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The Silverado Squatters by Robert Louis Stevenson

Price: $28.00
Item: RB0785
PRODUCT DESCRIPTION
Giving wine as a gift? Give Robert Louis Stevenson's vintage Napa wine with it—or instead
This collector's edition book is Stevenson's magnificent song of solitude to the Napa Valley of 1880. His beautifully crafted prose creates a lyrical celebration of living simply, amid the silence and solitude of an abandoned silver mine in California's Napa.

It was there in the bunkhouse of the Silverado mine that he and his bride, her son and their dog lived for two glorious months in the summer of 1880. Silverado is America's other Walden, and Stevenson's language is as lofty as was his view from Napa's Mount Saint Helena.

We commissioned the calligrapher Mandy Young to ornament the text with her exquisite lettering, and to illustrate it, the highly regarded Napa Valley artist, Earl Thollander (1922-2001). Each of the six chapters that we selected from the original book features one of Earl's glorious watercolors.

This was Earl's last published work. He once told us that Stevenson's mountain had been his mountain, too—he could see it from his studio. Silverado may well be your mountain—a book to read and reread until it seems that you, like Stevenson, have found your "corner of the blue hall of heaven."

Click here to read a few excerpts.

Click here for a behind-the-book look at the artists of Silverado.
  • Original watercolor illustrations by the Napa Valley artist Earl Thollander
  • Lettering by the calligrapher Mandy Young
  • Rich cream stock
  • Burgundy linen cover with silver foil
  • Six selected chapters
  • 87 pages; 51/4W x 71/4H
  • A gift book you'll also want to own
  • Not in the bookstores—only from Levenger
Silverado Squatters Linen Cover 5 5 7 7
Wonderful Intro to Stevenson's works This is my first book by Levenger Press and I was glad to see the quality and attention to detail. The book itself is pretty. Its size makes it very nice to hold and read. I also like the binding, which allows it to be held comfortably open without fear of damaging the spine or pages. The silver used for the text on the front, back and spine looks great against the red fabric-like cover. The script used for the title on the cover, the chapter headings and highlighted passages throughout is very elegant looking. Another wonderful touch is the watercolor scenes throughout the book. They are not only lovely, they also give you a starting image that the author then expands into even more vibrant and detailed views. Even the endpaper map of Napa adds to the book by giving you a sense of time for the writing. As a child I had only read "Treasure Island" and "Dr. Jekyll & Mr. Hyde" by Robert Louis Stevenson (RLS). While I remember enjoying the stories, I think I read them too young to appreciate the author’s ability to paint images with words. RLS makes you feel like you are seeing everything with your own eyes. My favorite chapter was "The Sea Fogs" which caused me, for a moment, to believe that the fog was as alive with such unpredictable and potentially dangerous energy as the raging waves of an ocean during a hurricane. He was able to draw me in and make even the mundane tasks of living seem interesting. Reading this book has driven me to revisit RLS's works; and thanks to the details provided in the "Introduction", I plan to read not only his fictional works but also those of his real life adventures. I'm glad that I read this book and hope to revisit it once I've become more familiar with RLS's other works. July 1, 2009
A Lovely Gift I bought this book for a friend who is from the Bay Area. The book is beautifully bound and has lovely illustrations. Levenger is a first class outfit. The book was packaged in a great looking gift box that one could keep it in for safekeeping. January 9, 2014
Great Gift Idea Review in one noun: Delight. Review in one sentence: The packaging and content of this little highly-recommended number provides a delightful sensory and reading experience. Review in multiple sentences: From the wine-colored linen cover, to the enchanting illustrations and calligraphy, this book looks and feels delicious. The binding is solid and will certainly outlast me. :-)#. The pages are thick and juicy, warm and comfortable to turn. The preface and introduction set up the story quite nicely, and the notes at the end provide additional sources to follow-up on this nicely crafted story, which the reader is sure want. This, like a fine wine, can be savored slowly, and will do just as well on hot summer days in the hammock or cold winter nights in front of the fire. Just as Stevenson is great at the turn of a phrase, Levenger Press is great at the turn of a book. June 5, 2009
Great Gift Idea Review in one noun: Delight. Review in one sentence: The packaging and content of this little highly-recommended number provides a delightful sensory and reading experience. Review in multiple sentences: From the wine-colored linen cover, to the enchanting illustrations and calligraphy, this book looks and feels delicious. The binding is solid and will certainly outlast me. :-)#. The pages are thick and juicy, warm and comfortable to turn. The preface and introduction set up the story quite nicely, and the notes at the end provide additional sources to follow-up on this nicely crafted story, which the reader is sure to want. This, like a fine wine, can be savored slowly, and will do just as well on hot summer days in the hammock or cold winter nights in front of the fire. Just as Stevenson is great at the turn of a phrase, Levenger Press is great at the turn of a book. June 5, 2009
A tale of times gone by I enjoyed this book because it speaks of a time that I don't think exists anymore. Stevenson documented his life, writing about his travels and life even as he was writing adventure (Kidnapped, Treasure island) and science fiction (Jekyll and Hyde). This particular tale is of the summer he and his new family spent living in an abandoned minimg building on the slopes of Mt. Saint Helena above Napa Valley in California. They just hung out and spent the time enjoying getting to know one another , The quality of the book is very high. It is beautifully illustrated with watercolors from a local artist and accented with expressive calligraphy. The paper is heavy stock and lends weight to the story. After reading Silverado Squatters I will be reading more Stevenson. June 4, 2009
A Corner of the Blue Hall of Heaven Living in "a corner... of the blue hall of heaven" is a microcosm of the rich, yet abbreviated life of Robert Louis Stevenson in the year 1880. This most improbable setting for a two-month honeymoon, the Silverado mine in northern California was a product of Stevenson's lack of health and wealth. Through the eyes of this migrant Scot, the reader is gently led through the treasures and pleasures of a simple life. “The imagination loves to trifle with what is not.” Stevenson's descriptions are rich with detail and imagery. His sentence structures are as varied as the setting. He employs over 40 figures of speech to emphasize the impressions on his soul. Though residing in a less than perfect setting, in a “nest” abounding with rattlesnakes, we participate in their carefree lives abounding in simplicity and humility. Never a complaint was penned. Stevenson succeeds in describing the desolation remaining from the boom days of the gold and silver rush in Napa Valley while sharing slivers of the abundance to be realized as the area matured in wine production. While not dwelling on the past or speculating on the future the reader is held in the present, the way it was during the gentle warm summer of 1880. Levenger Press produced a masterpiece in compiling the selected chapters. The observations and imaginations of RL Stevenson came alive within the book's rich linen cloth cover. I loved the rich heavy cream pages beautifully adorned and accentuated with original watercolor illustrations of Earl Hollander and the calligraphy of Mandy Young. This gem is one to treasure. Pun intended. June 3, 2009
We need more books like this I hadn’t read Stevenson since I was a schoolboy enjoying Treasure Island and Kidnapped. This book reminded me why I had enjoyed him so much then, and still do today. His writing is exceptional. For anyone who loves to spend time outdoors, or in any quiet place with just your thoughts for conversation, this true story will greatly appeal. Earl Thollander’s watercolors are marvelous. You can see he has a deep connection to both Napa and Stevenson. This is an excellent gift for a man or a woman. Just be sure to buy for yourself as well. March 1, 2009
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