October 11, 2004


This book I originally saw on eBay.co.uk, and bid but it did not get to the reserve. After the auction I decided I really wanted it, and emailed the seller and we agreed a price of £45 plus postage.

It was only once I had it I realised that it was a great buy. There were only 2 versions. A limited 300 edition with a leather case (selling now around $275 - $500 based on where you see it), and the 600 limited edition in hard blue case which sells on some sites for $100 - $250). I have the latter - number 493 of 600).

So a great book PLUS a bargain.

The book was written by Carol Thatcher (daughter of the UK ex Prime Minister Margaret) and the photos are by Chris Bennett. They were invited by Cunard to develop this glossy (and large) book. It was written in 1999. The pictures were taken in 2 stages (on a November trans-atlantic crossing and then on the world cruise leg between Sydney and Hong Kong). The story and text was based on interviews and experiences on the Hong Kong to Yokohama leg of the world cruise.

This is a really stunning book. It contains amazing photos, including ones of the Captain's cabin and other staff areas plus photos of the ship at work, as well as the better known public areas. The text is written from the passenger perspective and is light and easy to read. Packed full of thoughts and views. It covers the history, the Flakland, tours the ship and the people (including a list of all the famous people who have ever been on the ship).

284 pages of great photos and fascinating text. Get it.. if you can!!

One place is via ALIBRIS.COM, where I cut and paste this text on the 300 limited edition:

"A very special presentation limited edition of just 300 (not to be confused with more normal edition of 600). Bound in blue leather, a silver (hallmarked) plaque inset into the front cover inscribed "This edition number 006 presented to Louise Hill". Prelim states "This edition is limited to 300 of which this is No. 6". 12.5 in x 10.75in, 288pp; colour throughout. Book in Fine condition in blue slipcase, embossed with title. Slip case is Very Good with hardly noticeable very slight marking at margins. Most of the images in this volume were captured during two individual cruises and the photographer attempted to capture the true spirit of life aboard the QE2. The normal limited edition sold for 245 Pounds. These presentation editions are very rarely seen and are collectors' pieces " $275
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