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Date Amendment / addition Link to new / amended area
16 June 2017

Thanks to feedback following the launch of the new Room on DW’s Library, I am able to add a few more illustrations of DW’s own copies of his own works

I am also, thanks to Richard Humphreys, able to add an illustration of the last missing dust jacket for Hutchinson’s ‘Century of …’ series – the jacket for ‘A Century of Nature Stories’, which, while not strictly DW related, will nevertheless be of bibliographical interest.

The Museum : DW’s Library

Hutchinson’s ‘Century of …’ series
26 April 2017

After last month’s massive update, this month sees a smaller number of items added. In the new Room on DW’s Library I am adding one further book – a book on Voodoo from the Occult section of DW’s Library.

The Museum : DW’s Library
The Occult

I have also added further references to the sections on Wilde and on Anthony Powell; the latter giving the source for our knowledge that Powell enlisted DW’s help with part of the plot for ‘A Dance to the Music of Time.’

Oscar Wilde
Anthony Powell

Finally, and with thanks to Kevin Pearce, Dorothea Rota and Steve Whatley, in the bibliographic section I have added further details of recipients of the limited editions of ‘Old Rowley’ and of ‘The Devil and All His Works’.

'Old Rowley'
'The Devil and All His Works'
29 March 2017

This month sees a further special exhibition go live in the virtual Museum – an exhibition on DW’s Library. I had been meaning to create this for some time as his Library was such an important facet of DW’s life, but in the event it has taken some two years to assemble and comment on the material. I hope you will enjoy the new Room as much as the others; the extent of DW’s Library was very impressive.

The Museum : DW’s Library

My thanks go, as always, to the various contributors, whose names are given at the bottom of the pages, and who include various booksellers, Leeds University Library’s Special Collections for some early manuscript material, and our friend Steve Whatley for one item. I would also like to pay tribute here to Nigel Burwood of ‘Any Amount of Books’, who wrote two excellent online articles about DW’s Library in ‘Bookride’ in 2011, which set a very high standard to be followed.

16 February 2017

A further recent find in Leeds University’s Special Collections is some material on the exhibition that DW and the Bond Street Galleries put on in 1967 to publicise the paintings of Fijian artist Semisi Maya. I am indebted as always to Special Collections for their unfailing courtesy and for their permission to display it.

The Museum Room 9: Semisi Maya

Viewers will recall the rather charming sketch DW drew of himself as a young(ish) wine merchant that I put on display in the Museum last month. My thanks to Darren Nugent for pointing out to me that the ‘Two Pipes’ of Port that DW sold in the sketch would have been a staggering one thousand four hundred and forty bottles (!).

The Museum Room 5: The Wine Merchant

Finally, if any DW aficionados live near Southend and are around on Saturday 11th March, Darren has reminded me that there is a talk on ‘Dennis Wheatley – the man, his life and his works’ as part of the Essex Book Festival. Subject sounds good, but not too sure about the speaker …

The Library : The Essex Book Festival 2017
20 January 2017

First of all my thanks to my Netherlands correspondent Hillebrand Komrij for giving me the details of a hitherto unknown Dutch edition of ‘The Malinsay Massacre’, and for letting me reproduce on the site an article he has written about the Crime Dossiers – thank you Hillebrand !

Wheatley around the World : Holland

Secondly, it gives me great pleasure to include a rather charming new exhibit in the site’s ‘virtual Museum’.

The Museum Room 5: The Wine Merchant

In the New Year I was browsing the material in Leeds University’s Special Collections (first visited with Darren Nugent in 2015; I hope to go there again with Darren soon), and I came across a rather lovely drawing by DW showing him extolling the virtues of laying down Port to one of his noble customers. My (profuse) thanks to Special Collections and the Wheatley family for permitting me to display it.

16 December 2016

The only seasonal addition that has come to light this year - which illutrates how uncommon such things are - is a Christmas card from broadcaster Jack di Manio

Elsewhere however I am adding a rather charming period etching of Lansdown Passage, the location of one of the Duke de Richleau's tiffs with German Intelligence in the The Second Seal, to the other photos of the passage - this latest addition courtesy of Franklin Johnson

Finally in this update I am including a paperback reprints of two books by members of DW's extended family - a 1957 paperback of The Hammersmith Maggot, by his son-in-law William Younger, writing as William Mole, and a 1962 paperback of Dominant Third, a book by William Younger's wife Elizabeth writing as Elizabeth Hely.

Plans are already afoot for some new sections to the website which I hope will interest you in 2017.

Very best wishes for Christmas and the New Year to all aficionados of Dennis Wheatley and all he stood for.

Charles

Christmas cards sent to Dennis Wheatley

Franklin Johnson's event June 2015

Books by other members of the Wheatley / Younger Clan
23 November 2016

This month's update comprises the Report on the 2016 Dennis Wheatley Convention.Highlights included speeches by John Runter, Anna Mannion, Colin McCourt of 'The Devil Rides Out - The Musical' fame and a group playing of Dennis Wheatley's 1950s board game Alibi.

Please note that next year’s Convention – our tenth - will take place slightly later in the year , on 10/11 November 2017, so we can commemorate the 40th anniversary of DW's death on the Friday evening.

The Ninth Dennis Wheatley Convention
27 September 2016

This month we see a few more foreign finds – a Dutch edition of The Man Who Missed The War with variant boards discovered by Hillebrand Komrij, a rather charming Swedish edition of The Devil Rides Out dating from 1951 discovered by Steve Whatley, and a 1975 Swedish reprint I came across of To The Devil – A Daughter.

Wheatley around the World : Holland

Wheatley around the World : Sweden

Do send in any more finds you may come across, please !


24 August 2016

This month brings a miscellany of new, and in some cases strange items.

First of all we have, courtesy of Hillebrand Komrij in the Netherlands, a third edition of the Dutch reprint of Murder Off Miami. Previously we only knew of the original Dutch 1936 version. Hillebrand has also provided dates for some of the other early Dutch editions.

Wheatley around the World : Holland

Secondly we have, courtesy of Steve Whatley, a prize competition held by Hutchinsons for the best 250 word review of Red Eagle (knowing Steve, he will now be trying to locate the winning entry !)

Hutchinson and other Publicity Material

Third we have, courtesy of Kevin Pearce, a rather curious copy of Murder Off Miami with the middle section blank – you can see it in the reprint section for Murder off Miami just before the 1979 edition. It was annotated ’Rough Copy’ on the inside, but I don’t know in whose handwriting. Anyway, it seemed to me sufficiently interesting to record on the website

Best wishes to you all for your summer holidays !

First editions 1935-1937
31 July 2016

Having spent the last two updates dealing with DW’s newspaper serialisations, I was looking the other day in some of the late and wonderful Bob Rothwell’s box files, and I found some further copies of the Daily Mail serialisation of The Devil Rides Out. From these, I am adding another eight episodes from the serialisation.

Other Publications : Serialisations

I have chosen these because they all have rather fine illustrations, but perusing Bob’s copies, some interesting things emerge. First, not quite all the episodes were illustrated, and second, several illustrations were used more than once – pictures of the Duke, Rex and Richard, for example.

Doubtless on a thorough analysis many more interesting things will emerge. Just as a taster, as the eagle eyed will see, the blurb at the top right of the page on the first day of serialisation (31st October 1934) states

“Startling ! Provocative ! Romantic !

Satanists at work in London.

A Sabbat in the West Country

The Devil’s mass in Scotland …”

The last line looks strange, but reflects the state of the story in an early manuscript version. In that manuscript, the final struggle between Light and Darkness took place in Scotland rather than in Northern Greece, which is where it happened in the final version.

If anyone has further copies – and particularly for the serialisations for which we currently have no illustrations at all on the site, please let me know.

29 June 2016

Building on last month’s theme of newspaper serialisations, I have added another five issues of the serialisation of The Devil Rides Out, and another five issues of the serialisation of They Found Atlantis to the new section.

Other Publications : Serialisations

Interestingly, all of the episodes of The Devil Rides Out seem to have been illustrated with rather fine artwork, while only the initial pages of They Found Atlantis which introduced the characters seem to have been illustrated – but that theory will be put to the test as more episodes come to light or are looked at in archives.

If anyone has any further material to add to this new section, please let me know. As you will see, we have complete gaps for Contraband and Blue Murder (better known as Uncharted Seas). If anyone has anything on these, it would be particularly welcome.  

For those of you living in the U.K., we live in interesting times – I wonder what DW would have made of them - ? That, perhaps, is a theme for the Library.

27 May 2016

Back in February 2014 Darren Nugent discovered, in a trawl through the archives of the British Library, that a DW novel had been serialised in Farmers Weekly – perhaps an unlikely publication to include a DW novel. Thanks to Kevin Pearce’s researches, we now know that it was The Forbidden Territory, which the magazine serialised in the middle of 1934, over a year and a half after its original publication. Weird. Kevin has tracked down three of the episodes, and as well as updating the ‘Bibliography of all things Wheatley section’, I have now created a new sub-secti of the website to deal exclusively with serialisations. I am starting it off with entries and will add more as they come to hand. If everyone would keep their eyes open for further material I can record here, I would be most grateful.

Bibliography : Short stories & serialisations

Other Publications : Serialisations

Elsewhere, over the years, the excellent James Hallgate of Lucius Books has provided me with many an exciting DW find. This year is no exception. This time he has come across a superb publicity postcard for DW’s wife Eve Chaucer’s book ‘No Ordinary Virgin’, nicely inscribed by DW himself, which is now on display in the Hutchinson Publicity Material section.

Hutchinson & Other Publicity Material
21 March 2016

For those who track down foreign editions, the greatest prize is to discover a hitherto unpublished language or country of printing, and Steve Whatley has had the accolade of achieving this several times.

He has done this once again – tracking down the first known publication of DW in Rumania, of ‘Contraband’, which has the bonus of a rather elegant cover illustration.

Wheatley around the World: Rumania

He has also discovered a 1968 edition of ‘The Dark Secret of Josephine’ in Spain with a similarly appealing cover.

Wheatley around the World: Spain

Elsewhere, I had the considerable pleasure of meeting noir novelist Kathi Unsworth at PFD’s recent Dennis Wheatley / John Creasey blogging event, and she mentioned to me that Paul Willetts has recently published an immensely readable account of one of Maxwell Knight’s anti-espionage operations for MI5 in World War Two with the eye catching title of ‘Rendezvous at the Russian Tea Rooms’. It’s a very good read, and DW figures frequently in the book. I’ve just finished the book and it is highly recommended.

Other Publications: Books & Articles About DW etc.

And finally, but by no means least in this month’s crop, I have the pleasure of thanking one of our and my friends in the U.S.A., Jim Devlin, for very kindly sending me a photo of DW at a book signing, which I am exhibiting in the virtual Museum, in the Room on covering DW in the post War period.

The Museum Room 9: The Post War Years
23 February 2016

This month’s first update is the Official Report on the Eighth Dennis Wheatley Convention, which was held on 31st October last year. Apologies it took a while to publish; there were a few things I needed to sort out first.

Dennis Wheatley Conventions

We all look forward to the Ninth Dennis Wheatley Convention, on 29th October 2016.

My thanks go to Steve Whatley for providing me with the fresh discoveries I’m displaying this month.

In ‘Wheatley Around the World’, thanks to Steve, I am re-ordering the Portuguese entries as we come to better understand their chronology, and adding some additional publication details.

Wheatley around the World : Portugal

In Turkey, Steve has located Volume 2 of the 1967 edition of ‘Curtain of Fear’.

Wheatley around the World : Turkey

Finally, in Finland, we now have a colour photo of the cover of ‘Black August’ and a photo of its rather nice endpapers, a photo of the illustrated cover of ‘The Eunuch of Stambul’, and a photo of the illustrated cover of ‘Contraband’. Personally, I think the latter is really lovely, and like many of the pre-war / wartime foreign reprints, I think it would easily win awards in a dust jacket design competition. So many are so beautiful.

Wheatley around the World : Finland

Up in the present, you may be interested to know that Dominic Wheatley and I were guests at a Crime Classics blogger event held at the Groucho Club on Saturday last; part of a series of events designed to re-awaken interest in Dennis Wheatley and other classic authors. After the opening pleasantries, I had the pleasure of sharing the podium with John Creasey’s son Richard, and giving a short talk on Wheatley. It was a charming event, the bloggers were highly interesting people who were a delight to talk to, and the authors that were paired together were rather well chosen – as John Creasey and DW knew each other, and as DW was on one of the panels which gave JC an award.

1 February 2016

The first update of 2016 is a minor domestic mystery. Towards the end of last year my correspondent Christopher Chadwick pointed out to me a copy of 'Roger Brook in the French Revolution' with a strange dust jacket on eBay.

First editions 1956 – 1959

It was sufficiently strange that I bought it, and I am displaying it on the website. The jacket is very plain, and has no price and no blurb on the flaps. I have never seen one like it. Perhaps it is some kind of publisher's pre-production cover. Comments please, if anyone has seen anything similar.

To start the New Year we also have a new, green, variant of the 65th Thousand of Who Killed Robert Prentice ?, courtesy of Kevin Pearce, and a new discovery from Czechoslovakia – a serialisation of The Fabulous Valley dating from 1939, with a curiously 'cowboyish' cover – this courtesy of our expert on all things foreign, Steve Whatley.

First editions 1935 – 1937
Wheatley around the World : Czechoslovakia
18 December 2015

As usual at Christmas, we are displaying for the first time some Christmas fare. This year’s discoveries are a Christmas card from the Hungaria Restaurant, a Christmas card from DW’s first wife Nancy, and a Christmas card from the superlative actor who will always remain the Duke de Richleau to many of us, Sir Christopher Lee.

Christmas cards sent to Dennis Wheatley

All come from a recently discovered archive at Special Collections, Leeds University Library – an account of how the archive came to the attention of DW enthusiasts can be found in the attached write up by Darren Nugent. I am most grateful to him for allowing me to share in the moment of ‘discovery’, and I am most grateful to Special Collections, and indeed to the Wheatley family, for allowing me to display this material on the DW website. They have also very kindly agreed to my displaying certain other material in the site’s virtual Museum in due course – watch out for more in 2016 !

The October 2015 mini Field Trip

The update concludes with another foreign find by Steve Whatley – he gave me in the course of the year a black and which photo of an early Finnish edition of The Forbidden Territory. Thanks to Steve, I am now able to replace it with a colour version.

Wheatley around the World : Finland

A Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year to all suppliers of material, all my correspondents, and all supporters of the Wheatley cause !

23 November 2015

Thanks go this month to Kevin Pearce, for discovering a promotional postcard for Contraband (1936).

Hutchinson and other publicity material

Thanks also to Steve Whatley, who has once again ferreted out some previously unknown foreign editions; a further Dutch reprint of The Man Who Missed The War, and further Swedish versions of The Eunuch of Stamboul and of Contraband. He has in fact discovered two new Swedish editions of Contraband; the 1950 edition having a particularly evocative cover.

Wheatley around the World : Holland
Wheatley around the World : Sweden

I have also added details of the (five) copies I have seen of DW’s special limited edition of Old Rowley to the bibliographical details section of the website. If anyone has come across any of the other copies, I would be most grateful for the details !

Title Notes
22 October 2015

Sometimes something important and hitherto unknown comes to light. A recent case of this was the appearance in September on eBay of the menu for the Luncheon that DW threw on 3rd January 1933 to launch his very first book. Until this copy appeared on eBay we had no idea that such a menu existed. It was bid up to £343, and can be seen in the appropriate ‘Room’ in the Virtual Museum.

The Museum : Room 6 Instant Success as an Author

Elsewhere, in ‘Reprints’, Steve Whatley has found a copy of the 1938 reprint of ‘Red Eagle’ with an unrecorded dust wrapper.

First Editions 1935-1937

Elizabeth has found a first edition of ‘The Launching of Roger Brook’ with variant coloured boards.

Title Notes (1)

A couple of months ago, Paul Embleton contacted me with news of the discovery of only the third known complete set of the First Gift Box, (the first only came to light a few years ago) and with help from him, Steve Whatley and Kevin Pearce, I have added to the complex notes on that publication. You can identify copies of books that come from this set by the blue staining of the top of the text block. We have still to find even a single copy of the Second Gift Box – that remains one of the most elusive of DW’s publications !

Title Notes (2)

Steve Whatley has once again ferreted out a number of hitherto unknown foreign editions. He has found a complete copy of the Hungarian edition of ‘Murder off Miami’, a cover for the Spanish edition of ‘The Rising Storm’, and a hitherto unrecorded Spanish edition of ‘The Black Baroness’.

Wheatley around the World : Hungary
Wheatley around the World : Spain
15 September 2015

Steve Whatley has once again ferreted out a number of hitherto unknown foreign editions; two editions of ‘Bill for the use of a Body’ from Portugal; an Estonian edition of ‘Uncharted Seas’ (when we did not even know that DW had been published in Estonian !), and a pre-war Czech edition of ‘The Secret War’. Further foreign updates are to come !

Wheatley around the World : Portugal
Wheatley around the World : Estonia
Wheatley around the World : Czechoslovakia

Among more recent publications, Jim Devlin has pointed out that the late Roger Dobson (1954-2013), another good friend of this site, has had some of his studies published posthumously under the title ‘The Library of the Lost’, and they include an article ‘The Weird World of Dennis Wheatley’.

Other Publications : Books & Articles about DW etc

In addition to these, Franklin Johnson has continued his researches into Lansdown(e) Passage, and on his Field Trip page I am now able to include two pictures which show what the passage would have looked like at the time the Duke hid there in 1914.

Field Trips: Franklin Johnson’s event
07 August 2015

The last month has seen me receive a plethora of information from aficionados of and visitors to this site. So much that I am going to save some for next month !

Dr Laurent Mignon, Associate Professor of Turkish at the Oriental Institute at Oxford University has very kindly pointed out to me that DW’s ‘Curtain of Fear’ was translated into Turkish in Istambul in 1967. This is the first translation of DW into Turkish that we know of, and Dr Mignon has explained to me that this translation should be seen in the context of the times – when many young Turkish people were starting to question the pro-American stance of the state. I am most grateful to Dr Mignon for this unique piece of research.

Wheatley around the World : Turkey

We have known since Bob Rothwell’s days that DW’s compendium ‘A Century of Spy Stories’ (1938) had a gift binding variant. Now thanks to Kevin Pearce’s researches we know that his earlier ‘A Century of Horror’ (1935) also had a gift binding variant.

First editions 1935-1937
A Century of Horror

Darren Nugent has pointed out that the summer issue of The Oldie magazine has an article ‘The Spellbinder – Michael Barber in praise of Dennis Wheatley’. Darren is also on the trail of the missing episodes of the ‘Paula’ cartoon strip (see ‘The Library’), and of many other fascinating bits and pieces !

Other Publications : Books & Articles
about DW etc

Franklin Johnson has added a few additional pieces of research to Mary Gallacher and my write-ups of our recent dinner at the Connaught. More on this is to come next month.

Conventions and Field Trips :
Franklin Johnson’s event, June 2015

Those good friends of this site Steve Whatley and Jim Devlin have also sent me some new discoveries – but I’ll hold them back for the end of the month so as not to spoil you with too many finds all at one go.

One final mention – if you look in The Library, a third (?) copy of the First Gift Box has just been found. If you’re interested in acquiring it, please contact me for further details.

Also, if you haven’t put yourself down for it and would like to come, don’t forget the October Convention !

29 June 2015

This month’s main update is an account of a memorable evening Franklin Johnson and his wife Lydia gave members of our group. It involved a re-creation (in considerable style, I may add) of one of the meals featured in ‘The Devil Rides Out’, and a walk past the location of one of the Duke de Richleau’s confrontations in ‘The Second Seal’. If DW had been alive to join in, he would have been in his element!

Conventions and Field Trips : Franklin Johnson’s event, June 2015

It also features a more recent publication, from 2011; John Lewis-Stempel’s ‘Six Weeks’, which tells the story of a number of junior officers sent to the Front in World War One – where they faced a life expectancy of six weeks. It features a number of anecdotes about DW. This book was a gift from John Runter to the webmaster, who wishes to record his gratitude !

Other Publications Critiques/Books and Articles about ...
27 May 2015

Thanks go this month to Steve Whatley on two accounts.

First of all, Steve has written a comprehensive account of his Field Trip to Traben-Trarbach in 2013, on the one hundredth anniversary of DW’s stay there in 1913.

The Traben-Trarbach Field Trip 2013

Secondly, we had Portugal in the ever shrinking list of countries where DW’s work had been published, but where no-one had ever managed to find a copy of one of the local publications. We can now strike off Portugal – Steve has found a Portuguese paperback edition of Contraband from circa 1944. Thank you for sharing your latest find with us, Steve !

Wheatley around the World : Portugal

20 April 2015

This month sees some unusual and ultra rare updates / announcements.

Firstly, Hillebrand Komrij from the Netherlands has identified a dustjacket for the 1936 Dutch issue of They Found Atlantis (‘Atlantis Gevonden’). Without a dust jacket the book is fairly common; but this is the only known surviving dust jacket.

Wheatley around the World : Holland

Secondly, in clearing out their cellar, a member of the Wheatley family has found some rare survivals from DW’s own cellars. They include a bottle of Sazerac de Forge Cognac 1840, one of the oldest cognacs around, and a few bottles of DW’s home-made Nectarine Gin, replete with a printed Grove Place label. I don’t know if anyone has tasted the gin yet to see if it is still drinkable. Photographs of these ultra rare finds replace the generic photo that previously began Room 5 of the virtual Museum.

The Museum Room 5: The Wine Merchant

Thirdly, a number of you will remember Iwan Morelius / Hedman, DW’s great fan from Sweden to whom he dedicated The Ravishing of Lady Mary Ware’, and the man who wrote DW’s first bibliography. Iwan assiduously collected signed, jacketed first editions of DW’s works, and he disposed of them some time before his death. I am delighted to advise that they and various other items from the Hedman collection have been bought by Franklin Johnson, who many of you will have met at the 2013 Convention. They could not have found a better home. Because Franklin has bought them they will stay together rather than be split up, and even better, Franklin has volunteered to make them available for inspection by serious students of DW’s works. A huge thank you for that, Franklin.

16 March 2015

Steve Whatley continues to unearth rare and early foreign reprints.

Wheatley around the World: Czechoslovakia

This time he has unearthed a 1936 Czech edition of The Eunuch of Stamboul with a rather erotic cover, and two Czech editions of The Quest of Julian Day, both dating from 1948 – one hardback and the other a jacketed softcover.

Thank you as always, Steve!

15 January 2015

The January update consists of two items, but there is also a bonus !

The first update is the report on a ‘Mini Field Trip’ that four DW enthusiasts undertook in the summer to explore some of DW’s connections with south western Surrey.

The 2014 ‘Mini Field Trip’

The second, which comes courtesy of Ian Sayer, is a photo of DW, Joan, Denise Robins and Jack Strachey at the pyramids. I have incorporated this rather superb item into the travel section of Room Nine of the Museum.

The Museum Room Nine: DW’s travels

In addition to these, we have a wonderful addition to ‘The Library’ courtesy of Darren Nugent and Gavin Fuller. When Magnus Magnusson died in 2007, he left his Mastermind video collection to Gavin Fuller, the 1993 Mastermind Champion. Darren contacted Gavin, and it turns out he is a DW fan. He has searched out the 15th April 1984 Mastermind in which Katharine Heaney answered questions on the Duke de Richleau, scoring an impressive 17 out of 18, and transcribed the questions and answers for us. To go to them, click on the link to the right.

Mastermind: The Duke de Richleau

As we now have both the Mastermind Roger Brook and the Mastermind Duke de Richleau questions, and we need some clever person to track down the questions and answers from the New Zealand Mastermind (thanks, Cibator !) on Gregory Sallust, to complete the set !

Once again a very happy New Year to all the site’s visitors and to all friends of its cause!

Charles

 



    
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