The Archipelago on Fire

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Mark R. Harris

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May 8, 2021, 4:05:41 PMMay 8
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Hello all! I am choosing one of the lesser-known Verne novels to query about here, in order to get a sense of my reading options. Of course the variables will be different in the case of each novel, but let’s try The Archipelago on Fire. 

I see from the Arthur B. Evans bibliography that there were two translations, Munro (US) 1885 and Sampson Low (UK) 1885. Hard copies of these editions are very expensive. I.O. Evans didn’t reprint (abridge, edit) this novel in his Verne series.

As far as I can see, neither of these translations is available in ebook form at Project Gutenberg, Internet Archive, HathiTrust, Google Play Books, or other ebook sites. But I would love to be corrected on that! 

There have been one or two print-on-demand editions, maybe of one or both of these translations, maybe of a new computer-generated translation. I am very skeptical of POD in general. 

Finally, there is a newer translation (Islands on Fire) by Chris Amies that is available quite reasonably as a Kindle ebook. Has anyone checked this out? 

Are there options that I am not aware of? 

James Keeline

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May 8, 2021, 5:21:40 PMMay 8
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I have this Sampson Low copy.  It is about 200 pages and I can scan it with my CZUR Aura book scanner.  I have not set up a scanning station since our move but have a growing stack of books and magazines I want to scan so it should be something to do in the next week or so.  The work to scan a book like this is a two hour investment.  It is one of the titles that I have noticed is not readily available as a PDF.



James D. Keeline
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Tom Swift:  Tom Swift Guide to Life
 * Tom Swift Ked's Book Reprints *
Stratemeyer: * Victor Horton's Idea * Holiday Stories for Boys * Beyond the Edge of the World * Building the Line (soon) *
Reference: Stratemeyer Syndicate Ghostwriters (soon) *
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Mark R. Harris

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May 8, 2021, 5:26:18 PMMay 8
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Wow, that would be beyond decent of you, and I am sure would be much appreciated by others as well. 

I am still quite curious also about this new Chris Amies translation, which maybe has flown under the radar? 

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James Keeline

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May 8, 2021, 5:43:57 PMMay 8
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It depends on when it was done.  Evans' list is from 2005 so it is entirely possible that it did not exist then.  Plus, there are so many publishers taking public domain texts and publishing them (while attaching a new date on them that Google and others treat like a fresh copyright) that it is not practical to buy them all just to look at the copies.

Print on Demand can be great, mediocre, or terrible depending on who is doing it.  Back in 2010 we started some PoD efforts by taking the first five Tom Swift books and issuing them in a format that resembles a rare 1932 pulp paperback edition of the first two books.  We did this for the 100th anniversary of the series and a convention we hosted.  We found that the Project Gutenberg texts were full of typographical errors which we discovered by taking our vintage copies and reading through them carefully before sending them off the Lulu for publication.  Each volume had hundreds of errors that we corrected for our copies.  We also added an appendix chapter of the collectibles that exist for all of the generations of Tom Swift.  The books were favorably received by the series book community but our sales have long been minimal.

We have also issued first book editions of Edward Stratemeyer books.  These have copious notes, vintage illustrations, and extensive introductions.  This is different than the usual process of grabbing a free text somewhere, generating a PDF, and making it available as an eBook or PoD book.

Inline image


Anyone can try to publish anything (until they get caught if they are not entitled to do so).  There's no real review system to evaluate the various PoD copies.

After the weekend I will see about setting up my scanning workstation.  I have both of these devices but the top one, the CZUR Aura is the main one I use:

Inline image

One of the advantages of the CZUR Aura over their Shine Ultra (bottom) is that the Aura projects three laser lines to help the software flatten the images of pages.  The Shine Ultra tries to do this with the edges of the pages but this often does not work as well.  The camera is a little better and it is powered from the USB which are both nice features but not enough to deal with the lack of laser lines.

Inline image



James D. Keeline
_____

http://www.Keeline.com

Tom Swift:  Tom Swift Guide to Life
 * Tom Swift Ked's Book Reprints *
Stratemeyer: * Victor Horton's Idea * Holiday Stories for Boys * Beyond the Edge of the World * Building the Line (soon) *
Reference: Stratemeyer Syndicate Ghostwriters (soon) *
http://www.lulu.com/spotlight/24PalmerStreet

Mark R. Harris

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May 8, 2021, 5:58:03 PMMay 8
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All extremely fascinating information! 

I see that the Amies translation is quite new, having been made available as a Kindle text on January 11 of this year. So probably hardly anyone in the Verne community has had a chance to assess it or even to become aware of it. 

Chris Moser

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May 8, 2021, 7:53:29 PMMay 8
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I have an early version of the Sampson Low translation...but I'll admit its probably been 25 years since I read the book...not exactly one of Verne's better works...

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Mark R. Harris

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May 8, 2021, 8:04:45 PMMay 8
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Probably not, but in every context I have an especial affection for the “neglected children”, so I am sure I will read this with pleasure. 

Background: 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea was the first adult novel I read, the summer between first and second grades at the age of 6/7. Yes, I was a precocious kid! My mom had to get special permission for me to have an adult library card a couple of years later at age 9. 

The library did not have a copy of I.O. Evans’ Jules Verne and His Work, which I somehow had found a reference to, so my mom ordered it for me. And its thorough examination of all those “lesser” titles got me started on the romance of  literary history and on completism. 

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Chris Moser

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May 8, 2021, 8:10:08 PMMay 8
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There is a reprint on sale on eBay for £11 right now 

Mark R. Harris

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May 8, 2021, 8:16:12 PMMay 8
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POD of questionable quality according to Amazon reviewers, if it is the same one. The upcoming scan of the Sampson Low ought to serve me! And probably that Amies translation too, for comparison (only $3.99 USD). 

Andrew Nash

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May 11, 2021, 2:16:27 AMMay 11
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FYI

The Kindle edition called:

Delphi Complete Works of Jules Verne (Illustrated) Kindle Edition

 

https://www.amazon.ca/dp/B006IGU7J4/?coliid=I3OA4BADZZIGW7&colid=3VNQGHCK6XSC3&psc=0&ref_=lv_ov_lig_dp_it_im

 

for $2.99 CDN has Archipelago on Fire, and it is the George Munro translation
Which opens:  On the 18th of October, 1827, about five o’clock in the evening…….

(art evans does not seem to give a thumbs up to either Munro, or Sampson Low translations)

 

In the Kindle edition, in the first 4 chapters, there are 2 illustrations and the Fronticepiece.

 

.. Andrew Nash

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Mark R. Harris

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May 11, 2021, 9:20:37 AMMay 11
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Wow, I did not even realize there was a Delphi Jules Verne, thank you so much! Those Delphis, of which I have a number, are mighty big files. Probably the best way to assemble many of the otherwise unreprinted late 19C Verne translations. 

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Ron Miller

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May 11, 2021, 10:14:46 AMMay 11
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The Delphi collection was new to me (and has just been downloaded).
I presume from what I have seen that it consists of public domain texts?
R
 
http://www.black-cat-studios.com email: spac...@embarqmail.com 1407 Peach Ave. South Boston, VA 24592 434-517-9973



From: Andrew <an...@julesverne.ca>
To: jules-verne-forum <jules-ve...@googlegroups.com>
Date: Tuesday, 11 May 2021 2:16 AM EDT
Subject: RE: [JVF] The Archipelago on Fire

Mark R. Harris

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May 11, 2021, 10:24:04 AMMay 11
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Yes, as far as I know Delphi only handles public domain material. Their author collections are massive and frequently contain items that are hard to come by elsewhere. For example, I am currently using Delphi to read Samuel Richardson’s rare sequel to Pamela, Pamela in Her Exalted Condition. 

Delphi also features many offbeat authors you would not expect to find - how about a complete Captain Marryat? The texts are clean in my experience and contain few errors, unlike some public domain ebooks. 

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James Keeline

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May 11, 2021, 12:02:36 PMMay 11
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I was going through my collection of the I.O. Evans edited/translated/abridged volumes in the Fitzroy edition.  I found that there are 8 that I lack in this format still.  Most of mine are U.S. Associated Booksellers in hardcover with DJ.  I also have the Ace paperbacks and one or two of the Arco with DJ editions.  The cover art does not particularly appeal to me but I know that if I want to read a streamlined version of the story that these are here.  Also, for a few titles these are the first English translation and perhaps the only one.

V005 Among the Cannibals
V009 Measuring a Meridian
V016 Homeward Bound
V032 The Flight to France
V010 Sun in Eclipse
V010 Thorugh the Behring Strait
V011 Around the World in Eighty Days
V022 Down the Amazon

Inline image



It is interesting to see which volumes had not been published by them.  Probably the momentum of the series dropped before they could get around to them.

V018 Dick Sands
V025 Keraban the Inflexible
V026 Archipelago on Fire
V028 Mathias Sandorf
V031 A Lottery Ticket
V040 Claudius Bombarnac
V041 Foundling Mick
V042 Captain Antifer
V045 Clovis Dardentor
V047 The Superb Orinoco
V048 The Will of an Eccentric
V049 The Castaways of the Flag & Their Island Home
V052 The Kip Brothers
V056 The Invasion of the Sea

On some of these there was a vintage translation.  Others have only been translated to English in recent years.  Some of the books were subject to extensive rewrites by Michel Verne and are only in the past decade or two being published in translations of Jules Verne's text from the extant manuscripts.  It has been satisfying to get some of the modern reprints for books which are very scarce or do not exist in vintage reprints.  I am particularly pleased to have the efforts of modern dedicated Vernians who have translated anew or for the first time some of these books.


I decided to grab the Delphi Kindle edition.  Since there are more than 47 Verne novels, I am dubious of the "Complete" designation.  This sort of claim is made by a lot of eBook publishers when all it really means is "all the texts they could get their hands on."  Wildside Press does some Verne editions and sometimes makes this kind of claim for some of their author "Mega Packs".

On the whole, though, for eBook formats I prefer a PDF with page images so I can enjoy the vintage typesetting and illustrations.  This is part of the experience for me and having something retypeset in a Kindle font doesn't quite draw me in.

James D. Keeline


Mark R. Harris

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May 11, 2021, 12:15:22 PMMay 11
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I believe the Delphi edition has 47 novels in English, and another 16 in French for which the only English texts available are currently under copyright or present other issues. So I count 63 novels in their omnibus (including all the problematic posthumous ones), plus the Dr. Ox and Yesterday and Tomorrow short story volumes, and another seven “loose” short fictions. 

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Andrew Nash

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May 11, 2021, 1:34:13 PMMay 11
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Delphi, does try to indicate WHAT their translation is.

… ie Mercier Lewis (boooo), N d’Anvers, Anonymous

 

Yes, all public domain. Plenty of images sprinkled through.. movie posters, book covers

Images from Verne’s life.

Not all accurate…. They show Verne’s house in Amiens and says “Verne’s birthplace, Nantes”

So not totally accurate.

 

All in all, a handy collection to have.

 

I started to go through it, and it includes translations by:

Lackland, A Malleson, Lewis Mercier, Elen Frewer, N D’Anvers, George M Towle

 

One weird error I found, was: Wreck of the Chancellor, trans. George M Towle, but the date, in the first sentence or 2 is 1898, instead of 1869. That’s a weird mistake.

 

The other digital English collection I picked up, did not include Archipelago on Fire

… Andrew

Chris Moser

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May 14, 2021, 7:29:50 PMMay 14
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James...I've ended up with several duplicates of Evans translations...I'll check against your list and let you know.

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James Keeline

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May 14, 2021, 8:14:45 PMMay 14
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I have a couple duplicates from the series as well.

James D. Keeline

James Keeline

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Jun 15, 2021, 1:23:10 AMJun 15
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In the past week I have found space to set up my CZUR Aura book scanner that I showed and described previously in this thread.  I scanned my Pears Soap copy of The Archipelago on Fire and a few other Verne works that are not available in PDFs with page images so far as I can find online.  There are some print-on-demand or modern reprints, of course, but it is interesting to have a work that can be searched among others.



Although the text of the Donohue edition of The Lottery Ticket has been transcribed on Project Gutenberg, here is a scan of the pages from my copy.  I did not include the non-Verne filler pages.



Two of the Watt titles are available online (Lighthouse at the End of the World and The Castaways of the Flag) but Their Island Home has not yet been scanned.  Here is my copy with a partial dust jacket.





Finally, I did not find a copy of The Family Without a Name so I scanned the extremely fragile Seaside Library Pocket edition.  The pulp paper is very brown and brittle.  I have a later edition of this story but have not compared the opening lines to see if it is the same translation




There are still some gaps and translator variants to find or make.  Because my DropBox space is limited, these will be available for a short period of time.  I'm sure you understand.  Kindly keep it within the community and don't post to places like Archive.org without consulting me.  Each of these scans takes about 2-3 hours of photography, clean-up, PDF generation, and OCR.

Perhaps someone here can help fill in some of the gaps that are not available in PDF with page image formats.  We can discuss what is available or missing if there is interest.

James D. Keeline

Mark R. Harris

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Jun 15, 2021, 2:59:47 AMJun 15
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Thank you so much for your hard work! I for one certainly appreciate it greatly. 

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RFOG

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Jun 15, 2021, 3:02:59 AMJun 15
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Interesting.

James, I have a question for you: is this the quality of the photography done by the scanner, or you post-processed and downgraded the image quality? I ask this because I use an old PlustTek OptiBook scanner (flatbed, but window is sided to allow book scan) but it is very slow and tiresome to scan books with it, plus risk of breaking the spine. It is not the first time I had one of those in the basket to purchase it, but some information about the quality of photo refrains me to purchase it. Could you please share some original photos with me?

All, the next link is a dropbox read-only space to store things like James books (James, your books are here, you can remove yours):

I will maintain that link open for all of you and you can send me things to put there if you want for all of us. Please, don't share the link because DropBox, if detects media inside a frequently accessed folder, blocks access due f*cking copyright infringement without looking at what's inside.

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Andrew Nash

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Jun 15, 2021, 10:15:00 AMJun 15
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Wow.. excellent James.

Andrew

 

From: jules-ve...@googlegroups.com <jules-ve...@googlegroups.com> On Behalf Of James Keeline
Sent: June 15, 2021 1:23 AM
To: jules-ve...@googlegroups.com
Subject: Re: [JVF] The Archipelago on Fire

 

In the past week I have found space to set up my CZUR Aura book scanner that I showed and described previously in this thread.  I scanned my Pears Soap copy of The Archipelago on Fire and a few other Verne works that are not available in PDFs with page images so far as I can find online.  There are some print-on-demand or modern reprints, of course, but it is interesting to have a work that can be searched among others.

 

 

 


1888-Verne-The_Archipelago_on_Fire-SampsonLow-Pears.pdf

Shared with Dropbox

 

Although the text of the Donohue edition of The Lottery Ticket has been transcribed on Project Gutenberg, here is a scan of the pages from my copy.  I did not include the non-Verne filler pages.

 

 

 


1887,1901-Verne-Lottery_Ticket_No_9672-Donohue.pdf

Shared with Dropbox

 

Two of the Watt titles are available online (Lighthouse at the End of the World and The Castaways of the Flag) but Their Island Home has not yet been scanned.  Here is my copy with a partial dust jacket.

 

 

 

 


1924-Verne-v1-Their_Island_Home-The_Later_Adventures_of_the_Swiss_Family...

Shared with Dropbox

 

 

Finally, I did not find a copy of The Family Without a Name so I scanned the extremely fragile Seaside Library Pocket edition.  The pulp paper is very brown and brittle.  I have a later edition of this story but have not compared the opening lines to see if it is the same translation

 

 

 


1889-Verne-The_Family_Without_a_Name-c3.pdf

Shared with Dropbox

 

 

There are still some gaps and translator variants to find or make.  Because my DropBox space is limited, these will be available for a short period of time.  I'm sure you understand.  Kindly keep it within the community and don't post to places like Archive.org without consulting me.  Each of these scans takes about 2-3 hours of photography, clean-up, PDF generation, and OCR.

 

Perhaps someone here can help fill in some of the gaps that are not available in PDF with page image formats.  We can discuss what is available or missing if there is interest.

 

James D. Keeline

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James Keeline

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Jun 15, 2021, 6:16:46 PMJun 15
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Scanning equipment varies in feature, image quality, speed, and price.  I have used many different ways to get page images into a computer over the past 20 or more years.

A typical flatbed scanner has some of the disadvantages you mention such as having to press a book flat against the glass which would badly damage a fragile book like the Seaside Library Pocket Edition of The Family Without a Name.  These thick pulp paperbacks are not suited for being pressed flat without breaking the binding and fracturing the brittle pages.

Additionally, a flatbed scanner exchanges resolution for speed.  You can get a high resolution scan but many can take 30-60 seconds per page spread.  You need to position the item, start the scan, wait, and then repeat for the next page spread.  If the whole process takes 60 seconds per page spread, a 300-page book can take 150 minutes or 2.5 hours to scan.  This is an extraordinary investment compared with other methods I have used.  Even after the image capture is done, there is post processing to crop and clean up the images before making the PDF with OCR.  On most workflows, the post processing can take more time than the initial image capture process.

No matter how much a book is pressed to the glass, there is going to be a curvature of the image near the gutter of the page when a flatbed scanner is used.  Fixing this in Photoshop is difficult when it is possible and sometimes it is not.  It takes a good deal of time per page.  Even if that is just one minute per page, there's another 5 hours for a 300-page book.  Now we are looking at up to 8 hours of unpaid work to scan a single book.

A method I have used in the past to minimize the curvature at the gutter and speed up the image capture is similar to this Instructable on the Cardboard Box Book Scanner:



A camera on a tripod with a remote shutter control captures an image of a page on one side of a spread.  The page is held down with glass or plastic and illuminated by the lamp.  Moving the glass for each page turn and going through the book twice is tedious.  Also it is hard to align the camera for a square image of the page.  Otherwise one needs to do a lot of post processing with Photoshop to square and crop the pages.  I have used a method along this line for thousands of page images.  Often I forego the glass and use a letter opener or chopstick to hold the edge of a page that wants to move out of position.  The camera is much faster than a scanner.  

The resolution of the resulting image varies according to the megapixel rating of the camera.  If a page has a 4:3 aspect ratio and is 8x6 inches and you want to get something equivalent to 300 dots per inch, that would be an image size of  which is 2,400x1,800 pixels or 4.3 megapixels.  If you are going a two-page spread, it is double this.  That is possible with conventional cameras.  When you start wanting to increase to 600 dpi or greater, suddenly you are looking at extremely expensive cameras and very large data files.

It is challenging to get consistent lighting and exposure with the cardboard box setup.


A method I have not tried because of the size of the rig and the expense of having two high-quality digital cameras is one of the many designs described on:



This is a group of people interested in scanning books and developing apparatus and software to achieve this.  Some designs can be built with relatively simple tools.  Others work from kits.  Some require advanced fabrication skills in the materials used.


There are expensive professional scanners that are purchased by libraries and similar institutions.  These machines cost from US$5,000-$10,000 and go up from there.  I have used some of these in libraries when it was the only way to get something imaged and the item could not be removed from the special collection reading room.  Despite their expense, the machines of this class I have used or read about do not have software that can flatten the page image.  I've already mentioned that this is a time-consuming part of the processing of a book.


The two book scanners that I own are both made by a Chinese company called CZUR.  They were IndieGoGo crowd-funding campaigns.  When the campaign was over, participants had to wait many months for the scanners to be manufactured and delivered.  The Aura took about 9 months and arrived in 2019.  The Shine Ultra took about 11 months and arrived amid COVID in 2020.  Many contributors to the campaign were very frustrated by the time the scanners arrived.  Now that they are made, ordering one of the past models is about like ordering any product from overseas in terms of delivery time.  The cost for these scanners was attractive.  I want to say that the Aura was around US$350 and the Shine Ultra was around US$250.

Inline image


There are some significant differences between the models.  The Shine Ultra has a higher-resolution camera and can be powered from USB.  It is very portable and could be taken to a library if they would allow it.  However, there are other considerations which cause me to use the Aura as my primary scanner for books at home.

The banner feature for these scanners is the ability to detect the page curvature and use that information to flatten the image (as best as it can).  The Aura achieves this by projecting three laser lines on the page spread.  This is fairly effective.  The Shine Ultra tries to do the same by detecting the edges of the pages.  This does not work as well.  It does not use lasers.

Despite software written in 2020, these scanners have programs that are a bit clunky to use at times.  There is no project save and if the program hangs, you can lose a lot of work.  This occurred on a scan of another Verne book, Clovis Dardentor, which itself (on this copy) is a collection of bound photocopies.  The text is clear but the illustrations will have to be replaced but I have access to those.  The program also does not have an "undo" feature (except for a trick) and many repetitive tasks require a lot of mouse travel to get things done.  Keyboard equivalents for buttons and other mouse clicks are simply not present so your fingers get a workout in processing a 300-page book.  With some experience, most frustrations can be minimized.  Some quirks can be better understood with experience.  For example, if a page spread is too flat, it will not detect the center line (gutter) well and this is a bit tedious to fix, especially when it must be done to multiple page spreads.

Image capture of a book is usually around 5-10 seconds per page spread.  With 150 page spreads in a 300-page book, that is roughly 25 minutes or more to photograph a 300-page book.  The total amount of time depends on how much time is taken to turn pages and confirm the positioning and retakes if something does not come out well.

Despite the image flattening, which works better than most other methods, there is still some post processing that must be done.  This includes realigning the center line on the gutter because it did not detect it accurately.  Pages must also be cropped if you don't want extra-wide images that show the fore-edge of the pages.  It is also possible to change color images to grayscale and save as individual images or build a PDF.  Do not try to use their OCR in the CZUR program.  It is exceptionally slow and there are other faster methods.

The camera in the CZUR Aura is OK but not great.  It can generally image up to 11x17 inches or European A2 paper.  The camera produces images of up to 4320x3240 pixels (about 14 megapixels with an effective 240 dpi).  So, while it is not as great as a flatbed scanner, it is faster, has curve flattening, built-in lighting, a foot-pedal control, and is generally easier to use.  For the purpose of reading a PDF, these specifications are pretty good.  It is possible to get good OCR from them which is good enough for word search but not for making text files as would be used on Gutenberg or the Kindle.

There are four books mentioned in my previous email.  I don't know which one(s) you referred to when you asked about the image quality.

The Archipelago on Fire came out pretty well.  The page images replicate the color of the physical book.  On this one I cropped the pages in the CZUR software and built a PDF in the program.  I then used Adobe Acrobat Pro (DCC) for the OCR processing.  (I have other methods of OCR which can be faster but that is a topic for another email).  In Acrobat Pro I used the "optimize" feature to bring the PDF file size down to a reasonable level (32 MB).  This probably has the effect of reducing the page image resolution.  Before this the PDF was very large, around 160 MB but there was not a significant difference in the appearance of the page images or their clarity.  This book is comparable to PDFs found on sites like Google Books, HathiTrust.org, or Archive.org.  There are some with larger files but usually not much greater image quality for the titles they offer.

Ticket No. 9672 (aka The Lottery Ticket) is from a 1910s copy of the book, the first hardcover edition, on medium-quality paper.  After cropping in CZUR, I built a PDF there, did OCR in Acrobat Pro, and optimized the file to retain as much of the image quality as possible but reduce the file size to something practical.  As noted, I did not scan the filler pages which the publisher used to bulk out the book.

Their Island Home was scanned from the first U.S. printing with the partial dust jacket.  The page colors were retained on this one.  The same methods as above were used.  Other Watt titles by Verne are available online so I did not scan my copies.

The Family Without a Name was a real challenge because of the darkened pulp paper that has become stiff and brittle.  Getting images of the page spreads without damaging the book was challenging.  I'm sure some deterioration occurred but hopefully not much more than a careful reading of the book.  Since the pages were so dark, I decided to use ScanTailor Advanced to process the pages further.  The main effect of this was to clear out margins and make the pages black text on a white background.  The printing and paper quality was rather limited so this may have page image quality issues that are more to do with the source book than the scanner or post processing.

Inline image


With these methods, the average times per book was 2.0-2.5 hours.

You mention methods of transforming the page images into facsimiles in a word processor or page layout program.  I have not been very satisfied with the process or the results of this.  The time required is sometimes similar to a fast typist re-entering the text because so many errors are introduced from the old printed copies.  It is not the same as the kind of quality you can get from taking a newly-printed document, scanning it, and effectively reverse-engineering it back to a word processor / page layout document.  I have some books (not Verne) that are done in this fashion and sometimes they are very good, especially with the same typefaces are used as on the original.  That is not my goal at this time.  If I wanted books like that, I might go to Gutenberg, download the HTML or text files they provide and do my own page layout.  

In 2010 when I worked with the first five Tom Swift Sr. books to make reprints for the 100th anniversary convention that we hosted, we found that each Gutenberg text required about 5 hours for two people to proofread and correct.  One had a vintage copy of the book as we pored over the Gutenberg text.  For these we imitated a special edition of 1932 called the Keds books.  At that time there were just two volumes produced.  We published all five of the 1910 stories in this format on better paper but otherwise quite similar to the vintage copies.  We added a chapter about the range of Tom Swift collectibles available to that point, including some unique items we found along the way.

I have folders for each Verne work and have gathered PDFs for as many as possible.  In some cases it would be nice to add some of the variant translations which don't seem to be available.  Some of the books for which I have no PDF (with page images) of a vintage copy include:

V032 1887 The Flight to France

V034 1889 Two Years Vacation - Adrift in the Pacific
— I have an abridged PDF from Sampson Low.

V035 1889 Topsy Turvy - The Purchase of the North Pole
— I have retyped copies from Gutenberg.

V041 1893 Foundling Mick

V043 1895 The Floating Island - Propeller Island 
— I have a copy of this to scan ( https://www.librarything.com/work/1066930/details/64512929 )

V045 1900 Clovis Dardentor 
— I have a copy of this to scan ( https://www.librarything.com/work/4207641/details/64283200 )

V047 1898 The Superb Orinoco

V048 1899 The Will of an Eccentric 
— I have a copy of this to scan ( https://www.librarything.com/work/1476742/details/64505033 ).  Possibly the text is the same as the Boys' Own Annual serial.

V050 1901 The Village in the Treetops 
— I don't think there is an English version before the Fitzroy edition.  I do have two PDFs of the French from Gallica.fr

V052 1902 The Kip Brothers

V053 1903 Scholarships for Travel

V055 1904 A Drama in Livonia

I don't recall the number but The Chase of the Golden Meteor is a vintage book that would be good to have.

Most others I have something for each title.  Some of these have only been recently translated.  I own these modern editions but not PDFs.

James D. Keeline
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http://www.Keeline.com

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Ariel Pérez Rodríguez

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Jun 16, 2021, 5:28:03 AMJun 16
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Thank you, James, for this detailed description of the scanning process.
As an addition, there are other software options besides those that come with the scanner.

ScanTailor is one software I've used consistently and that has been very effective in delivering results. The software is free and comes in a variety of flavors. Scan Tailor Advanced (https://github.com/4lex4/scantailor-advanced/releases) has proven to be one of the best solutions for this task. It fixes orientation, splits pages automatically (two-page scanning), deskews, dewraps, and has many other features.

As for scanning software, there is VueScan (https://www.hamrick.com/) that works very well and has a feature that allows you to scan continuously without touching the keyboard between each page.

Here are my two cents on the matter.

Best,
Ariel

On Tue, Jun 15, 2021 at 6:16 PM James Keeline <ja...@keeline.com> wrote:
Scanning equipment varies in feature, image quality, speed, and price.  I have used many different ways to get page images into a computer over the past 20 or more years.

A typical flatbed scanner has some of the disadvantages you mention such as having to press a book flat against the glass which would badly damage a fragile book like the Seaside Library Pocket Edition of The Family Without a Name.  These thick pulp paperbacks are not suited for being pressed flat without breaking the binding and fracturing the brittle pages.

Additionally, a flatbed scanner exchanges resolution for speed.  You can get a high resolution scan but many can take 30-60 seconds per page spread.  You need to position the item, start the scan, wait, and then repeat for the next page spread.  If the whole process takes 60 seconds per page spread, a 300-page book can take 150 minutes or 2.5 hours to scan.  This is an extraordinary investment compared with other methods I have used.  Even after the image capture is done, there is post processing to crop and clean up the images before making the PDF with OCR.  On most workflows, the post processing can take more time than the initial image capture process.

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Rafael Ontivero

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Jun 16, 2021, 6:18:04 AMJun 16
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Wow, James, very complete answer!!

In relation to the flatbed scanner I have, yes, it is very tedious but I use a software from the manufacturer that improves the scanning process. My scanner is this one (older version): 
Plustek OpticBook 3800L Boekscanner A4 1.200 x 1.200 dpi USB 2.0

You see four buttons. Blue is for color scan, gray is for BW scan, and black is for preview. Once removed the anti-book copy protection (it is a little bit kafkian that a scanner to scan books has a anti-book copy protection), that basically is install the PRO version driver instead the one that comes with the scanner, you run the book scanner app and then you can auto-crop, auto-correct the curvature, that it does almost nothing.

The resulting of the scan should be a cropped stuff, in JPG/TIFF or in a PDF. I use JPG because PDF uses compression. Not having to crop, rotate, etc saves a lot of time. Once I get the JPG, I drop in Abbyy and generate the PDF with MRC compression and OCR. 

However, with this scanner, it takes about 30-40 minutes to scan the book a 200 pages book in double page mode, about 1 hour for a normal 300 pages book page by page. As you say, you can automate the hand process and listen music or an audiobook. Page in scanner, press blue button, wait, turn around, press blue button, pass page, put in scanner, press blue button…

After that, drop files in Abbyy and let it do the magic. Auto rotates, divide pages, OCR. This takes about 2 minutes for a 300 page book in my i7 6 cores laptop. 

What I use for other books I cannot put in scanner, like old Jubera and Roig, is use my iPhone camera with Scanner Pro app from Readdle. It auto-crops and pre-process the image, removing the “photo” sensation. Process is very fast, and does not have focus issues (for example, in Android, all scanner apps has different focus depending on the part of the page). 

I started with a similar solution like the cardboard box and a tripod, but latests iPhones + Scanner Pro does not need anything and I do with the phone in one hand and passing pages with the other. Camera stabilization is very good.

Even I make first the photos with normal camera and then use Scanner Pro for the auto-crop, orientation and page correction.

El 16 jun 2021, a las 0:16, James Keeline <ja...@keeline.com> escribió:

Scanning equipment varies in feature, image quality, speed, and price.  I have used many different ways to get page images into a computer over the past 20 or more years.

A typical flatbed scanner has some of the disadvantages you mention such as having to press a book flat against the glass which would badly damage a fragile book like the Seaside Library Pocket Edition of The Family Without a Name.  These thick pulp paperbacks are not suited for being pressed flat without breaking the binding and fracturing the brittle pages.

Additionally, a flatbed scanner exchanges resolution for speed.  You can get a high resolution scan but many can take 30-60 seconds per page spread.  You need to position the item, start the scan, wait, and then repeat for the next page spread.  If the whole process takes 60 seconds per page spread, a 300-page book can take 150 minutes or 2.5 hours to scan.  This is an extraordinary investment compared with other methods I have used.  Even after the image capture is done, there is post processing to crop and clean up the images before making the PDF with OCR.  On most workflows, the post processing can take more time than the initial image capture process.

No matter how much a book is pressed to the glass, there is going to be a curvature of the image near the gutter of the page when a flatbed scanner is used.  Fixing this in Photoshop is difficult when it is possible and sometimes it is not.  It takes a good deal of time per page.  Even if that is just one minute per page, there's another 5 hours for a 300-page book.  Now we are looking at up to 8 hours of unpaid work to scan a single book.

A method I have used in the past to minimize the curvature at the gutter and speed up the image capture is similar to this Instructable on the Cardboard Box Book Scanner:



A camera on a tripod with a remote shutter control captures an image of a page on one side of a spread.  The page is held down with glass or plastic and illuminated by the lamp.  Moving the glass for each page turn and going through the book twice is tedious.  Also it is hard to align the camera for a square image of the page.  Otherwise one needs to do a lot of post processing with Photoshop to square and crop the pages.  I have used a method along this line for thousands of page images.  Often I forego the glass and use a letter opener or chopstick to hold the edge of a page that wants to move out of position.  The camera is much faster than a scanner.  

The resolution of the resulting image varies according to the megapixel rating of the camera.  If a page has a 4:3 aspect ratio and is 8x6 inches and you want to get something equivalent to 300 dots per inch, that would be an image size of  which is 2,400x1,800 pixels or 4.3 megapixels.  If you are going a two-page spread, it is double this.  That is possible with conventional cameras.  When you start wanting to increase to 600 dpi or greater, suddenly you are looking at extremely expensive cameras and very large data files.

It is challenging to get consistent lighting and exposure with the cardboard box setup.


A method I have not tried because of the size of the rig and the expense of having two high-quality digital cameras is one of the many designs described on:



This is a group of people interested in scanning books and developing apparatus and software to achieve this.  Some designs can be built with relatively simple tools.  Others work from kits.  Some require advanced fabrication skills in the materials used.


There are expensive professional scanners that are purchased by libraries and similar institutions.  These machines cost from US$5,000-$10,000 and go up from there.  I have used some of these in libraries when it was the only way to get something imaged and the item could not be removed from the special collection reading room.  Despite their expense, the machines of this class I have used or read about do not have software that can flatten the page image.  I've already mentioned that this is a time-consuming part of the processing of a book.


The two book scanners that I own are both made by a Chinese company called CZUR.  They were IndieGoGo crowd-funding campaigns.  When the campaign was over, participants had to wait many months for the scanners to be manufactured and delivered.  The Aura took about 9 months and arrived in 2019.  The Shine Ultra took about 11 months and arrived amid COVID in 2020.  Many contributors to the campaign were very frustrated by the time the scanners arrived.  Now that they are made, ordering one of the past models is about like ordering any product from overseas in terms of delivery time.  The cost for these scanners was attractive.  I want to say that the Aura was around US$350 and the Shine Ultra was around US$250.

<CZUR-Aura+Shine-Ultra.jpg>


There are some significant differences between the models.  The Shine Ultra has a higher-resolution camera and can be powered from USB.  It is very portable and could be taken to a library if they would allow it.  However, there are other considerations which cause me to use the Aura as my primary scanner for books at home.

The banner feature for these scanners is the ability to detect the page curvature and use that information to flatten the image (as best as it can).  The Aura achieves this by projecting three laser lines on the page spread.  This is fairly effective.  The Shine Ultra tries to do the same by detecting the edges of the pages.  This does not work as well.  It does not use lasers.

Despite software written in 2020, these scanners have programs that are a bit clunky to use at times.  There is no project save and if the program hangs, you can lose a lot of work.  This occurred on a scan of another Verne book, Clovis Dardentor, which itself (on this copy) is a collection of bound photocopies.  The text is clear but the illustrations will have to be replaced but I have access to those.  The program also does not have an "undo" feature (except for a trick) and many repetitive tasks require a lot of mouse travel to get things done.  Keyboard equivalents for buttons and other mouse clicks are simply not present so your fingers get a workout in processing a 300-page book.  With some experience, most frustrations can be minimized.  Some quirks can be better understood with experience.  For example, if a page spread is too flat, it will not detect the center line (gutter) well and this is a bit tedious to fix, especially when it must be done to multiple page spreads.

Image capture of a book is usually around 5-10 seconds per page spread.  With 150 page spreads in a 300-page book, that is roughly 25 minutes or more to photograph a 300-page book.  The total amount of time depends on how much time is taken to turn pages and confirm the positioning and retakes if something does not come out well.

Despite the image flattening, which works better than most other methods, there is still some post processing that must be done.  This includes realigning the center line on the gutter because it did not detect it accurately.  Pages must also be cropped if you don't want extra-wide images that show the fore-edge of the pages.  It is also possible to change color images to grayscale and save as individual images or build a PDF.  Do not try to use their OCR in the CZUR program.  It is exceptionally slow and there are other faster methods.

The camera in the CZUR Aura is OK but not great.  It can generally image up to 11x17 inches or European A2 paper.  The camera produces images of up to 4320x3240 pixels (about 14 megapixels with an effective 240 dpi).  So, while it is not as great as a flatbed scanner, it is faster, has curve flattening, built-in lighting, a foot-pedal control, and is generally easier to use.  For the purpose of reading a PDF, these specifications are pretty good.  It is possible to get good OCR from them which is good enough for word search but not for making text files as would be used on Gutenberg or the Kindle.

There are four books mentioned in my previous email.  I don't know which one(s) you referred to when you asked about the image quality.

The Archipelago on Fire came out pretty well.  The page images replicate the color of the physical book.  On this one I cropped the pages in the CZUR software and built a PDF in the program.  I then used Adobe Acrobat Pro (DCC) for the OCR processing.  (I have other methods of OCR which can be faster but that is a topic for another email).  In Acrobat Pro I used the "optimize" feature to bring the PDF file size down to a reasonable level (32 MB).  This probably has the effect of reducing the page image resolution.  Before this the PDF was very large, around 160 MB but there was not a significant difference in the appearance of the page images or their clarity.  This book is comparable to PDFs found on sites like Google Books, HathiTrust.org, or Archive.org.  There are some with larger files but usually not much greater image quality for the titles they offer.

Ticket No. 9672 (aka The Lottery Ticket) is from a 1910s copy of the book, the first hardcover edition, on medium-quality paper.  After cropping in CZUR, I built a PDF there, did OCR in Acrobat Pro, and optimized the file to retain as much of the image quality as possible but reduce the file size to something practical.  As noted, I did not scan the filler pages which the publisher used to bulk out the book.

Their Island Home was scanned from the first U.S. printing with the partial dust jacket.  The page colors were retained on this one.  The same methods as above were used.  Other Watt titles by Verne are available online so I did not scan my copies.

The Family Without a Name was a real challenge because of the darkened pulp paper that has become stiff and brittle.  Getting images of the page spreads without damaging the book was challenging.  I'm sure some deterioration occurred but hopefully not much more than a careful reading of the book.  Since the pages were so dark, I decided to use ScanTailor Advanced to process the pages further.  The main effect of this was to clear out margins and make the pages black text on a white background.  The printing and paper quality was rather limited so this may have page image quality issues that are more to do with the source book than the scanner or post processing.

<p008.png>

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James Keeline

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Jun 16, 2021, 11:20:59 AMJun 16
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In most cases JPEG also involves lossy compression.  It depends on the quality setting.  A DSLR camera will have little or no compression on its JPEG images.  But images placed on the web will have varying degrees of compression to reduce the file sizes for delivery.

Usually when a TIFF is handled, there is either no compression or the method is lossless which means that after the item is decompressed, it is digitally identical to the original.  Libraries and archives find that TIFF is their preferred standard.  Often, though, these images are quite large when they have color or gray scale palates.

The last flatbed I used was an HP 5590 and before that I had a couple Canon LiDE models (20 and 30 as I recall).  The latter were nice because they could be run from USB power and were small enough to be placed in a large laptop bag with the computer.  Manufacturers tend to drop driver support for older scanners.  VueScan can help with keeping legacy devices working and sometimes has features that the manufacturer's software lacks.  I use a MacBook Pro so the support for my platform is often shorter for devices like these than they may be for Windows.  It is also hard for me to find B-size (11x17 inch) scanners that will work with a Mac.  They are also large and my space is limited for this equipment.  The CZUR book scanners fold up nicely when they are not in use.

I'd like to see some examples of output from the software mentioned to see what is done about the curvature at the gutter of the book.  As I mentioned, this is the most time consuming to fix in the post processing stage so it is better to solve it at the image capture phase.

The CZUR models I have include a foot pedal to initiate a scan.  This is a big help in productivity, especially when you want both hands available to gently hold the book open and in correct position.

ScanTailor Advanced is the version I use for some post-processing (e.g. The Family Without a Name).  It is tricky to use sometimes but often I can devise a workflow that is effective for certain documents.  This includes working from 2-up page spread images.  It can split these into separate pages, do basic straightening, select the content, and cast the page to black on white and save as TIFF images.  I know the different versions of ScanTailor are popular among the DIYBookScanner.org group members and that is where I first learned of it, particularly because it would work on a Mac as well as other platforms.

Last night I completed a scan of my copy of The Floating Island (NY: W.L. Allison, [1895]) which has so many illustrations that the 382-page book had just under 500 pages in the complete version.  I didn't take a careful record of my time spent but it was in excess of 3 hours with the cropping in CZUR taking the most time.  I did this while we were watching TV so it was OK.  I started OCR in Acrobat Pro before going to sleep.  This book has a San Diego connection and since I lived near there for most of my life, it has extra interest.  The other Verne book with a San Diego connection is Mistress Branican.

I think that The Will of an Eccentric (London: Sampson Low, 1902) may be good enough to scan.  I have the serial from the Boys' Own Annual.  But sometimes it is useful to have multiple versions to see if there are differences from editing for the two formats.

In my other areas of interest, such as juvenile series books of the Tom Swift and Nancy Drew class, I have gathered or made hundreds of PDFs with page images.  When something is not available online, I will make a scan from my collection.  If it is public domain, it is easier to share it.  Otherwise I keep them for my own purposes.  One big use is searching the texts for words that refer to holidays or outdated things like an "autogyro" or an "automat."  In Facebook groups someone will ask every year if there are series that relate to a holiday like Halloween so it is interesting to find examples which are more than passing mentions.

On the Mac I can search in the Finder for words in documents for a particular folder.  However, each one has to be opened individually and the search repeated.  I have used EasyFind and it is pretty good but the preview of the PDF with QuickLook does not open to the page with a match.  I have used a command-line tool called pdfgrep which can search through PDFs and show the matching lines plus a few more around it with certain options.  This can be enough to tell if the context is substantial or just a passing reference (e.g. "looked like a Halloween costume").

Acrobat Pro is often inadequate for OCR.  It is a single-threaded program so it uses just one of the cores.  This MacBook Pro (16-inch 2019) has 2.6 GHz 6-Core Intel Core i7 and it seems a waste to have 5 of these idle during a long process like OCR.  I use a command-line script in Python called OCRmyPDF to perform this task much faster.  When it is running, the fans spin up and the processor meters show that every resource is in use.  The OCR process is considerably shorter.  Including some overhead, most books are done in about half the time that is possible in Acrobat "Pro".  A true professional program would include tools to use all resources and help with automation.  Instead, Adobe likes to charge large subscription fees for their suite of programs and software like Acrobat Pro don't get a lot of improvements.

Sometimes it is tricky to get all of the support dependencies installed for these command-line tools but now that I have them working, it is a matter of using them.  Since I work as a Linux system administrator and programmer, I am comfortable doing work at the Unix and Linux command lines.

James D. Keeline



Volker Dehs

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Jun 22, 2021, 3:53:33 PMJun 22
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Dear all,

    I’m glad to announce to you the forthcoming number 202 of the Bulletin de la Société Jules Verne, to be published in June.
    The 120 pages of this issue are essentially composed by texts by Jules Verne and some of his friends, compiled by the writer himself at the end of his life. Most of these prose fragments, poetry and piece settings are unpublished, others offer interesting variants of relatively unknown texts.
    Among these more than twenty documents you will find a scenario on the love between Spartacus and the slave Lysia, a fragment and two notes on A Priest in 1835, parodistic, scatological and religious poetry.
    The transcription, introduction and annotation have been realized by the redactional staff of the BSJV : Marie-Hélène Huet, Laurence Sudret, Jean-Louis Mongin and myself. Thanks to the Amiens Library for having authorized and facilitated this publication.
    For further information, please have a look on the site of the Société Jules Verne :

    You can order it without being member of the SJV, but it might be a nice occasion to rejoin the association!
    Best regards,
 
Volker
 
 
Chers tous,

    je suis heureux d’annoncer la publication prochaine du n° 202 du Bulletin de la Société Jules Verne, à paraître dans le courant de juin.
    Les 120 pages de ce numéro se composent presque exclusivement de textes de Jules Verne et quelques uns de ses amis, réunis par l’écrivain lui-même à la fin de sa vie. La plupart de ces fragments de prose, poésies et sénarios de pièces sont inédits, d’autres offrent d’intéressantes variantes de textes peu connus.
    Parmi cette vingtaine de documents, vous trouverez un scénario sur l’amour entre Spartacus et l’esclave Lysia, un fragment et deux notes relatives à Un prêtre en 1835, des poésies parodiques, scatologiques et religieuses.
    La transcription, l’introduction et l’annotation ont été assurées par des membres de la rédaction du BSJV : Mmes Marie-Hélène Huet et Laurence Sudret, M. Jean-Louis Mongin et moi-même. Merci aux Bibliothèques d’Amiens Métropole d’avoir autorisé et facilité cette publication.
    Pour d’autres informations, veuillez consulter le site de la Société Jules Verne :

    Vous pouvez commander le numéro sans être membre de la SJV, mais ce serait bien sûr une bonne occasion d’adhérer à l’association !
    Bien cordialement,
 
Volker
 
 
Couverture 202-BAT4.pdf

Volker Dehs

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Jun 22, 2021, 3:58:50 PMJun 22
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sorry, here is the correct link
pardon, voici le lien correct :
 
 
best, Volker
 
 
Gesendet: Dienstag, 22. Juni 2021 um 21:53 Uhr
Von: "Volker Dehs" <volke...@web.de>
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Betreff: [JVF] unpublished texts by JV, textes inédits
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Jan Rychlik

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Wow! As for Wallut’s “Muses” I think it was cited back in 70s or 80s even by a Czech or Slovak Verne biography (based on French sources) as a lost piece (by Verne, not Wallut of course).
Really the best invitation to (re)join the SJV!

22. 6. 2021 v 21:58, Volker Dehs <volke...@web.de>:



frangels

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Jun 23, 2021, 2:12:38 AMJun 23
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g‌rande impatience de lecteur !
 
De : "Volker Dehs"
A : jules-ve...@googlegroups.com
Envoyé: mardi 22 Juin 2021 21:53
Objet : [JVF] unpublished texts by JV, textes inédits

Chris Moser

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Jul 4, 2021, 12:13:02 PMJul 4
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