Initially, this book surprised me. Not to put too fine a point on it, it’s a very generalist, introductory publication, and the hobby is already well-served by books of this standard. I wondered why Mr. Twydle, a second-generation pen repairer with many years of experience, would choose to write such a book. The answer lies in the publisher: Crowood Collectors’ Series.
The Crowood Press publishes books on collectables, everything from British Army Cap Badges to Vintage Radios, some comprehensive, others introductory. No doubt they have a template for introductory works, and it is this format that Mr. Twydle has had to conform to. Given his background I feel sure that Peter Twydle has a great fountain pen book in him; sadly, this is not it.
The book has chapters on understanding the fountain pen, its history, brief notes on some of the manufacturers, guidance for collectors, pen care, and how to choose a pen to suit your hand and writing style. There is an appendix on Arthur Twydle, Peter Twydle’s father. He was a pioneering pen repairer who taught many of the current generation of British pen repairers and restorers.
With a list price of £19.95, it’s an inexpensive introduction to the hobby for an absolute beginner. It can be found deeply discounted at Amazon Marketplace and Abebooks. If you are completely new to the hobby and would like to see a general overview before you commit, this might provide an inexpensive entry for you. Otherwise, put the money towards something more specific and informative.