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Today, I'm introducing a new term for a group of Redwall enthusiasts. There are fans of the Redwall stories, however these people take it to the next level. They not only read Redwall, they make it a point to hoard Redwall-related items and trinkets. The term I'm introducing for these fans is the Redwall Collectors Community, and it describes people such as myself who have quite large collections. Anyone can be a Redwall Collector. I've received e-mails from many fans eager to tell me what they have, and it's always exciting to hear from another person just as interested as myself. This new term is also going to serve as the title for an on-going feature series that I've been running for quite a while now, however this title actually allows for the exploration of items I didn't quite know how to work into this website. I'm also hoping this term draws out otherwise reclusive Redwall collectors. Perhaps there's things we don't even know exist out there! I'm particularly interested in the early 1990s. Was any Redwall promotional material released then?
Now, to our main feature item. The Redwall Diary 1996 is a particularly rare item in that it was a strictly limited release. The diary is dedicated to a certain calendar run, and there's no point in publishing more after the year ends. On top of that, most people purchase a diary to write in it. Tracking an unused one down seems quite difficult from the onset, and it was. There are a few still floating out there on the internet, however some sellers believing in price gouging, and one particular business is offering the diary for the complete ripoff price of $121.39. I paid nowhere near that, not even a quarter of that price.
When I found the diary for a price I wanted to pay, I will admit that the condition stated was "used". It was a gamble; the diary could be filled with writing or beat up. I decided to take my chances. Even if it was filled with writing, it would still be worth it to see the item. My gamble paid off, because when the diary arrived, it was in perfect condition, and 100% free from the mark of anyone's pen.
The first thing I observed was the size: it's tiny! I've included a photo of the diary compared to the Voyage of Slaves hardcover; hopefully from the angle you can see the thickness of it too. The diary was published by one of Brian Jacques' first publishers in the UK, Random House. A few context clues lead me to believe this was just a UK release, and not a US one (a place for "postcode", UK spelling - favourite vs favorite, etc).
Inside the front of the diary is a place to put your name and contact information, followed by a brief description of Brian Jacques. The next pages though were a nice surprise: artwork by Allan Curless! I've included this art below, these are color drawings of some characters that didn't even have pictures to my knowledge.
The diary has a small spot for writing every day starting December 25 1995 and ending January 5 1997. This was interesting considering the diary was published in July that year! Artwork throughout varies; there are some full pages of cover artwork from Fangorn and Pete Lyon. There are also little illustrations courtesy of Curless that appear on diary pages. All drawings are in color.
Enjoy the pictures below of the diary in detail. Do you have a Redwall rarity? Contact me, we just might explore it here!