Talking It Over | Uncorrected Proof (Alfred A. Knopf, 1991)


Notes on this edition: Talking It Over. New York: Alfred A. Knopf, 1991. Uncorrected proof in light blue paper covers. As a promotional item, Knopf produced a separate, white proof signed by Julian Barnes that was housed in a black paper “box sleeve”. The proof presented here is the standard proof that precedes the special proof.

Shown in the photos are three versions of the uncorrected proof. The first is a standard copy without markings. Another is the printer’s or “Press Copy”, which features printing information on the cover and text block indicating the color of paper to be used while printing the proofs. Written on the text block in ballpoint ink is “50 wh. | Blue Regular | Train”, suggesting the color that should be used for the paper covers. On the paper cover is written, “press copy | 91-778 | choo choo”, the “choo choo” suggesting “Train”, as written on the text block. In addition, the date on which the proofs were printed is written on the spine as “5-8-91”.

The third version presented here is a copy prepared for distribution to reviewers. The original provisional publication date and price have been covered over with a white slip of paper taped to the cover. In addition, three pages of advertisements have been stapled to the inside front cover.

Talking It Over (London Limited Editions, 1991)


Notes on this edition: The London Limited Edition of Talking It Over is the second limited edition produced of Julian Barnes’s works. Limited to 200 copies, the text is identical to the first U.K. edition published by Jonathan Cape, except for some preliminary pages, including the limitation signature page.

Descriptive Bibliography: First Limited edition – London: London Limited Editions, 1991. £32.00. 200 copies.

Title Page: As in the first edition hardback published by Jonathan Cape.

Copyright Page: As in the first edition hardback published by Jonathan Cape.

Collation: 21.5 x 13.7 cm. As the first edition hardback published by Jonathan Cape, except with two new sheets tipped in to endpapers. Sheet One (front): ‘JULIAN BARNES | TALKING IT OVER | [asterisk] | LONDON | LIMITED | EDITIONS’. (verso): blank. Sheet Two (front): ‘One of 200 numbered copies of the | First Edition of | Talking It Over | signed by the author and | specially bound. | No. [hand numbered] | [author signature]’. (verso): blank.

General description: Binding 22.3 x 14.3 cm. Marble paper over boards, dark blue cloth quarter binding gold blocked on spine. Issued with glassine dustwrapper. White endpapers.

Talking It Over (Alfred A. Knopf, 1991; White Proof in Black Container)


Notes on this edition: In 1991, prior to publishing the hardback edition, Alfred A. Knopf issued a special, signed “proof” edition of Julian Barnes’s novel Talking It Over. The text is bound in white wraps with black text and is housed in a glossy, black, stiff paper slip case/container with the title and graphics printed in white.

Though booksellers routinely refer to this edtion as a “limited” or signed “uncorrected proof”, nowhere on the book or cover does it clearly state that the book is an uncorrected proof, nor is there a limitation statement. That said, this edition was clearly published prior to the Knopf hardback and used as a promotional item.

Not to be confused with the standard uncorrected proof printed in blue paper covers and sent to reviewers.

Parlem-ne | Talking It Over (Edicions 62, 1994; Catalan)


Notes on this edition: Parlem-ne. Barcelona: Edicions 62, 1994. Pp. 252. 20 cm. Translated by Elisabet Ràfols. ISBN: 8429737200 (Catalan).

Flaubert’s Parrot | Talking It Over (QPD, 2000)


Notes about this edition: Quality Paperbacks Direct issued this “omnibus” edition of Julian Barnes’s novels Flaubert’s Parrot and Talking It Over in 2000, the same year Jonathan Cape released Love, etc, Barnes’s sequel to Talking It Over. The cover replicates artwork for Talking It Over, as the book likely sought to capitalize on the sequel’s release.

Barnes’s paperback rights were managed by Picador at the time of publication, as QPD notes on the copyright page. The book’s table of contents lists Flaubert’s Parrot as beginning on page ‘vii’ and Talking It Over on page 231.

Flaubert’s Parrot Talking It Over. London: Quality Paperbacks Direct, 2000. 498 pages.