Catholic Herald Reporter
THE 25,000-copy first printing of Pope John's diaries, "Journal of a Soul"—to be serialised in the CArrioLio HERALD starting on March 5— has been sold out two weeks before publishing date. Two further printings have been ordered.
Mr. Geoffrey Chapman, the publisher, said this week that a second printing will he ready for new orders by the second week of March, and a third early is April.
All the big book shops in London have bought large numbers of the publication and are arranging huge window displays.
Two weeks ago Mrs. Sue Chapman, the publisher's wife, was unruffled by the response. "It's a very good hook," she said. "We were expecting big sales".
But this week her husband said he felt it was "fantastic" to have sold so many copies of an expensive book, "It shows there is an enormous interest in Pope John".
Editions of the diaries in other languages appeared late last year. Its Italy 40,000 have been sold during six months; in France 50.000 in four months.
"Journal of a Soul" is a collection of the personal notes Pope John wrote on odd scraps of paper from the age of 14 till he died. He himself considered them the most intimate portrayal of "my soul", and the book makes public for the first time in history the diaries a Pope has written from his youth.
• The CATHOLIC HERALD circulation department warned this week that copies of the paper containing the diaries, for 12 weeks starling on March 3 are likely to be sold out in many places. To make sure of getting a copy, advance orders should be placed.