OUR BLOG

Welcome to the Shapero Rare Books Blog. Here you can find articles on rare books written by our Specialists on subjects ranging from Pirate books to modern first editions; on authors such as Ian Fleming and Roald Dahl; and on illustrators including Quentin Blake. Sign up to our weekly newsletter at the bottom of this page to receive regular updates.

The Best Exhibitions and Events in December 20...

A selection of the best events & exhibitions taking place in November 2019 both in London and a...

The Best Exhibitions & Events in November 2019

A selection of the best events & exhibitions taking place in November 2019 both in London and a...

An Interview With Quentin Blake

Ahead of Quentin Blake’s exhibition of new works here at Shapero HQ, our Digital Content Mana...

On Her Majesty's Secret Service: Writers and S...

Writers and spies - exploring all things cloak and typewriter by delving into the murky world o...

Banned Books: The Freedom to Read

Celebrating the freedom to read, Banned Books Week has become a focal point in the literary yea...

Can You Guess the Rare Books in Emoji?

All of these Rare Books in emoji can currently be found on the shelves at here at Shap...

Ralph Steadman - a brush with surrealism

Ralph Steadman was born this month in 1936; here we republish in full for the first ti...

Cosway Bindings - Search for a Star

More than 100 years after their invention, this Rare Book Review article finds true Cosway Bind...

Stargazers Saviours - Science Fiction Rare Boo...

Rare Book Review reveals that the whole universe of science fiction lies in the original pulp m...

Shiver me Timbers! Rare Pirate & Corsair Books

Rare Book Review article slicing through the cut-throat stories from the earliest pirate books ...

Rare Books & Works on Paper: A Celebration of ...

As the publishing & art world finally become more gender inclusive, we celebrate some of the fa...

Shapero Rare Books and Shapero Modern feature ...

The past month has seen Shapero Rare Books and our Gallery, Shapero Modern included in Tatler a...

Banned Books

Books have been banned for a variety of reasons over the centuries, ranging from racism, anti-r...

Iris Murdoch - House of leaves

Author Dame Iris Murdoch was born on this day in 1919, we delved back into the Rare Book Review...

Book Launch | Exceptional Women and their Stor...

Shapero Rare Books are delighted to be hosting the European la...

Millicent Fawcett inspires the first female st...

Splendidly rendered in bronze, Millicent Fawcett now stands shoulder-to-shoulder with the likes...

Collecting James Bond First Editions

One of the most internationally celebrated fictional characters of all time, James Bond first e...

John Mortimer - Paradise Postponed

In honour of the famous creator of Rumpole of the Bailey, born on this day in 19...

The Album Amicorum of Rhaban Giese

The following text has been written by Dr Bob Miller, and represents the research he kindly und...

8 Banned Books That Might Surprise You

In honour of Banned Books Week 2017, Shapero Rare Books takes a look at some of the titles you ...

Manuscripts Don't Burn

The strictest period of banned books in Russia began in 1934 when Zhdanov instructed the First ...

Retracing the Footsteps of 19th Century Explor...

The great natural history museum collections have at their foundation, specimens collected by 1...

10 Rare and Valuable Children's Books

First and early editions of children's books can be immensely valuable, but only if they are in...

Photography: Eternal cities

Incredible photos from over 100 years ago show how much our lives have changed.

The Bookshop: A poem

Birds sat on tables poised at every angle their feathers clouded with motes of dust, p...

Fine illustrated books: Highlights from 2017 c...

In our latest Fine Books catalogue, discover a selection of some of the most beautiful...

Topical Books to Read (and Collect) in 2017

VisitEngland has declared 2017 the "Year of Literary Heroes". See below for the titles and auth...

Inspirational Quotes From Literature

Need some motivation to keep on top of those new year resolutions? Who better to take advice fr...

The Greatest Polar Exploration Literature

Lines in the Ice: Marginalia My recent talk at Shapero Rare Books gave me the opportun...

Mutiny! The Court-Martial Documents of the Bou...

On 28 April 1789, disaffected crewmen took control of the HMS Bounty and cast the captain, Capt...

Censorship of Books in the Soviet Union

Banned, censored, exiled: Soviet era literature After the Soviet Union was formed in 1...

The Layered Legacy of Captain Cook

Captain James Cook (1728-1779). Nathaniel Dance. BHC2628 Far beyond his discoveries of Australi...

Last Portraits of the Antarctic Heroes

The discovery of John Franklin's HMS Terror at the bottom of an Arctic bay this September co...

All rise: The Book of Bread by Owen Simmons

Most staple foods are never given the chance to shine, humbly carrying on, being consumed at i...

Layard and the Antiquities of Assyria

Today we are all too aware of the appalling damage inflicted by ISIS on the ancient sites of Ir...

Napoleon's Description of Egypt

The extraordinary success of a megalomaniac, an uncharted world, and a team of savant explorers

Literary Brunch - John Gimlette's 'Elephant Co...

[vcex_spacing] This Saturday, we were treated with a brilliant talk by John Gimlette fo...

Larger than Life – The Explorer Sir Richard ...

The explorer Sir Richard Burton, after the painting by Lord Leighton. Frequently descr...

Ernest Shackleton, a Tale of the Antarctic

Ernest Shackleton, born in County Kildare, Ireland, in 1874, was for many years the forgotten m...

Artists' Books

Click here to discover our selection of artists' books

Imperial Mechanisms

STAUNTON, Sir George Leonard. 'An authentic account of an Embassy' (1797) The rapid acceleratio...

Exploring the Ground Floor

In the heart of Mayfair, Shapero Rare Books is full of treasures. From John Gould to ...

Sir John Barrow - Unsung Champion of the Empir...

Civil servant, naval secretary, developer, publicist, settler, author and all-round-adventurer ...

Looking for Father Christmas – Robert Peary ...

Through the nineteenth century, interest in the North Polar region was stimulated by v...

China in Print

During late November we  journey across the high seas to China in Print, Hong Kong’s lead...

Henry Morton Stanley: 'Bula Matari'

From a workhouse in Wales to establishing one of the wealthiest countries in Africa, the story ...

Utagawa School - Japanese Prints

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Serge Diaghilev and The Ballets Russes

Almost a century has passed since Russian impresario Serge Diaghilev founded the fam...

Great Explorers: James Bruce

The industrial revolution in the United Kingdom spawned a host of great British explo...

Opportunity Knocks

The second part of our spectacular clearance offer presents 25 illustrated books a...

Top Ten British Colour Plate Books (Travel & T...

Produced towards the end of the age of colour plate, overlapping with the new age of p...

Top Ten British Colour Plate Books (Travel & T...

  Produced towards the end of the age of colour plate, overlapping with the new age o...

William Beckford: Aesthete and Book Collector,...

In the second of our series on great collectors of rare books, we investigate William ...

Russian Literature 2015

On occasion of the Russian week in London we are delighted to be able to offer you a ...

William Beckford: Aesthete and Book Collector

In the first of our series on great collectors of rare books, we introduce William Beckford.  ...

Jean Theodore Descourtilz

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Ideas, ideas, ideas!

Ideas, Ideas, Ideas. So many of them around, not always that great, but we are just putting the...

Exploring the Nile

One of the greatest legends associated with Africa concerned the source or sources of the River...