Followup: P-50 Great Russian Stories

Ron Holl modlib at
Wed May 17 12:53:26 EDT 2006

Hi Barry,

Thanks very much for the response, and the interesting info.  Your conclusion seems sound that the white was later.  I'll add these tidbits you provided to the P-Numbered Paperback page at Amenities.  That page also identifies color variations found so far (Hamlet, Makers of Mathematics, Iceman Cometh, etc.)

I think the different (thicker) paper was most surprising.  Besides the Picasso I have not seen that before on the pbacks.


> I don't have info about printings, but P50 sold 6,900 copies in 1958/59 and 6,500 copies in 1959/60.  I'm not sure which 12 month periods are being counted, but I'm confident that P50 didn't sell any copies before Jan. 1959 when it was published.
> I think the white cover is later.  ML Paperbacks dropped the diagonal line after spring 1959, and the phrase "Modern Library Paperbacks are published ..." is omitted from many titles published after spring 1959.  And since there were no updated lists of titles after the P50 list, the reprint simply reproduced the list from the first printing.  I have no idea why they switched from a yellow to white background on the cover, but there are several other examples of color changes on different printings of ML Paperbacks as well.
> I don't have a copy of the later (white) printing.  I have copies of all of the paperbacks except P46, but not all of them in first printings.
> Barry

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