Kitahara's book Yesterdays Toys Robots Spaceships and Monsters has a special place in my bookcase. It was the first book I bought on vintage toys way back in the early 1990's. As I was just starting out I soaked up every image and every word. I must have read that book a hundred times!
The book mostly covered tinplate Japanese space toys and robots, which featured in the author's amazing toy museum. Luckily for me it also covered the author's fine collection of Aurora monster models and film posters. The photographs were superb and it was a real pleasure to leaf through.
Back then when our daughter was about six we had a pet guinea pig called Johnny Pig, which we had running around the front room for an hour each evening. Besides warming himself in front of the coal fire, Johnny had a good eye for a tasty nibble and liked nothing more than chewing on any paper-based objects lying around! Alas, this included my much-thumbed Kitahara, which still bears the tell-tale bite marks of Johnny's chompers!
Johnny is sadly long gone, the first of seven guinea pigs over the years but the book lives on and I always smile when I see those bite marks in the cover! I didn't know it then but Kitahara was to be the first of a whole stack of books on vintage toys and memorabilia, which before the net was invented was THE way to learn.
What was your first book on vintage toys or collectable?