London: William Heinemann, 1921. Hardcover. Inscribed by Beerbohm with Autograph Letter Signed laid in. The book is inscribed on the half title to S.J. Williams, “Dear Mr. Williams I am so very glad you see to like [And Even Now] and I thank you very much - Max Beerbohm May, 1943.” Laid in is a letter to Williams along with the envelope in which it was sent. The letterhead is “Abinger Manor Cottage, Abinger Common, Nr. Dorking.” In this charming letter Beerbohm writes: “June 15 1943/Dear Mr. Williams/I write to tell you, with many thanks, how proud I am to be the subject of an epigram so perfect in pre-, com-, and incision. Epigrams are usually unkind in wit. Wit and kindness are rather distantly related to each other. But here they seem to be [the word are is crossed out below this] brother and sister, and will abide in my heart as well as in my brain. With kindest regards from my wife and me to Mrs. Williams and to you, I am sincerely and gratefully yours, Max Beerbohm.” The envelope is addressed S.J. Williams, Prof/Queens’ College/Cambridge. The flap of the envelope is affixed to the front endpaper opposite the half title page. There is one fold in the letter otherwise in fine condition. Book is bound in original yellow cloth with paper title label to spine. Soiled and bumped but in very good condition. Interior pages are clean and tight. 320 pages. LIT/042012. Very Good.
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New York: Vanguard Press, 1947. Hardcover. First Edition. Signed by the author on the title page. The author’s second novel. Very good in black cloth boards with blue title to spine. Minor wear to corners and spine ends and very light evidence of a minor dampstain to the rear board. Signed by the previous owner on the front free endpaper, and browning to both gutters; otherwise, a clean copy. In a good light blue dust jacket with white title to spine and front panel. There are several large chips to the top edges of the dust jacket and there are a few small chips to the bottom edge. Browning to the spine panel and dampstaining to rear panel. 294 pages. LIT.052511. Very Good in Good Dust Jacket / Chipped.
Toronto: Cheshire Cat Press, 2019. Hardcover. Number 37 of 42 copies. Signed by Walker, Burstein, and printer Andy Malcolm. Quarto. This is the latest version of The Hunting of the Snark to be published by the Cheshire Press. Carroll's famous nonsense poem has been subject to numerous interpretations over time. In this truly snarky edition, Walker has chosen President Donald Trump and his White House cabinet and advisors for his 21st century lineup of the characters. He writes: "...I think they match up nicely to to the crew of the ship. When you read the poem and think of Trump's cabinet, it's hard not to see the parallels. The political arena in the USA could be described as nonsense, which is exactly the type of poem [this] is. The plot follows a crew of ten unqualified professionals trying to hunt the Snark with a blank map." Thus such familiar names as Scaramucci, Sessions, Priebus, Pence, Mnuchin, Bannon, Sanders and Trump himself appear in parts that reflect their real-life attributes and roles. Bound in grey textured cloth with leather title label to front cover and gilt title to spine. Printed in New Caledonia type on Velin BFK Rives paper. With thirteen engravings by Walker and "The Snark Map" in a sleeve affixed to front pastedown. Housed in slipcase covered in same cloth as book with gilt titling to cover and spine. In fine condition. 71 pages. PRI/011520. Fine.
Toronto: Cheshire Cat Press, 2017. Number 31 of 42 copies. Signed by the printers and the author of the introduction, who are ardent and well-known Carroll admirers. The Cheshire Cat Press was formed by book designer and printer George Walker in 1991. The press began when he and two colleagues produced new editions of Alice's Adventures in Wonderland and Through the Looking Glass. Edward Wakeling, who wrote the introduction, is an internationally known authority on Carroll. From the prospectus: "Here finally is a book collecting all the Alice associated images into one volume. In this book is the work of the other PUNCH illustrators who were influenced by John Tenniel’s pictures for Lewis Carroll’s Alice. Oh yes we include Tenniel too! Through the many decades that Punch existed (1841-2002), references to the Alice books have been a common feature. Now you can have them all in one volume. The images are printed by hand directly from polymer plates made by Boxcar Press, except Alice Reigns Supreme (page 27) which is printed photo-mechanically. The plates were created from high resolution scans made directly from the original PUNCH publications. Printed on 115 gsm Rives Lightweight Buff 100% rag paper using a Vandercook Sp15 letterpress." Bound in green cloth with gilt title to spine and gilt ruling and Punch figure to front cover. Punch figure repetitive design to endpapers. Housed in a green cloth slipcase. In fine condition. 10 x 13 inches. 57 pages. PRI/031221.
London: Grant Richards, 1900. Hardcover. First Edition. Presentation copy from Clodd, inscribed to the book's publisher Grant Richards, the nephew of Grant Allen. This memoir celebrates the life of Canadian science fiction author Charles Grant Blairfindle Allen (1848 - 1899). After teaching in grade school for several years, he became a professor of moral philosophy in Jamaica, where he developed his evolutionary system of philosophy. His literary career began with non-fiction essays on popular science, and he later went on to write nearly 30 fiction novels. He is considered to be a pioneer of the science fiction and detective fiction genres. Bound in original dark brown cloth boards with gilt title to spine. Minor sunning to spine, small chip to foot of spine, and a few spots to boards. Offsetting to endpapers, else clean. 222 pages. LIT/052115. Very Good.
London: George, Allen and Unwin, 1920. Hardcover. First edition, second state. HANDWRITTEN SIGNED POSTCARD FROM AUTHOR LAID IN. This is the author’s first novel, published in London before the US edition. Based on his experience in WWI, the novel sets the stage for Dos Passos’s Three Soldiers (which brought him international attention). The laid in postcard dated 6/15/59 reads “Shall be delighted to inscribe the book if you’ll send it to me here. Have you tried the Gotham Book Mart ... or one of the big London secondhand book stores - it was published there by Allen & Unwin in 1920 (?). The only copy I have is the Philosophical Library reprint ... Cordial Regards John Dos Passos.” The original envelope addressed to John S. Mayfield is also laid in. Very good in blue cloth boards with black title to spine and front board. Fading to spine although the title remains bright. Offsetting to first and last couple of pages and remnants a sticker on the rear pastedown; otherwise the interior is very clean. In very good condition. 128 pages. LIT/051011. Very Good.
London: Macmillan & Co., 1891. Hardcover. First Edition. Lanoe Falconer was the pseudonym of Mary Elizabeth Hawker (1848-1908), the English novelist and short story writer. This scarce book was a very popular supernatural novel in its day. In very good condition in original dark blue cloth boards. Light bumping to corners and chipping to spine. Interior pages clean with some splitting to signatures but text block is holding. 197 pages plus 44 page classified catalogue. LIT/031511. Very Good.
London: T. Fisher Unwin, 1898. Hardcover. FIRST ENGLISH EDITION. This is Maugham's uncommon second book. He apparently did not hold the book in high regard and tried to suppress its republication. It is an historical novel that takes place in Italy, and concerns itself with the weaknesses of the human condition. One sad quote: “One does not really feel much grief at other people's sorrows; one tries, and puts on a melancholy face, thinking oneself brutal for not caring more; but one cannot and it is better, for if one grieved too deeply at other people's tears, life would be unendurable; and every man has sufficient sorrows of his own without taking to heart his neighbour's.” In the original green cloth with gilt title to spine. Minor rubbing to boards and minor wear to spine ends. The text and endpages are slightly browned as is usual with this book. Includes bookplates of three previous owners to front endpage: A.S. Alexander, Eleanor Jacott, and Mark Samuels Lasner. Overall, the pages of this book are clean, but there are occasional spots of soiling to the margins as well as a few light spots foxing to the first few pages. Perhaps the worst spot of soiling is to the very first page in the top margin. It's about 4 mm in diameter. On this page there is also a small pencil notation. This spot has bled through and effects about 5 pages in total. There are finger smudges to the margins of maybe 25 pages spread mostly throughout the first half of the text. Some pages have been opened poorly leaving ragged edges. The binding is rolled and the paper lining the hinges is chipped. The mull remains intact and the binding is secure. Very good condition 303 pages plus 8 pages of ads. LIT/042108. Very good.
London: Remington & Co., 1879. Hardcover. First Edition. This was Moore's second publication, and apart from a broadside of which only one copy is known, this is by far the rarest of his books. No copy has appeared at auction in the past decade. George Moore (1852-1933) was an Irish novelist, poet, critic, and dramatist who is often regarded as the first great modern Irish novelist. This play was done in collaboration with French dramatist Bernard Lopez, who had ignited Moore's interest in drama when they were fellow residents at the Hotel de Russie in Paris. Moore made the suggestion to collaborate after the failure of his first work, Flowers of Passion. The result was this, a five act verse tragedy that was never produced. It was considered at the time almost unreadable because of its poor verse and wooden characters. In later years Moore had very little regard for this early effort and never considered its reissue in any of the collected editions of his work. Bound in original blindstamped black cloth with gilt title and authors to front cover and title to spine. In Edwin Gilcher's bibliography of Moore he describes this as the "Theater (?) impression, slightly larger in size, repaged and without prefatory matter presumably...issued to send to theater managers in an effort to secure a production." Corners lightly bumped and small piece missing from top on spine. Interior pages are very nice. Ownership signature of Henry Knight on title page and bookplate of Rosita de Texada. In very good condition. Housed in a green silk folding case. 139 pages. DRA/080315. Very Good.
London: Leonard Smithers & Co, 1899. Hardcover. First Edition, second issue (issued by Grant Richards with his name at the foot of the spine) of this scarce title. Vincent O’Sullivan (1868-1940) was an American-born short story writer, poet, and critic. He was part of the Decadent group of the 1890s, and a friend of Oscar Wilde, Aubrey Beardsley, and Leonard Smithers. He has been described as a writer of the macabre, such as seen in the story “Will” found in this volume. Bound in original brown cloth with title and author in gilt to spine. Some chipping and bumping to spine ends and corners otherwise in very good condition. Typical offsetting to free endpapers, and one or two gatherings slightly pulled away, but still in very good condition. Undated ownership signature of [?] Baptiste O’Sullivan. 113 pages. LIT/051011. Very Good.
London: Macmillan and Co., 1886. Hardcover. First Edition. A Presentation Copy, inscribed "Edward Shorthouse from his affectionate brother & sister J Henry & Sarah Shorthouse." John Henry Shorthouse (1834-1903) was an English novelist probably most famous for his book John Inglesant. The recipient was also an author. With the bookplate of Ohio book collector Paul Lemperly, with Lemperly's inscription stating that he received the book as a gift from Morris L. Parris, whose collection of Victorian novels is now at Princeton. Parrish's letter of presentation is inserted. Bound in original dark blue cloth with gilt stripes and embossed design on front cover and spine. In fine condition. Housed in a fine custom half-red morocco slipcase. Octavo. 300 pages. LIT/053013. Fine.
Boston: Estes and Lauriat, 1891. Hardcover. Kensington Limited Edition. Large paper. Grey cloth boards with beige title pastedowns to spines. Minor browning and soiling to spines of all volumes and minor wear to edges. Library stamp of A.D. Rathbone, Jr. to front pastedown of all volumes. Illustrated. Clean, bright interiors with illustrations. Each volume has approximately 400 pages. LIT/092707 This set may require an extra shipping fee. Very good.
New York: Charles L. Webster & Co., 1892. Hardcover. First edition, second state of this collection of seven short works by Twain. It has the patterned endpapers of the first state but also the inserted frontispiece portrait of Twain called for in the second (BAL3435). Issued as part of the publisher’s projected series of works by American writers to be called the “Fiction, Fact, and Fancy Series.” Bound in grey-green cloth with titling in gilt to front cover and spine and stamped ornament to front surrounding Fiction Fact and Fancy Series. Light bumping. Front hinge tender, interior pages clean and bright. Bookplate on front pastedown of Jacob Bunn (1814 – 1897) an important Illinois industrialist, financier, and close friend of Abraham Lincoln. Light stamp to free front endpaper “J. Bunn Library Springfield Illinois.” A nice copy in very good condition. 210 pages plus seven pages of advertisements. LIT/091208. Very Good.
New York: Sheldon and Company, 1871. Hardcover. Each month includes "Memoranda" by Twain on pages 133, 286, 424, 565, 726, and 876. The August issue includes Portrait of Twain. November includes "Mark Twain's Map of Paris," a fold out map. Bound in three quarter black leather over black cloth covered boards with gilt title and raised bands to spine. Chipping to spine leather and a few chips to book cloth on both boards. Clean and bright overall with occasional foxing. 888 pages. PER/060519. Very Good.
New York: Harper & Brothers, 1867. Hardcover. Includes Twain's "Forty-Three Days in an Open Boat" on pages 104 - 113. This was Twain's first publication (with his name misspelled, Mark Swain). Bound in three quarter dark brown leather over black cloth covered boards with gilt title and volume number to spine. Rubbing and wear to leather, boards, and edges. Interior is clean and bright overall. Light dampstain to top margins of a few pages. Illustrated. 816 pages. PER/060619. Very Good.
London: Benjamin Tooke, 1700. Hardcover. A unique copy of a first edition Restoration comedy from the personal library of actor and theater manager John Philip Kemble. The volume is initialed, collated, and pronounced perfect on the title page in ink by Kemble along with the date. John Philip Kemble (1757 - 1823) was an important English actor who also achieved fame as the manager of the Drury Lane and Covent Garden theaters. He was also known for assembling a theatrical library that was unrivaled. After he retired in 1819 he sold his collection of 4000 plays and forty volumes of playbills to Cavendish, the 6th Duke of Devonshire. The Devonshire collection is now part of the Huntington Library in San Marino, California. The remainder of Kemble's library was auctioned by Evans in Pall Mall over ten days beginning January 21, 1821 (from the Oxford Dictionary of National Biography). John Vanbrugh (1664-1726) was an untrained but accomplished architect who designed Blenheim Palace and Castle Howard in conjunction with NIcholas Hawksmoor. He was a popular dramatist and some of his comedies such as The Relapse and The Provok'd wife are still performed today. The Pilgrim was originally written by Beaumont and Fletcher in 1647. Vanbrugh wrote the prose adaptation for the theater in 1700. For this copy each individual page has been meticulously mounted on slightly large sheets of contemporary white paper. It has been beautifully bound by Riviere and Son in full tan calf with gold tooling and lettering. The spines have five raised bands with gilt decorated compartments and there are two leather labels, one with the play's title and author, and the other stating "J.P. Kemble's Copy." With gilt dentelles, marbled endpapers, and all edges gilt, in near fine condition. The pages of the play are browned with occasional spots of foxing and soiling but text is completely legible. There are two annotations in the margins of the first and third pages of the prologue that appear to be in Kemble's hand. The first is the name of Sir Richard Blackmore, and the other is a note saying :see the prologue to Southerane's Disappointment or Mother in Fashion. On the last 5 pages it appears that someone was practicing handwriting text and calligraphic flourishes. A very good copy of this unique and unusual volume. Measures 6.5 x 9 inches. 54 pages. DRAMA/011821. Near Fine.
London: William Heinemann, 1892. Townsend, F.H. Hardcover. Includes 44 illustrations by F.H. Townsend. PRESENTATION COPY, inscribed on a tipped-in sheet of notepaper from the Hotel Bellevue, Boston. The inscription reads “With I. Zangwill’s Compliments please send 2 proofs here at once.” Jewish author and political activist Israel Zangwill (1864 - 1926) was passionate about campaigning for the oppressed. Many of his works address women’s suffrage, pacifism, Zionism, and Jewish emancipation. He was a strong believer in assimilation and is credited with coining the term “melting pot” to describe the fusion of various cultures and ethnicities. Bookplate of book collector W.K. Bixby to front end page. Very good in original orange cloth boards with illustration of birds and flowers to front board. The front board is creased and slightly bowed with darkening to spine and edges of boards. The interior is browned along the margins. The front hinge is cracked. Later protective blue cloth dust jacket with maroon leather title label to spine (not pictured). The jacket is frayed along the top edge and there is a short closed tear along the front joint. This is an attractive copy of Zangwill’s rare second solo book. 326 pages plus 16 pages of ads. LIT/050109. Very good.