Posted: 27 May 2004 21:51
I saw a French version of the new book at the Tintin shop in March, and it will NOT have a similar interior - the page facsimiles that will be on the right hand side are much smaller, and at an angle, and frankly I was disappointed, as was a staff member from the Tintin shop that I talked to about it. This person didn't think much of it. The images don't fill the page and are harder to see. Well, I'm just glad it's coming out again in any form, although until I see it I won't believe that the entire English translation has been reprinted.
However I completely fail to understand why Moulinsart cannot simply place the translation/ dialogue on one side of the page, and the facsimile on the other, full size. I never understood why they couldn't do this in the original, but had to have that unwieldy booklet system which, as jock123 says, makes it more expensive. That's what I should have said really in my earlier post, that I would like to see an edition with dialogue on the left, facsimile pages full-size on the right, with no fiddly booklet, and with the facsimile pages NOT being reduced for some inexplicable reason. If you look at the reviews on Amazon.fr people are disappointed at the new edition (as much as i can understand French they seem to be).
I suspect Moulinsart want to make this edition unmissable for collectors by adding a couple of pages that weren't in the last editions, so we buy this one as well, and then eventually produce a third edition that contains absolutely everything in a deluxe format, which this new version certainly won't be. And we will buy that too. I don't mind, I'll buy anything Tintin, I just wish they'd hurry up with it!
Don't get me wrong, I'm glad they're giving us the extra material, and I'm happy to pay for it, but i think the new version as a whole is substandard. Still, I blame Egmont as well - no bookshop in my home town had it on order until I went round and banged the drum for it, although I have noticed new moon rocket book spinners appearing. The sliding launch date says something about their commitment to it too, although maybe they want it to coincide with the DVD rerelease next week (some hope that they're that coordinated!). No big launch, no publicity - contrast this with the hooplah around the reissued Asterix series. I attended the London Book Fair in March and there was a shameful lack of publicity for Alph-Art at the Egmont stand - one tiny picture in a trade catalogue that I had to find myself, no mock-up version, no posters, nothing. Maybe Moulinsart can't be bothered to cater for the English market because Egmont have so little faith in Tintin.
Anyway, Rastapopoulos - the edition I sold was a first edition in pristine condition but I was still shocked at what I got for it, although four years earlier I'd seen it going on ebay for Â£80. Jock123 was very lucky to get his last year for the standard price. Then again, I saw one the other week on ebay for Â£60, which I think is more like it.
As for my comments about alph-art, I do find it an interesting read, I was just trying to reassure people who haven't read it, and who don't have a lot of money to shell out for it, that they can live without it - it won't give them the kind of emotional charge they'll get from reading a brand new complete Tintin adventure for the first time ever, they'll get a more academic pleasure from it, like Rastapopoulos experienced. It won't change their lives or anything, it really isn't a lost masterpiece.