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Osric The Extraordinary Owl

4 Aug, 2021 (edited)
2021-8-4 4:31:00 PM UTC


A beautiful story brought to life with stunning artworks by the illustrator of Middle-earth and Narnia, Pauline Baynes.
Osric the Extraordinary Owl tells the story of a little owl who considers his life to be as dull, grey and uninteresting as his feathers and goes in search of a more colourful identity.

This book is a collaboration between two friends: the renowned illustrator Pauline Baynes – celebrated for her incomparable illustrations to the seven volumes in C S Lewis’ much-loved ‘Chronicles of Narnia’ and books by J R R Tolkien, along with treasured maps of Middle-earth and Narnia – and the award-winning writer and broadcaster, Brian Sibley, who has written about both Lewis and Tolkien and was responsible for the legendary BBC Radio dramatisation of The Lord of the Rings.

It was at the Tolkien Society’s 50th anniversary conference in 2019, when noted Tolkien artist Jay Johnstone met Brian Sibley and another of Pauline’s friends, Wayne G. Hammond, who has curatorship of the Pauline Baynes bequest of paintings and drawings. Out of that Tolkien encounter came the decision to finally get Osric’s saga into print.

This collector’s edition hardback book with a foreword by Wayne G. Hammond has been designed and produced by Jay Johnstone and comes in a gilded presentation box.

Each Hardback book is individually signed and numbered by Jay Johnstone and comes with signed book plates by Brian Sibley & Wayne G. Hammond.

This is an exclusive LIMITED EDTION with a print run of only 250.
Size: 192mmx 237mm, Hardback book with dust jacket, Silver foil icon on black presentation box

Pauline Baynes Illustrations reproduced with kind permission from
The Chapin Library of Rare Books at Williams College, Massachusetts

Brian Sibley talking to Jay Johnstone about this project at Tolkien 2019

4 Aug, 2021
2021-8-4 9:48:40 PM UTC
So was the story written afterwards by Brian to fit art that Pauline had already produced, or were the story and art always intended to go together (might be in the youtube, but is not playing without lots of glitches for me at the mo)?
4 Aug, 2021
2021-8-4 10:41:54 PM UTC
The art was created to illustrate the story, but did not find a publisher until now.
5 Aug, 2021
2021-8-5 12:01:42 AM UTC

Deagol wrote:

The art was created to illustrate the story, but did not find a publisher until now.

Thanks for the clarification. In some ways it is unfortunate that there isn't a "standard" edition aimed more at children (with their grubby paws), rather than collectors, though perhaps that will happen at some point.

That said, I ordered a copy.
7 Aug, 2021
2021-8-7 11:01:45 AM UTC
Got the book today, very impressed.

Contrary to Pauline's belief, I do think she can draw Owls.

10_610e67dfa46af.jpg 6000X4000 px

10_610e67dfac625.jpg 6000X4000 px
7 Aug, 2021
2021-8-7 11:24:51 AM UTC
It’s a lovely book. Mine arrived too. And I’m not going to keep the package box despite the limitation number of the book being on my address label ?
7 Aug, 2021
2021-8-7 7:30:52 PM UTC
Looks great! I'm finally back home from vacation and have put in my order for a copy.
7 Aug, 2021
2021-8-7 10:40:49 PM UTC
I'm looking forward to this. I'm not 100% sold on the graphic design work for the cover/jacket, but Pauline's illustrations look great and the overall package looks nice. Should be a good one to read to the boy (even though it isn't about diggers)
16 Aug, 2021 (edited)
2021-8-16 2:35:03 PM UTC
23 Aug, 2021
2021-8-23 5:27:11 AM UTC
My Osric arrived today. Nice enough -- and a little bigger than I had been expecting. Mine is No. 39.
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