Charlie the Choo Choo

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New Member
Mar 27, 2017
Apparently this was discovered by Dave over at Overlook Connection who is now selling this "anomaly" version for $190.00 :confused:
Here is what he wrote:
We have discovered that the very “first” printing of Charlie the Choo-Choo by Stephen King, under his pseudonym Beryl Evans, was inadvertently printed without the Simon & Schuster information on the back, and without a UPC for a short print run. A UPC sticker was applied to correct this, but the Simon & Schuster information was left off. We also discovered that the printing of the interior also has a different printing numbered line.
The printing numbers shows as thus: 10, 9, 8, 7, 6, 5, 4, 3, 2, 1.
The copyright page features ISBN 9781471163777 - this does not correspond to the US or UK edition. Both feature different ISBNs. Looking this ISBN up the master list has no information applied to it. The copyright page in this edition is slightly shorter, and very different than the regular first edition. It begins that it was printed for Great Britain in 2016, and then states it was printed for the US in 2016, again, different than the regular first printing.

This anomaly edition was obviously a mistake, and they stopped the presses to correct this error. After correcting this mistake, the publisher continued the printing of the first print run. This updated first printing still show a first, but the line now reads: 2, 4, 6, 8, 10, 9, 7, 5, 3, 1, which is the back and forth numbered line version. The UPC and Simon & Schuster publisher information placed in the bottom right and left corners on the back as it was supposed to appear.

With this information we’ve only discovered there are a handful of these but we’ll probably never know the exact quantity. This means both the interior and the cover were printed independently of other editions with these anomalies, making this the true first printing. The first printing of this book is just over 30,000 copies (this would include the Anomaly printing), according to my publisher source direct from Simon and Schuster. Again, no information of how many Anomaly copies were printed before they caught the mistake, but it couldn't have been many. As I publish this in early December the publisher informed us that Charlie the Choo-Choo has just gone into a third printing.
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Neil W

Well-Known Member
May 27, 2008
Isle of Wight UK
UK hardcover came from Amazon yesterday.

The presentation is lovely, and I particularly chuckled at the 1942 copyright notice on the title page.

Presentation generally, the style of illustration, and the story itself, are all clearly and deliberately evocative of kids' books from that era - The Little Engine That Could, and the like.

I have two mild criticisms. The first: although Charlie's sinister appearance was care of one of the Dark Tower illustrations and was intended to foreshadow Blaine the Mono, in the context of an entire book which is otherwise a straight-faced book for children, it is out of place. It makes this not really a kids' book at all.

And, the second: the story is so generic that it isn't really original. Rev W Awdry told this story, or similar, in the original Thomas The Tank Engine books in the 1950s.

It's still a nice book to add to the shelves, though.