Penguin India are releasing all the Modesty Blaise novels by Peter O'Donnell as part of their Retro Revival series. The Modesty mini-site also has the briefest of biographies about the author and a fun trivia quiz based on the Modesty series.
That's not all... the Retro Revival series is also promising to reprint O'Donnell's Madeleine Brent novels -- nine Gothic romance novels that were hugely successful in the USA and won O'Donnell the Romantic Novel of the Year (for Merlin's Keep).
But it's the subsequent release that should have everyone checking out the exchange rate as Penguin India are promising to issue the Complete Garth in a collectible 5-volume hardback graphic novel box set. "For the first time ever fans can get all 16,000 strips covering 165 stories in 3,000 plus pages."
Garth, whose adventures ran in the Daily Mirror from 1943 until 1997, has only been reprinted sporadically in the UK. The last major attempt was two books from Titan in 1984-85, although in recent years the All Devon Comic Collectors Club were allowed to reprint episodes on a strictly for members only basis.
The Penguin India reprint will be an Indian subcontinent-only production (as are the Modesty Blaise novels) and the tentative release is set for September, although this may slip a month or two as Penguin India are spending time cleaning the strips up.
* Paul Gravett is interviewed by David Hine at Broken Frontier (29 June). Part 2 of the interview will appear this week. Link via Journalista.
(* Modesty Blaise: the first and last books written by Peter O'Donnell, the latter with a Jim Holdaway cover. Garth: (top) climactic sequence from 'The Last Goddess' from 1957, written by Peter O'Donnell; (bottom) the opening sequence of the 1966 story 'Night of the Knives', written by Jim Edgar. Both stories were drawn by Steve Dowling and John Allard and are © Mirror Group Newspapers.)