From Hell The Painfully Counterfeited Limited Edition

This article is a warning to people like me that dream to put their hands on a legit copy of Eddie Campbell's From Hell Painfully Limited Edition (2002, 19 copies), fully described here. All material should be ©Knockabout Comics or Top Shelf. For a complete list of all books reviewed in this blog, please visit the index page.

I was approached in July 2007 through the contact form of this blog about Eddie Campbell's From Hell Painfully Limited Edition. Here is the exact message that I have received:

Hello, are you interested in From Hell - painfully limited edition?
I might have a contact, who is interested in selling his copy. Though I have to say that price will be huge.
If you are interested -- I'll talk to him and see how serious he is for selling it.
Black Library |

A few Months later they have contacted me back to finalize the deal. They sent me pictures of a sealed box set, identical to the real deal presented on Mr McLaren's blog.

Here are pictures taken by me after receiving the box set to show how similar the counterfeit is to the copied box set:

We settled on 1000 €, including shipping and handling as well as their huge 20% fee.

After the payment through Paypal, I expressly asked them one week before the shipment to open the box and check the book itself (pictures of the signature page and handwritten note from Eddie Campbell were attached to the mail).

I had no response from them, and then in early January, I have received the box set. I was excited to finally own this piece of comic book history. The book itself seems genuine:

But then, I opened it at the credit page, and everything falls apart:

I had been played and been sold a 2013 fourth printing edition counterfeit of the Painfully limited edition. Indeed that is painful.

Who has played me? Library Black? Their so called "contact"? I have my opinion but here on a public blog I can only stick to the facts:

  • during email exchanges with Library Black the book was always refer to From Hell The painfully limited edition (for example "Hello, here is the From Hell Painfully Limited Edition" when sending me the first pictures). The moment I have asked for a full refund, the box set has become for them an "item that probably has some minor differences from the item you were hoping for" (their exact words).
  • better yet last time they were talking about it, they refer to "probably a fan-made edition". But the fact that a fan-made edition could be sealed is probably not much of a hint for a library that claims to have specialized in rare long out of print books. And let's remember that they have taken 200 € in the deal, and basically failed to make sure that the book was the real deal.
  • when asked to verify the book in the box set before shipping they haven't do it and haven't responded to the demand itself (by saying no or yes for example)
  • their first response when asking for a full refund was "The previous book owner will not accept the item back, and he will not refund it". But all of a sudden, when Knockabout Comics contacted them about the book being a forgery, it was now possible for them to ask the previous owner.
Long story short, in the end I was able to get a full refund, but only because it was a Paypal payment (Library Black had suggested Western Union), and the intervention of Knockabout Comics after I have contacted them to confirm the forgery.

To my great surprise Paypal was informed the book was a forgery, but have instructed me anyway to ship back the book to the seller in order to get the full refund.

Last time I have heard about this box set, the library had promised Knockabout Comics to send them the book (it was not their first intent, we had to insist). In the meantime, we have to consider that this box set is out there somewhere, so let us be vigilant!

Latest update (24/02/2017): people that pretend to work at Black Library (and it can be stressed out that there are no proof that they are indeed associated to this library) have sold the same copy to a fellow comic collector (Stanislav from comictrade). It is no longer an opinion, it's a fact, these people are crooks. Fortunately, he also was able to have a full refund by Paypal, and Paypal has finally decided that enough is enough, and the conterfeited book journey has ended in Stanislav's collection.


  1. Thanks for posting this information. Very surprising that people would go to all this effort for something probably of interest to fewer than 100 collectors worldwide.

    1. Stanislav and I were simply targeted. They now we were after this book and have made sure we were ready to spend money on it (it tooks several weeks then to make the forgery and come back to me). To the extend of my knowledge there is only one copy of this conterfeited edition.


Write your comment here