I spy on a car journey Super Series

I spy Super Series advert 1966Full check list and cover scans on next page.

By the mid-1960s the small I-Spy books were beginning to look a little old-fashioned. It was also a struggle to keep the low price with sales slowing and rising production costs. Publishers Dickens decided to issue an I-Spy Super Series to retail at 2/6d, the same price – and indeed almost the same size – as the very popular Ladybird books. It also compared favourably with the Observer Books (which were 5/- at this time).
As far as we can be certain, the first two titles were released in 1965, growing to twelve in total. With the sale of I-Spy in 1970 the Super Series were all discontinued. They are scarcer than their smaller cousins.
At the time the books were a big leap up in quality from their 6d cousins. Larger size, with 64 pages, the books were perfect bound like a paperback (this early softback binding technology hasn’t lasted too well and 60 years on the glue often dries out leaving loose pages.) The pages were a busy mixture of both black and white pen drawing, colour illustrations and photographs. The pages here are from the new I-Spy Cars, and show the imaginative layout.
The familiar points system was still in place, with room to write in where you spotted each item. Instead of sending the book away to Big Chief I-Spy as before the book had a certificate printed inside, which could be checked by a grown-up. Logistically it made a lot of sense but it broke the link between spotter and Big Chief.
The books were printed by Jarrold & Sons in Norwich, who are better known as printers of many of the souvenir guide books to stately homes and the like.
Six titles were available in 1965, growing to eight by April 1967. At the end of 1967 ten books were listed and the final two were added in 1968.

I spy cars Super Series I spy cars Super Series I spy cars Super Series


2 thoughts on “I-Spy • Super Series 1965

  1. The Super Series of “At the Zoo” was published in 1966 and 1967. The earlier edition was perfect bound, whereas the latter saw a return to staples. The two editions also saw a change in address of Dickens Press on the title page from 4 Upper Thames Street in 1966 to 161 Queen Victoria Street in 1967. The content of both editions was identical across 64 pages and both were printed in Norwich by Jarrold & Sons.

  2. A Super Series I-Spy Special publication was published in 1968 “Animals in Danger” in collaboration with The Wildlife Youth Service. Perfect binding was abandoned in favour of staples and the content was spread across 64 pages. Unlike other Super Series books, this edition did not contain a Certificate on the last page. The book was printed by Jordison & Co., Middlesborough and published by The Dickens Press.

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