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Thread: US vs UK editions - do you prefer the edition produced in the author's home country?

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    US vs UK editions - do you prefer the edition produced in the author's home country?

    This may be a bit off-the-wall, but I've always preferred reading the US editions of books by US authors such as Stephen King. There's something about the Anglicized spelling of the UK editions that just doesn't feel quite right to me.

    I feel the same way about the Harry Potter books - I haven't read them, but if I did I would prefer to read the UK editions over the US editions.

    Is it just me?

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    Senior Member Ok, I really can't come up with anymore of these stupid things... srboone's Avatar
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    I can't say, I've never really thought about it. I've always read US editions...that I know of...

    Good ???, tho.
    "I'm a vegan. "

    ---Kirby Bliss Blanton , The Green Inferno (2013)

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    Senior Member Hearing Voices Tito_Villa's Avatar
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    The books should be printed in the language of the author, eg Stephen King is American so the books should be written in American english just as he intended, & the Harry Potter books are in English because thats what Mrs Romling is

    Though when collecting older books, i do prefer English ones as they do seem far rarer, like Carrie had a print run of 600 or so & The Stand of less than 1,000.

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    Senior Member 1st Electroshock Session TerryE's Avatar
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    I recently finished Joe Hill's Heart Shaped Box. I've been trying to get everything he puts out since I was able to start very early with his career. I must have the American version of the book packed away, because I quickly realised I was reading by British edition (it has nice colour endpapers). It didn't bother me too much, I've seen -our instead of -or for most of my life. But whenever I read mention of the tyres on Judas's car, that really threw me since it stuck out in my mind.

    I think the better question is why don't we all just agree on some standards on both sides of the pond and have everything read the same?
    "Dance until your feet hurt. Sing until your lungs hurt. Act until you're William Hurt." - Phil Dunphy ("Modern Family"), from Phil's-osophy.

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    Senior Member Hearing Voices Tito_Villa's Avatar
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    Yes lets agree that the English way is the best

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    Senior Member 2nd Rubber Room Confinement peteOcha's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tito_Villa View Post
    Yes lets agree that the English way is the best
    Never!

    But honestly, I guess I prefer AE, but then again it doesn't really matter all that much to me.

    But now that I think about, I have a few English(UK) editions of a couple SK books and I haven't noticed any changes as in color - colour (will have to check this at home, but I don't think they change those things. Would be a waste of time in my opinion.

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    Senior Member Hearing Voices Tito_Villa's Avatar
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    But colour is the right way of saying it, color just looks wrong

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    I've been in the US almost half my life and I still have to think about some of the spelling differences!

    As to rarity, are the UK editions of Stephen King books usually published after the US editions? Does that even matter, or do the smaller print runs make them more valuable to collectors?

    One book I wish I'd kept, but couldn't afford to at the time was the UK 1st printing of The Dark Half. I bought it at Waterstone's in Dublin, took it home and found out that close to 150 pages had been printed and bound twice, and the same number of pages were missing from my copy. I took it back the next day and exchanged it, but I should have kept it.

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    Senior Member Hearing Voices Tito_Villa's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dave1442397 View Post
    I've been in the US almost half my life and I still have to think about some of the spelling differences!

    As to rarity, are the UK editions of Stephen King books usually published after the US editions? Does that even matter, or do the smaller print runs make them more valuable to collectors?

    One book I wish I'd kept, but couldn't afford to at the time was the UK 1st printing of The Dark Half. I bought it at Waterstone's in Dublin, took it home and found out that close to 150 pages had been printed and bound twice, and the same number of pages were missing from my copy. I took it back the next day and exchanged it, but I should have kept it.
    The King books in the 70's early 80's were released at the same time as the US versions i think but with much smaller print runs (& most of them went to libraries i think). For example, a US Night Shift 1st edition had a print run of just 12,000 which makes it a very rare book but still you see quite a few copies turn up on ebay. The UK version however i have never seen on ebay, i don't know the print run but i bet its just a fraction of the 12,000 US copies. I would love a copy for my collection but i can only find one on the internet for $1,500 - LINK

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    Quote Originally Posted by Tito_Villa View Post
    The King books in the 70's early 80's were released at the same time as the US versions i think but with much smaller print runs (& most of them went to libraries i think). For example, a US Night Shift 1st edition had a print run of just 12,000 which makes it a very rare book but still you see quite a few copies turn up on ebay. The UK version however i have never seen on ebay, i don't know the print run but i bet its just a fraction of the 12,000 US copies. I would love a copy for my collection but i can only find one on the internet for $1,500 - LINK
    I remember reading a copy of Night Shift with that cover. It was from the Malahide Library in Co. Dublin. I wonder if they still have it? I'm sure it's pretty tatty even if they do.

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    Senior Member Ok, I really can't come up with anymore of these stupid things... srboone's Avatar
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    I have both an AMerican and an English copy of Mother London by Michael Moorcock and the words "colour" and "armour" appear in both.

    I guess I always thought the British needed the extra letter to help them sound out the word...
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    Senior Member Starting to Drool Incessantly frik51's Avatar
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    As a rule, I buy both the US and Uk editions of King's new releases. He's the only author who gets this special treatment.
    I usually read the book I receive first - I don't really have a preference for either.

    sk

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    Quote Originally Posted by srboone View Post

    I guess I always thought the British needed the extra letter to help them sound out the word...
    And here I was thinking it was just you Americans being too lazy to put them in

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    Senior Member Ok, I really can't come up with anymore of these stupid things... srboone's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by PaulB View Post


    And here I was thinking it was just you Americans being too lazy to put them in
    Linguistic Economics!!!
    "I'm a vegan. "

    ---Kirby Bliss Blanton , The Green Inferno (2013)

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    Quote Originally Posted by srboone View Post
    Linguistic Economics!!!
    Very nice! Like that term.

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    I realize this wasn't the thrust of your original post, but the UK editions sometimes surpass that of their US counterparts. The limited of Under the Dome is a prime example. The S&S edition was, well, to put it politely, a bit of a letdown given its high $200 MSRP. For example, many of us thought it would at least come with a ho-hum slipcase based on some publicity wording of features, but nope, nada, nothing. And the signature page was just that - a flatsigned signature page with no limitation information (in reality, it was limited to 1,500 copies). Whereas the Hodder & Stoughton edition (through Waterstone's) was superior at roughly the same price (100) - all the features of the S&S edition except for a dustjacket and belly band, but with a great slipcase and an actual limitation page (S/N of 500). I eventually wound-up purchasing a third-party slipcase from The Collector, but, of course, would rather S&S had manufactured one of their own. The huge downside to the H&S edition was the criminally negligent packing job Waterstone's did, which resulted in quite a few damaged copies for US buyers. Mine was literally falling out of the box when it was delivered, but against all odds arrived intact.

    Anyway, just something to consider if you're into collecting King limiteds (or any limiteds, for that matter).
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    Senior Member Receiving Daily Medication theenormityofitall's Avatar
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    One thing about UK editions, is that the cover art is almost always better no matter who the author is. And of course, the lower print run should make it more valuable, especially if it's the world's first edition. Having said that though, a man that is a very famous bookstore seller of all things King, told me the other day via email, that King signed US editions are more valuable than UK signed editions

    His exact words:
    sometimes there are fewer signed regular trade editions than limited editions. And UK books usually are always worth less than those in the US. The UK Bag of Bones (numbered 1-2000) can be found for $125-$140 if you look hard enough. A regular signed US trade edition still sells for more than that.


    The fewer signed versions should be worth more than a lot of limiteds because almost anyone can get one of those if they want one bad enough. The flatsigned trades often times cost more than actual limited editions. Bag of Bones for example, the US version, can go for $200 or more. And of course, it also depends if a limited edition was actually done for a particular King book.

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    Ultimately, I don't care THAT much, but sometimes an Americanization of language is just too noticeable, and it grates on my nerves. For some books it doesn't really matter, but for stories SET in Britain, it annoys me to have a character saying "flashlight" instead of "torch." I think it's just because I'm prone to noticing language that it bothers me. It takes me out of the moment and I start thinking about publishing houses and why/how they decide to change things, and lose track of the story.

    But I'm a dorky language geek.

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    Senior Member Starting to Drool Incessantly frik51's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by theenormityofitall View Post
    One thing about UK editions, is that the cover art is almost always better no matter who the author is.
    I don't really agree, but this did give me an idea for a new topic...

    sk

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    Quote Originally Posted by theenormityofitall View Post
    One thing about UK editions, is that the cover art is almost always better no matter who the author is. And of course, the lower print run should make it more valuable,
    Those are the two reasons I prefer UK HCs over US HCs, when given the choice. 'Course, the cheap paper that many of the UK publishers use tends to age/tan some, offsetting those two pluses a bit.

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