Talking book covers a lot these days – been sorting through old boxes of books to clear space in London and coming across various little treasures I’d forgotten I had. Anyway, here’s a Left Book Club edition cover of Agnes Smedley’s China Fights Back. Subtitled, An American Woman With the Eighth Route Army, the book was published in 1938. The Left Book Club was the excellent idea of Victor Gollancz, the London publisher who set the imprint up in 1936 to represent left wing views and to “help in the struggle For world peace and against fascism”. It was a great success with over 57,000 members and one of the UK’s first book clubs. Smedley was in good company – indeed Smedley was a lightweight compared to many on the list which included Orwell, Koestler, Spender etc. However, Edgar Snow – an equally lightweight left wing writer was on the list too. To be fair Smedley hasn’t really stood the test of time anymore than Snow while of course the Orwell and Spender’s still tower.