By 1937 after 100 Penguin titles had been
plans were ready for an educational series, related to Penguins but
its own imprint. Pelicans began. The first title in May 1937 was G.B.
The Intelligent Woman's Guide to Socialism and Capitalism. Shaw
a whole new section on Sovietism and Fascism. This was the first
publishing that the company had commissioned. Within three years there
were seventy titles authored by Sigmund Freud, Virginia Woolf, H.G.
Beatrice Webb and others.
Penguin Specials - Nov 1937
In November 1937 Penguin Specials made their
with Germany Puts the Clock Back by Edgar Mower. World War II was
and Penguin began to commission new books on current international
: Searchlight on Spain by the Duchess of Atholl, The Jewish Problem by
Louis Golding, Blackmail or War? by Genevieve Tabouis, Europe and the
by S. Grant Duff and Mussolini's Roman Empire by G.T. Garratt. With
titles Penguin Books moved from being a reprint organisation into the
of original publishing. The Specials ran to 160 titles, many of which
more than 250,000 copies.
Penguin Illustrated Classics - May 1938
May 1938 saw the launch of the Penguin
Classics with ten titles including Gulliver's Travels, Robinson Crusoe
and Pride and Prejudice. For the series, Penguin commissioned
artists to provide wood engravings.
King Penguins - Nov 1939
Penguin decided to move into both colour
and hardback covers launching the King Penguin series in November 1939.
Based on the much admired Insel books from Germany, they were one half
text and one half colour illustration. They were very much reference
but still pocket sized, if a little taller and wider than the Penguins
and Pelicans.Erudite in nature and style, titles included Some British
Moths, A Book of Roses, A Book of Lilies and Portraits of Christ. .
The Insel books on which King Penguins were