Our Books

‘The Pride of Mankind’, Puff verses for Warren’s Blacking (2005)

With contributions attributed to Charles Dickens. Edited with an introduction by John M.L.Drew. Illustrated with engravings by Bob Guy. Quarter leather, boxed, limited to 240 copies. Consists of a series of 10 advertisement poems for Robert Warren’s boot blacking, printed between March 13 and May 14 1832 in a radical evening newspaper: The True Sun. Charles Dickens had worked as a child for Robert Warren’s brother and rival Jonathan at his factory on the Strand, and was a young reporter on ‘The True Sun’, also on the Strand, when these advertisements appeared. There is strong evidence, clearly presented in Dr Drew’s introduction, that Dickens had a hand in these verses, and one, ‘The Turtle Dove’, is his first identifiable publication. The poem contains the slogan for Warren’s product, “the pride of mankind”, which has been taken as a title for the sequence.It was customary for authors, especially impecunious and aspiring ones like the young Dickens, to earn a little extra cash from “puff verses” of this kind. Typically they display witty versification and a tone of ironic hyperbole. The latent humour is brought out in the engravings by Bob Guy – each poem having a main illustration and a reflective tailpiece in the manner of Bewick.

Price : £60

Shropshire Wildlife

8 Wood engravings by Bob Guy. A limited edition of 25 sets on pure rag paper, printed on an Atlas Press built c.1840, inserted loose in a single gathering booklet with title page, introduction, titles of each print, colophon and Bob Guy’s block of the Atlas printed letterpress in dark green on buff Zerkal Ingres; silk sewn and cased in a half deerskin portfolio with raised bands, gold lettering and tooling, dark green blocking and specially made patterned endpapers. 2008 These engraving were, commissioned by the Shropshire Wildlife Trust in connection with the conservation of Shropshire’s remaining wild places, and the rare birds, insects and plants to be found in them. Though remarkable for their fineness and accuracy of detail the prints show living creatures (including humans) and capture the spirit of the landscape they inhabit.

Price : £150

Message in a Space Bottle

Poem by George Miller. 11 wood engravings by Bob Guy. 40 copies on Stockwell drawing cartridge. Bound in card with individual monoprint wrappers. First published in 2003. Second edition limited to 40 copies 2009. The poem reflects the global environmental crisis in the form of the last will and testament of an alien race found drifting in space – a message in a space bottle – describing how they were given a beautiful and abundant planet, and what became of it and them. A contemporary ‘Paradise Lost’.

Price : £20

Sweeny Agonistes

Graphic novel by Bob Guy based on the Middle Irish romance Buile Suibhne (the Frenzy of Sweeny). The legend also appears as the subtext of Flann O’Brien’s 1939 novel At Swim Two Birds, and it is the surreal nature of this work which has provided the inspiration for this piece. While Sweeny is a fictional character, a pagan chief representing ancient customs, his adversary, Bishop Ronan, and the scribe, Bishop Moling, are historical figures: Moling, also known as Mullin, is said to have come to Wales, where he is known as Myllin. St. Myllin’s Well, above Llanfyllin town in rural Montgomeryshire, is ascribed to him. Following O’Brien’s example, the Sweeny of Sweeny Agonistes, in his bird-like state, is not restricted by time or space: the middle section sees him dropping into the late twentieth century following an accident with a Union Jack in Ulster, and depicts his subsequent adventures with a group of entrepreneurs. This section is in comic book format. Childe Roland has contributed a contemporary reading of the themes of Sweeny in the form of two poems, one is Welsh the other in English, which form an appendix to the book.

Price : £60

A Pretty Good Alphabet

An alphabet illustrated with printing blocks old and new: some over 100 years old and others new reproductions of classic designs from around the 1950s. Designed, printed and bound by Jessie Miller. Hand printed canvas covers.

Price : Out of Print

Seven Pastorals

Poems by George Miller printed on Velin Arches handmade paper, with a cover designed and printed by Sara Philpott. Limited to 36 copies. Poems about girls, gods, puppies and other mysteries, in a rural setting. (2015)

Price : £30

Poems in Plantin

Selected poems 1980-2013 by George Miller, printed in Monotype Plantin cast by the author, on Magnani broad laid paper. Bound in quarter convexa cloth, hand decorated covers in an edition limited to 35 copies. Twenty two poems on different subjects. (2013)

Price : £30

Who Says Money Doesn’t Grow on Trees?

A story by George Miller with line illustrations by Carys Sanders. Limited to 40 copies, 1-20 on Zerkall laid, 21-40 on Simili Japon. Printed from type cast at the press. Monoprint card wrapper, silk sewn, with printed label. An improbable tale about the origin and tyranny of money. (2012)

Price : £25

Roads, Rivers Hills and the Sea

Poems and title illustration by George Miller. Limited to 40 copies. Printed on Hahnemuhle laid paper, type keyed and cast on the Monotype composition caster by the author, under the supervision of David Bolton, at the Alembic Press, Marcham. Printed and bound at the Hedge Sparrow Press. Card covers with paper wrapper, each one a unique painting relating to the title. Consists of ten sonnets on landscape themes. (2012)

Price : £30

A Lessening

Twenty seven poems by George Miller, with a woodcut illustration by Alan May. Limited to 45 copies printed October 2007. Some in quarter leather and some in hand printed wrappers. “The wood engraver starts with solid black, and cuts lines and areas in the surface with sharp tools to print white, and so makes an image from darkness and light.” (foreword) Poems written in a period of recovery from depression.

Price : Out of Print