly large font. I say this because I ordered a leatherbound Dore Bible published by "First Glance Books", and the font is so small that all of Genesis takes up just 13 1/2 pages, so only a fraction of the 29 engravings Dore did for Genesis are included. So also with the other highly-illustrated books.

If I guess right, we can expect this volume to be as great as the Leatherbound Classics Divine Comedy, though much thicker.

Edited: Feb 1, 2012, 3:42 pm

>131 Quicksilver66:, 132

Thanks for the info. Personally, I think the only books in the Foundation series I am likely to reread are the three in the original trilogy.

>136 gotmoon:, 137

Wow, if it does have the complete set of Dore illustrations I may have to pick it up. I'll check it out if I see it. I love my B&N copy of Divine Comedy.

Feb 4, 2012, 12:27 am

This might force me to buy a bible :-)

Feb 4, 2012, 4:27 pm

>134 hhz:, finally got around to taking some pics. The only illustration on this edition is the cover art. The cover is actually very nice, with a nice pressed design. I also liked the end papers on this edition. The interior has just the text, so I've limited the interior shots. It was nice enough that I decided to leave it out on one of my tables on rotation since it makes an impressive display piece.

Feb 6, 2012, 5:28 pm

Very nice!

Edited: Feb 6, 2012, 11:53 pm

Interesting... when did you pick up your copy of Shakespeare, hamletscamaro? I have the black cover w/ red & gold trim and it looks like it might be an entirely different edition! Mine's labled 'The Complete Works of William Shakespeare," and the cover page reads "The Edition of the Shakespeare Head Press, Oxford." The layout is different, too.

Feb 6, 2012, 11:53 pm

Archangel-Michael - Genesis is 80 pages - 51 pages of text, double-columns, and 29 illustrations. The text is a bit smaller and much more closely set than the text in The Divine Comedy (single spaces, and the font is maybe 20% smaller). Also, the pages are quite a bit thinner (not onion skin, but definitely thinner). The cover is really awesome, though.

Feb 6, 2012, 11:53 pm

Resnovae I think your edition is the Barnes and Noble edition. The edition in hamletscamaro's pics is the Yale Shakespeare edition.

Edited: Feb 7, 2012, 12:04 am

SirFolio16 - yes, mine is a Barnes and Noble edition of "The Complete Works of William Shakespeare"... and @hamletscamero's pic appears to be a Barnes and Noble edition of "The Yale Shakespeare - The Complete Works" (check out the bottom half of the title page for the imprint). It seems like a lot of times, B&N updates their covers without changing the contents - that's why I thought it was worth noting these are actually two entirely different editions. I'm assuming H's is an earlier version than mine, because I haven't seen the red cover since I started collecting.

Edited: Feb 7, 2012, 12:48 am

For anyone who is interested - has added Anne of Green Gables, A Little Princess and Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea to the children's collection.

Edited: Feb 7, 2012, 8:52 am

The Yale edition that hamletscamero has is a different text than the Shakespeare Head press edition. The SHP preceded the Yale Edition by some 20 years and, from what I've read, was a modernized version of the texts, and contained virtually no critical apparatus. I have not seen this particular edition myself, and if I'm wrong on any of these points would appreciate comments from those better informed.

The Yale Shakespeare I know very well--the texts were the first versions I read and the 40 volume set was the first complete set of Shakespeare I owned. It has a voluminous critical apparatus--footnotes, introductory essays, marginal glosses, etc. I understand that there are more recent editions such as the Arden Shakespeare and the Oxford University Press edition which have superseded the Yale Shakespeare as the authoritative edition, but I still drag out my Yale frequently when I come across a passage in the LEC or Folio editions that leaves me puzzled.

Feb 7, 2012, 5:09 am

resnovae - that's very interesting news! Hopefully the font is the size of the B&N leatherbound Arabian Nights, which is the smallest of the "first rate" volumes in this series. (Arabian Nights appears to use a 75-character line and extra-wide outer margin, so it should be just possible to set 40-character double columns in that size. If they used a longer line, well...)

A Bible without the deuterocanon runs to a bit more than 24 times the length of Genesis (51 * 24 = 1224). With 220 pages of plates, this should approach the 1500-page Dickens in thickness. I can't wait to see how readable it turned out.

Edited: Feb 7, 2012, 2:31 pm


I have a B&N edition with much less ornate typography inside, no picture of the Bard outside. The actor's names hover above the lines and type is small. Not sure I've read from it, but the leather is nice a feels like leather with some tooling here and there (or the appearance of tooling) and a little gilt design on the cover.

You can see it (and probably 142's) on this amazon listing.

My Poe is very minimal as well. I think if I want the Harry Clarke illustrations I'll get a Calla edition.

Now that's a cover!

Feb 8, 2012, 12:06 am

>142 resnovae:, 144, 147, etc. I bought my Yale copy at B&N a little over a year ago. I didn't even realize that they had the more recent black bound copy. This forum is always educational!

All the B&N volumns are so much better than the bonded leather editions they carried about 15-20 years ago. I purchased a couple of those and purged those from my library several years ago when my EP count began to increase.

Feb 8, 2012, 9:46 am

Another FYI- looks like prices are going up. Full retail on the previous editions was $20 ($18 web). Stephen King and King James are $25 ($22.50 web). I always pay the extra couple dollars on new releases to get them in store, because we're starting to run low on bookstores around here and I want to make sure they don't close up shop... though I've definitely taken advantage of some of the in-store sales (buy 1 get 1 50% off, buy 2 get 1 free, and boxed sets/bundles) and occasional BN member coupon when I was building up my collection (or when I'm buying duplicates as gifts for friends). And I do have a member card that's good for 10% off in-store (once I buy enough books to offset the price of the membership, anyway).

Here's another series I've seen:

I haven't seen one up close IRL so I can't speak to the quality or lack there-of... but the more restrained covers could be more to some people's liking.

>150 hamletscamaro: I think you lucked out. In some ways, the book designs are very, very similar but yours looks much more "readable."

Edited: Feb 8, 2012, 9:52 am

>117 Quicksilver66: I think I heard there is or soon will be a new printing of Lovecraft that fixes the typos, with a special credit to the reader who helped fix them on the title page? I don't know if that's true, though. when I bought the Mark Twain collection, the web blurb made a point of stating the text was reproduced as originally printed- including mistakes and typos.

Edited: Feb 8, 2012, 4:19 pm

>152 resnovae:

They might be fixed, according to this review:


Posted September 23, 2011

This 2011 edition CORRECTED the 2008 editions errors...

This 2011 'bonded leather' edition of Lovecraft's Complete Fiction, thanks Martin Anderson for help on the texts, and after comparing his long errata list of the 2008 edition, I found they were indeed corrected... (as stores had told me the opposite was likely, I thought to let others know who value this author)... This is an attractive and durably bound book... as to the 'bonded leather', it is mostly a tasteful synthetic alternative to dead animal skin, which may be a plus for some... H.

Feb 8, 2012, 9:21 pm

As long as you get a copy of Lovecraft with the silver gilt, it will have the corrections. The first edition was produced with gold page edges, while the corrected second edition switched to the silver common to the "sciencey" volumes (Wells, Foundation, Jurassic Park, even Gray's Anatomy).

Feb 9, 2012, 4:46 am

What does everyone think of the Iliad & Odyssey volume in this series?

It's certainly an odd duck. At 750 pages, it's about equal to the Arabian Nights, Divine Comedy, or Grimm and thinner than Narnia. Unlike the Divine Comedy, they did it as a prose translation with no illustrations. They could have included a plate at the beginning of each of the 48 books without making the book too thick, though I'm not sure whose public domain illos they might have used.

Feb 9, 2012, 7:52 am

> 154

That's right. I bought that copy a few weeks ago and the text is fully corrected. Look for the silver gilt and you have the revised edition - a magnificent book. I could not resist it even though I have the individual Arkham House editions.

Feb 9, 2012, 7:53 am

> 155

I am not impressed by the Illiad and Odyssey volumes. The translations are very dated and not highly regarded. I feel these particular volumes are shelf candy only and as such to be avoided.

Feb 9, 2012, 10:25 pm

> 157

"Very dated" sums up my sentiment. There hasn't been a prose translation of Homer, I don't think, since Rouse in the '30s, and surely that superseded the older attempts.

Obviously they wanted public domain translations to contain costs, but to me that means Pope, perhaps one of the English language's top five narrative poets.

Edited: Feb 10, 2012, 11:07 am

> 158

The Pope translations are gorgeous and accepted classics in their own right. My EP volumes of Homer are the Pope translations and I prize them. B&N should have gone down this route.

Feb 10, 2012, 6:58 pm

> 159

Those same volumes were my first EP purchases.

Dryden's epic translations are, I think, even better.

Edited: Feb 11, 2012, 8:29 pm

I buy them as shelf candy :-) In all seriousness, though, I assume there is always a bigger/better/newer/more scholarly/more readable translation or version available of almost anything...

I appreciate everyone can have a preference for a particular edition, but chafe against the idea any specific version should be revered as the "definitive" text - any time you have to translate or modernize or annotate a text, there's going to be differences of opinion. And even in the best case, any text old enough to be in the public domain is going to read a little dated.

Not to mention, I've already read some version of a lot of these books before ever picking up the BN (or now, Easton et al) edition.

So, not really kidding when I say I see them all as shelf candy. Delicious, candy-coated tangerine flake eye candy... but also, mind candy. And while illustrations are an awesome bonus, I don't think we'll see them often at this price point unless there is a terrific public domain source.

As for introductions or commentary, I like them but I can live without them. But I'd absolutely be interested in seeing more errata- short stories, personal letters, etc included in some of the larger volumes of collected works.

Edited: Feb 13, 2012, 4:38 am

I picked up the Dore Bible at my nearest B&N last night, so here's my review:

The cover looks great. The black leather has a shield-over-cross design and is blocked with a large amount of gilt and embossed with 14 red circles meant to look like semiprecious stones. Other than the red details, it ends up looking like a Victorian Bible. There are also two shades of brown leather for some reason. The bonded leather is supple and even smells like leather when you unwrap it.

The book is 2.75" thick, a full inch thicker than the Dante volume. It contains the 66-book Protestant canon, which comes out to 1121 pages of text. It has 220 Dore plates, printed on regular paper. You miss out on the 19 he did for Maccabees, Judith, Tobit, and the extra chapters of Daniel, but the set of engravings is otherwise complete.

Speaking of the paper, it's thick for a Bible, but I was expecting the same paper used for their Dore Divine Comedy. The print is set in double columns of 47 characters per line, which is smaller than the 40-character lines I was hoping for. The text is versed rather than paragraphed. The text of each book starts with an illuminated capital, which makes it feel more like a Victorian book.

The other special feature is an introduction to this translation by David Whitford. There are no introductions to the books of the Bible, concordance, footnotes, or cross references. So if you find the font size fine, this is a great Bible for reading as literature. It's certainly the translation to do it in.

Could B&N have made this Bible better? Putting the entire Bible, illustrated, in a single volume is always a design challenge. They could have made it 3" thick like the Dickens volume, which would have allowed thicker paper or a larger font, but not both. I would have very much liked to get the KJV Apocrypha, but that would have added almost 2/3 as many pages as the entire New Testament text. Personally, I'd rather have a 3" thick book and a bit larger font, but there's no perfect solution here.

Feb 18, 2012, 8:59 pm

Got a firsthand look at the B&N leatherbound offerings today at a local store and am sorry and disappointed to say that I was singularly unimpressed. While I realize sacrifices must be made to maintain their attractive price point, I felt the books looked cheap and unworthy to be on the same shelf with my EP's and other small press books. I am not wealthy, nor do I consider myself a snob, but I do feel in general you get what you pay for. I am bummed because they really look better in the pics here than they do in person. I'm glad I at least got a chance to see them in person before making the large order online I had planned.

Feb 28, 2012, 8:02 pm

>unworthy to be on the same shelf with my EP's and other small press books.

Yes. But compared to standard Hardbacks, they don't look that bad :)

Feb 28, 2012, 10:41 pm


Edited: Mar 2, 2012, 10:28 am

I've looked at some of the new ones in person. I have to say I like my older ones because it felt like there was much more leather in the mix. I do appreciate the catalog size increase. Though, for the Lovecraft volume, or others, it would be very hard holding them for an extended period of time.

Edited: Mar 2, 2012, 9:11 am

More new releases for March 17. These are the smaller, "great novels" format - Tom Sawyer, Little Women, and Frankenstein.

I like the cover art on these better than most of those that preceded them in the series... Frankenstein has the same red & black color scheme as the Scarlet Letter, but with lightening bolts on the cover. Tom Sawyer is a pretty shade of blue, with a bottom border resembling a partially whitewashed fence. And Little Women is a pretty obnoxious shade of purple, but there are some cute/whimsical icons that were worked into the border that sort of signify the transition from 1800 girl to womanhood.

Prices are $12 US, or $10.80 online (from the US, at

Mar 2, 2012, 1:08 pm

Man, that Frankenstein looks great. I'd love to see EP get a little more artistic with their covers.

Mar 3, 2012, 9:46 pm

I'd love to see EP get more BN-like in their pricing :-)

Seriously, though, I like these a lot... I've really admired the whimsical covers on the Penguin cloth-bound classics, but my house has a major dust problem and they wouldn't look nice for long.

I do like a lot of the EP covers from the (discontinued) Masterpieces of Science Fiction collection. I wish it was still in print. New EP is still out of my price point, but, when I can find (decent) used that's what I'll be buying.

Mar 14, 2012, 9:06 am

A friend of mine suggested Gregory Maguire's "Wicked" as it is one of his favorite books. I stopped at Barnes and Noble looking for a paperback but actually, for a few dollars more, picked up the Barnes and Noble leatherbound edition. I have to say, this edition is the closest to Easton Press quality that I've come across, from the grain and thickness of the "leather" to the metallic stamping on the covers and the gilt sprayed endpapers. It has a nice heft to it, which reminds me of my Easton Press books. For 20 bucks, I certainly picked up a keeper.

Mar 18, 2012, 2:11 pm

Just seen these two on Amazon UK:

"This 2012 leatherbound omnibus edition of Wilde's writing collects the full contents of his short-fiction collection Lord Arthur Savile's Crime and Other Stories and his two collections of fairy tales for young readers, The Happy Prince and Other Tales and A House of Pomegranates. Also included is The Picture of Dorian Gray"

"This Leatherbound Classics edition unites Charlotte's 'Jane Eyre' and Emily's 'Wuthering Heights' with the lesser known but no less powerful work 'Agnes Grey' by their youngest sister, Anne."

May 9, 2012, 4:00 am

I really hope there is a LOTR trilogy or J.R.R Tolkien collection soon.

Jun 1, 2012, 10:23 pm

@140 Found some resellers advertising copies of your Yale Shakespeare. If the book info is accurate, looks like yours is the 2006 edition. I'm jealous :-)


@171 Thanks for the heads up - I just picked up the Oscar Wilde (one of my favorite writers) & I'm excited to see the Bronte Sisters volume (it isn't even previewed on the U.S. site, yet).

Jun 1, 2012, 10:23 pm

@172 That would be amazeballs.

Jun 1, 2012, 10:28 pm

@171 Ooh!

Found a new children's edition- The Wizard of Oz (I know, I've mentioned I don't love the covers as much as the "adult" series. But I do love the contents):

Edited: Jun 2, 2012, 4:28 pm

So, I'm curious - what other titles would people want to see BN produce "leatherbound" editions for?

Here's some of mine:

Tolkien, obviously (though unlikely, since very few of their collections aren't public domain). Some of his essays and short stories are just as/even more fascinating than his novels. I'd pay a premium for this one, if it included his complete collected works.

Omnibus volumes:

Frank L. Baum - again, an omnibus edition, or at least all of the Oz stories.

Rudyard Kipling - short stories & poems.

A.A. Milne - at minimum, I'd like to see Winnie-the-Pooh, The House at Pooh Corner, When We Were Very Young and Now We Are Six collected in one volume.

Jack London - Everything. White Fang, Call of the Wild, The Sea Wolf, The Iron Heel, The People of the Abyss... I love them all.

Dashiell Hammett - collected works

George Orwell - He wrote so many things, it would be great to see a collection that included his essays. But 1984 & Animal Farm, at minimum.

F. Scott Fitzgerald. - I think we can all agree this needs to happen (I think Penguin may have one, as a series of single volumes...)

Aristophanes plays. I read "The Clouds" and "Lysistrata" in a college humanities class... it's amazing how well the humor holds up. If there's a decent public domain translation out there, I'd definitely read a collection containing all his surviving plays.

Orson Scott Card's "Ender" Series (not every single sequel, just the first four - Ender's Game, Speaker for the Dead, Xenocide, and Children of the Mind).

Single novel volumes:

The Grapes of Wrath

Of Mice & Men

The Catcher in the Rye

Brave New World

Gone with the Wind (Hey, why not? We've all seen the movie).

Anything by Kurt Vonnegut

And just about any recent Pulitzer fiction winner (or nominee) - The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao, Swamplandia, etc.

Jun 2, 2012, 11:54 pm

Well, I much prefer the illustrated ones to the thick author omnibuses. So far B&N has done:

Dore Bible
Dore Divine Comedy
Rackham Grimm's Fairy Tales
Harry Clarke Tales of Mystery and Imagination
Carroll omnibus with Tenniel illos

... from the public domain, and Narnia with (only some!) Baynes illos and Arabian Nights with what look like new two-page color spreads.

So how about some more Dore, Rackham, or Clarke illustrated volumes? I'd especially like to see a Don Quixote with all of Dore's illustrations, which it seems neither Easton nor Franklin have done!

Jun 5, 2012, 11:09 pm

Don Quixote would be awesome. I'm willing to compromise, though - how about more omnibus "collected works" AND more lavishly illustrated single volumes? We all win!

Jun 5, 2012, 11:22 pm

I'm reading "Dune" right now... wouldn't mind seeing that one on this list, either (I'm a sci fi geek). Also, with Bradbury & Asimov already represented, I'd propose something from Arthur C. Clarke (maybe 2001 & 2010, plus Rendevous with Rama and all his short stories).

Edited: Jun 16, 2012, 10:43 am

>173 resnovae:, Wow, this Shakespeare volumn was a cheap $20 edition when I bought it. It is nothing special, and I have it sitting on an end table in the living room since it looks good and I won't care if it is exposed to kids and pets. I didn't realize it would go up in price. Who knew? I buy books to read and enjoy, not really for the investment value. For investments I prefer to stock up my end of the world bomb shelter with water, food, guns and gold. The books are just for enjoyment before and after the apocalyptic event; and of course when my e-reader craps out.

Jun 16, 2012, 6:09 pm

>180 hamletscamaro: LOL!
A couple more titles (no images) on - Illustrated Children's Bible (Oct 2012), Great Expectations/ Charles Dickens (Oct. 2012), Persuasion/ Jane Austen (Oct. 2012), and the Constitution of the United States of America (Sept 2012). Maybe some slightly modified cover art on the children's classics?

Jun 17, 2012, 6:10 pm

*scratches head*

Isn't the US Constitution only like 4,600 words? Why not make it an appendix to an edition of The Federalist Papers?

I'm curious who the illustrator is on Illustrated Children's Bible!

Jul 12, 2012, 8:55 pm

Hey hey book lovers,

does anyone know which translation is used in the B&N leatherbound Count of Monte Cristo?

I have looked everywhere and asked B&N but even they don't know so told me to contact the publisher 'Sterling' (to which they gave me an incorrect link). Have emailed them but they are yet to reply.

Fingers crossed one of you has a copy nearby.. and that it is the Buss translation...


Jul 13, 2012, 2:29 am

>183 tobibliophile:

I do not have the B&N ed. and I hope someone who does will chime in, but almost every B&N ed. of a classic has used the common, public-domain translation available (often Victorian era). In this case, I believe that would be the 1846 translation of Chapman and Hall. The Buss translation is relatively modern (late nineties?) so I would not be too optimistic about if I were you... I don't think B&N wants to pay anyone royalties.

Jul 14, 2012, 3:20 am

Yes I am guessing that will be the case, just letting a tiny optimistic flame flicker until I am told a definite no! Hoping they might have lingering rights to the Buss translation from another publication or something along those lines... A friendly reviewer on goodreads is checking it out for me and I will post his answer here once I hear back.

Any other B&N leatherbounds you don't recommend buying because the older translation overly hinders the reading?

Reading about the difference between the Buss translation and the older one(s) shows it makes one huge difference in this case, so I don't want to find out later I've blindly read some sluggish / diluted translation from yesteryear..


Jul 14, 2012, 11:19 pm

185 part 2...

For anyone interested, I heard back from helpful book owner and it seems that The Count of Monte Cristo translation in these editions is not the Buss one..

Jul 16, 2012, 3:41 am

If buying from Europe can you buy them directly from B&N?

Jul 16, 2012, 6:32 am

>187 ironjaw: ironjaw

I'm not sure on Europe but I live in Australia and bought direct from the B&N website with no problems. By the look of the page describing area postal code numbers ( I see no reason you couldn't buy direct and ship to Europe..

Buying direct from the American site was so much cheaper than getting them here! Each book came to around $23(aus) with postage, compared to the $40 mark they cost in stores here.

Took a few weeks (one book delivered separately to the box even took 7-8 weeks! - I think it may have been held up at customs randomly) but all arrived in good condition and well packed..

Good luck!

Jul 16, 2012, 6:38 am

>188 tobibliophile: Thanks for the info. I'm thinking about the same that the cost is way cheaper but I will have to see what happens as there are also some volumes on Amazon UK

Jul 16, 2012, 1:17 pm

> 187 Faisel, I have had some sent to Germany, ordered online from the B&N website, the packaging was not too great - I had one book with a crushed corner, it came in a mail bag, which meant that customs held it for inspection which was a nuisance. However - the boxed collections only count as one item for postage, so if you hit one of these in a sale, the per volume cost comes way down (under $10 if you like the collection ). I complained about a crushed volume, due to almost non-existent packing protection and was offered 10% ( of the collection price ), I complained a bit more bitterly after that and was given 15%, which was not enough to replace the single volume, but was preferable to the hassle of a return, especially after having stumped up for import duty.

Jul 16, 2012, 1:23 pm

I was just referring to this collection:
which appears not to be available at the moment, perhaps it may be rereleased with a different mix in the future?

Jul 17, 2012, 4:53 am

Starkimarki, thanks so much that, import duties are really a pain, but your right about the boxed collection; that's more worthwhile and cheaper in the long end

Aug 20, 2012, 3:49 pm

I saw that B&N had Star Wars Trilogy listed with their leatherbound classics. Has anyone seen this book? Maybe it's coming soon. There is no picture of the cover provided on the website.

Aug 20, 2012, 4:03 pm

>193 xcrunner446:
Publication date: 9/14/2012

Aug 20, 2012, 8:56 pm

I'll admit, I'm definitely curious about that one! I assumed it was a misprint until I clicked on your link... Also, there's a new Tolstoy out this week:

Aug 21, 2012, 10:11 am

I have to say, the Buss translation is my favorite and perhaps the one which made the novel most accessible to me. I would be thrilled if Barnes and Noble used that one, but somehow I can't quite imagine.

Aug 22, 2012, 2:23 am

>193 xcrunner446:,194 I'm very interested in this one (although to be honest I don't think the books were anything special, just a big SW fan). My last copy of the Trilogy was borrowed and never returned.

Aug 22, 2012, 2:26 am

>195 resnovae: That looks very nice! However, one could probably find the Heritage Press ed. for a similar price on eBay. (Both use the Garnett translation though, too bad.)

Aug 30, 2012, 10:35 am

I would be really grateful if someone could tell me if the Barnes&Noble version of "American Gods/Anansi Boys" contains the author's preferred text of "American Gods" (sometimes it's also called the "10th anniversary edition" according to wikipedia:"A special 10th Anniversary edition, with the "author's preferred text", which includes an additional 12,000 words was published by William Morrow in June 2011.").

Thanks in advance for help!

Edited: Sep 1, 2012, 12:33 pm

Jacturnal - the NG/American Gods book doesn't appear to contain any additional text, just the novel and an author's note from the year it was first published.

Everyone - Star Wars trilogy link now has cover art (I like everything but the spot color - blech. Though of course, I'll buy it anyway).

Also - Just fyi, Amazon has some nice editions of LOTR and The Hobbit for sale (from 2004). The Hobbit isn't imitation leather like th BN books, but it's a leatherette-textured hardcover with slip case/gold embossing that looks right at home next to my BN's and Eastons, and the color art inside is a wonderful bonus. I just got "The Hobbit" in yesterday's mail, and have to tell you, cover is *gorgeous*- you can nitpick all day about books at this price point, but it's still well worth the $20 I paid for it: Here's the link for LOTR I ordered, which hasn't arrived yet. It's a bit spendier, but comes with some maps and other extras:

EDITED TO ADD: And... caveat emptor. On closer look, the bindings of both book appear to be glued, not sewn, into their bindings (see customer images on the LOTR entry at Amazon for details. I checked The Hobbit - it's the same). There's nothing else out there that's comparable in this price range right now... but the $50 I paid for LOTR is now stinging me, a bit. They're still very nice looking and definitely filling a void on my shelf, but I look forward to the opportunity to replace them with something that's maybe less flashy but more solidly built.

Sep 3, 2012, 11:54 pm

>200 resnovae: What do you mean by the "spot color"?

Sep 6, 2012, 6:25 pm

The yellow & blue. Like on an old newspaper, when they'd have pages that were all black and white, and then one or to "color" plates - just to add a "pop" of color - before full coloprinting became the standard

Sep 6, 2012, 9:32 pm

Super random question... anyone have the Jurassic Park/Lost World of this series? If so, any chance you would measure its thickness for me?

In my never-ending quest to eek out every little bit of space on my shelves, I'm wondering if this book is any skinnier than the two hardcovers currently on the shelf...

Sep 7, 2012, 3:36 pm

>202 resnovae: Ohh I see what you mean...I wonder why they didn't use some of that blue in R2-D2.

I don't think it looks too bad, personally. I'm sure I will end up buying this too.

Sep 12, 2012, 3:31 pm

Bought Star Wars today, some pics:

Sorry for the photo quality, I have a very unsteady hand.

A few thoughts:

I like the front cover, back is OK, the spine printing on mine is slightly off-center.

I do not like the first illustration...kinda reminds me of the illustrations used on the front covers of US editions of Isaac Asimov's robot novels. It makes C3PO kinda freaky...not what he should evoke, haha. I somewhat like the second one used on the inside back cover.

Text font and margins seem a little bit overly generous, but that's not a big deal.

Sep 14, 2012, 7:29 pm

Oh, nice! These are the Ralph McQuarrie concept drawings. How many does the Star Wars trilogy include?

Sep 16, 2012, 3:04 pm

>206 hamletscamaro: Ah, I did not know that. That is pretty cool. It only includes these two drawings in the inside covers. Otherwise there are no illustrations.

Sep 17, 2012, 3:26 pm

Anyone have any info on the Constitution of the US and other Writings by the Founding Fathers; and the Illustrated Children's Bible? These seem to be the newest titles in the collection.

Edited: Sep 18, 2012, 2:33 am

I got my Star Wars trilogy today - totally agree, the cover is awesome. Looks sooo much better in person and in your photos than the pics in the online listing! I guess the grey in the listing is actually silver foil, the yellow actually is gold foil... and where it's blue in the online listing pics, the real book has spine-bumps:

The Illustrated Children's Bible is really more like a book of Bible stories ... I don't know what the provenance of the written work is, but it runs about a page or two per story, each following events in the lives of both major & minor figures in fairly modern-ish language that seems relatively appropriate for kids with a 1st-2nd grade reading level (or for reading to a kindergartener or younger).

Large-ish text, plenty of white space, some 2-color filigree illustrating the first letter of each story (they run about 1-2 pages per).

The illustrations seem kind of all over the place, although they all have a sort of 1950's feel (to me)... except where they appear to be fuzzy reproductions of more classical works. Muted colors, a certain documentary/realistic style though - no bloody, gothic agonies on the cross, but no cute animals prancing 2x2 off the ark beneath a gleaming, technicolor rainbow, either.

I haven't seen Constitution at my local BN yet (though they didn't have Star Wars on the shelves yet either, and the customer service clerk who found it out back for me said they were delivered on Aug. 30th!). I also picked up Anna Karenina the other day... equivalent to the Bronte & Austen books, I think. I really like the style of the cover, I wish it wasn't white so it might "popped" a a little more. And looks like there's a children's version of Grimm's Fairy Tales coming out on Sept. 25th.

Sep 18, 2012, 3:37 am

>209 resnovae:, I agree it looks far better in person. That is strange about the blue not being there...I guess they changed the design before or partway through production (?).

Edited: Sep 20, 2012, 1:02 pm

210 - I'm thinking maybe online pic isn't actually photo, it's a scaled down version of the mockup for the graphics... hence the reason everything looks "flat" (non-metallic). Probably explains why some of kids covers that have popped up early on look a bit off, as well.

Here's a link to the children's Grimm on the BN site:

& US documents:

Looks like BN is testing the non-fiction market, they have "Birds of America" available for pre-order, as well:

And If is any guide, looks like there's a few more coming up before the end of the year:

Persuasion (Jane Austen, single novel format) (is this out? I haven't seen it on the BN site, or in the store.

Wizard of Oz (children's format)

Alice In Wonderland and Through the Looking Glass (not sure...)

Great Expectations (single novel)

So, having already confessed I'm going to buy them all ANYWAY... BN, do I really need an omnibus Jane Austen, and then every individual novel? Ditto Dickens, and Caroll (I'll give the Grimm a pass, because children's series is really a totally different collection, more like decent-ish children's hardcovers than pseudo collectibles). Come on. If you are going to dump a bunch of new books on us, could you chill it with the repackaging & find some new material? I think Dover Thrift Editions long ago established that it's out there, even in the public domain.

Edited: Sep 23, 2012, 7:31 pm

>211 resnovae:

I disagree with you regarding the individual Dickens/Austen novels. The compilation books are too cumbersome, impractical and not very aesthetically pleasing. I'd much rather have a separate copy of all of them than have them combined. It's a shame they didn't just do this from the beginning of this collection. However, I really didn't understand their decision to do a Bronte collection after already having Jane Eyre and Wuthering Heights in individual form.

Here's hoping for some really good new additions in the future. I would love to see Gone with The Wind, War and Peace, Don Quixote, Moby Dick, Middlemarch and Madame Bovary.

Also, they added new ones to the site:

Great Expectations:



Sep 23, 2012, 10:10 pm

I hate to rain on everyone's parade who've contributed to this thread, but what is it still doing in the "Easton Press Collectors" group? It's getting VERY long and since my OCD extends to feeling compelled to read every thread in the EP group, isn't there a B&N group that it could be moved to? "Just saying". (Yes, I hate that expression too.)

Sep 24, 2012, 11:29 am

I love the cover art for Jurassic Park, but well.... pink dinosaurs? Looking forward to Frankenstein (B/N leatherbound) due out in the U.K in November.

Sep 24, 2012, 5:34 pm

>213 iluvbeckett:

So press the little x next to it on the list of topics in the group and it won't show on your list. Problem solved.

There is no B&N group and the topic fits here better than anywhere else...

Sep 24, 2012, 8:00 pm

>213 iluvbeckett:
There is a long thread in the Folio Society group about the Westvaco publications. It started there because the Westvaco books (one published each year for fifty years) are similar to FS books in 'style'. This B&N leatherbound thread is here for much the same reason. Not enough of a market to support a group, but of interest to those who like leather bound books.

The OCD in me wants things to be filed in the right place, and for everyone to stay on topic, but fortunately, I manage to overide this and just go with the flow (most of the time).


Sep 25, 2012, 4:45 am

I've just recently started to use the "x" button next to th list of the topics, really great! And it keeps my OCD in line :-)

Edited: Sep 25, 2012, 6:57 pm

I have the majority of this collection, with a few exceptions. I need some help.

1) Is there a COMPLETE LIST (and I mean ACTUALLY complete, not "Wikipedia complete") anywhere out there of all the Barnes and Noble leatherbound collection?

2) Are some of these books out of print already? I can't find a reasonably priced Ulysses S. Grant. Some of the books I ordered had to come from sources other than B&N, such as King Arthur, Wellsprings of Faith, 20,000 Leagues, and others.

3) Are some of these books restricted to the UK right now? (Wizard of Oz, for example, and some others)

4) I've noticed that some of the pictures of the children's books do not have a circle backdrop around the front cover title. Is this an inconsistency in the series, or is it regional, or what? (See the recent Grimm's book, or the Wizard of Oz, to see what I mean).

Thanks to anyone who can answer any of these.

Edited: Sep 25, 2012, 9:08 pm

>218 falverson1:

1. Not sure of a complete list. The best I've seen is just going to the Barnes and Noble website (use view all):

2. I think the old children's books will be going out of print (see question 4 for details). As well as some older random ones like Ulysses S. Grant, Wellsprings of Faith, The Complete Works of Lewis Carroll and the old Hitchhiker's Guide and Hans Christian Andersen.

3. Currently, Wizard of Oz is available on the US website:

Though I can't find it at a store near me.

I believe Persuasion, Alice in Wonderland/Through The Looking Class ( the new $12 edition) and Great Expectations are the only books available exclusively to UK. Though these books look to be available to the states in October. There are also a lot of US editions not available in the UK. For example, they're getting Frankenstein in November.

4. The children's books with the circle are the OLD editions of the children's books. There are now new editions of the same children's books with slightly different coloring (Peter Pan went from teal to green) and the circle removed. These updates came with the release of Wind in the Willows, Grimm's Fairy Tales and Wizard of Oz just this week (September 25th release).

Hope that helps a little.

Sep 26, 2012, 8:48 pm

>219 Robert.:

So all of the children's books have been re-done? Every one of them?

Sep 26, 2012, 8:53 pm

Oh shoot. You're right. :/ Now I feel obligated to repurchase them for consistency's sake. :( I could just do that and pass the old one's along to my mom. She wouldn't care.

Sep 26, 2012, 8:54 pm

Thanks for pointing out the actual B&N page. I had just been typing "Leatherbound Classics" into the search bar. I didn't know there was a tab specifically made for them.

Sep 26, 2012, 10:26 pm

>221 falverson1:
As do I. I guess the other ones'll make for good gifts though.

Sep 27, 2012, 12:19 am

That they shall. They are pristine.

Oct 5, 2012, 1:53 am

A lot of the BN books go "out" of print on their site as inventory runs low, and back "in" with a new pub date (but no apparent changes) on the site when the warehouse gets a new shipment.

Very occassionally, it seems like BN has completely revamped a cover - the ones discussed in this thread so far are the old/new Hans Christian Anderson covers, the old/new Works of Lewis Carroll vs Alice in Wonderland books (burgundy vs. pink covers... not to be confused with the "new" new Alice stories, which is blue).

The two books we've IDd that seem to have had substantial text changes between editions are the old (goldleaf page edges) vs. new (silverleaf page edges) HP Lovecraft - substantial typos corrected between version- & two different translations of the collected works of Willian Shakespeare (newer version is Oxford/Black cover vs older Yale/Red Cover edition).

I've noticed that sometimes the books offered by resellers on and in the US are mislabled... for example, pretty sure the "old" Douglas Adams (plain cover) is actually a Borders offering, while the "new" (laughing planet) cover is actually the only BN version. As far as I can tell, all the "actual" BN books are published by a company called Stirling, and have a note to the effect they were printed by Stirling for Barnes & Noble on the publisher info page.

Oct 5, 2012, 11:10 pm

I went to BN today and found a new leatherbound I'd never seen before. Little House on the Prairie compilation. Was pretty surprised as it's not even on the site or anywhere else.

Oct 7, 2012, 9:36 pm

Robert same here. "Little House on the Prairie, the first 5 novels" Text c. 2006, published 2012 by Harper Collins for Barnes & Noble. First one I've seen that wasn't printed by Stirling, too.

Edited: Oct 9, 2012, 11:32 am

I wonder if all the Children's Classics are coming from this collection (with different covers)? I've been buying them mostly in the event I have a young reader in my life to gift them to... they are good stories. But the new ones don't look strange on the shelf next to the "older" art, I don't think I'd bother re-purchasing to get them all to match. What if they change the covers again, before making it through all 34 titles? The new titles don't look strange next to the old ones - everything is still in the same style... besides after a few covers, you could probably just alternate between the ones with the white spine titles & the black ones, and people will think the variation was on purpose ;-)

Oct 17, 2012, 2:11 pm

Can anyone tell me if Jurassic Park & The Lost World is Illustrated? I can't check in a store because I am in Canada. Thank you.

Oct 20, 2012, 1:54 pm

Just the black & white math/fractal chapter intros, plus endpapers and the title page. It's printed in-text, same as the original book. Nothing "extra" and they aren't seperate plates or anything.

Oct 21, 2012, 3:08 pm

Thanks for the info.

Dec 28, 2012, 12:27 am

Saw a new cover for the HG Wells Seven Novels (now titled "The War of the Worlds and Other Novels") at my local BN Christmas Eve. Didn't get a photo and don't see it online yet, but if the purple & laser beams was too "out there" for you, you might like the new edition more - it's black & silver, and the artwork's sedate. OTOH, if you liked the purple... might be a good time to pick up a copy.

Dec 29, 2012, 8:40 pm

>232 resnovae:
You may want to post this on the continuation thread, here

We should all stop posting on this older link.


Dec 30, 2012, 11:20 am

Yes i agree :-)

Jan 10, 2013, 10:58 am

I started collecting them one month ago and I love these books! Sadly I don't live in the US so I have to order all of them from the internet but they're all in a perfect condition when they arrive. As some of you already wrote is that it seems that the quality of the books vary... The Vampire Chronicles are much more heavy than the other books, also The Chronicles of Narnia seem to have a very good quality. But I'm happy with all of them! :)

Sep 22, 2018, 11:58 am

Does anyone have The Da Vinci Code/The Lost Symbol B&N leatherbound edition. I live outside the USA and thus, cant see the book in store. I would like to know of its quality. Will the cover print run off easily?

I would also like to see its endpapers.
This topic was continued by Barnes and Noble Leatherbound Classics.

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