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THE YELLOW FAIRY BOOK
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THE YELLOW FAIRY BOOK

by Lang, Andrew

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Yarmouth, Maine
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1894. With Numerous Illustrations by H.J. Ford. London: Longmans, Green, and Co., 1894. 2 pp undated ads. Original yellow cloth pictorially decorated in gilt, all page edges gilt. First Edition of the fourth of Lang's fairy books (following the Blue, Red and Green); there were twelve in all, published from 1889 through 1910. Among the illustrated tales in this volume are "The Six Swans," "The Emperor's New Clothes," "The Magic Ring" and "The Tinder-box." Although the earliest fairy books (Blue and Red) are quite scarce due to presumably smaller printings, we find that the subsequent lighter-colored ones (such as Yellow, Pink and Lilac) are the most difficult to find in fine condition, due to their greater susceptibility to cover soil. This is a very good copy -- scarcely any wear other than some erosion of the decorative gilt, and less cover soil than usual, but as usual the spine is rather dull (though gilt never stands out against yellow cloth anyway).
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THE MARK OF CAIN
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THE MARK OF CAIN

by Lang, Andrew

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1886. Authorized Edition. New York: Charles Scribner's Sons, 1886. 2 pp undated ads. Original yellow wrappers printed in black. First American Edition of this mystery by the noted Scottish novelist, poet and literary critic -- perhaps now best known for the twelve "Fairy Books" for children (1889-1910) that he adapted and edited. Lang's THE MARK OF CAIN is one of the earliest novels to feature, in a big way, tattoos -- a man has his body tattooed exactly like someone else's, then kills that man and impersonates him in order to claim his inheritance. (Along the same vein, two years later H. Rider Haggard wrote MR. MEESON'S WILL, in which a critical will is tattooed upon a woman's body.) THE MARK OF CAIN also involves, in a smaller way, a "flying machine" -- and thus is science fiction for its time. This copy is bound in yellow wrappers, which was Scibner's less-expensive option (to hard-bound cloth) during the 1880s. It is in remarkably near-fine condition (very light soil, but scarcely any… Read more
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THE WHITE PEACOCK
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THE WHITE PEACOCK

by Lawrence, D.H.

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Used
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Hardcover
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Yarmouth, Maine
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NZ$4,236.50
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1911. A Novel. New York: Duffield & Company, 1911. Original light blue-grey cloth decorated in white and black and with lettering in white. First Edition of D.H. Lawrence's first book, which he began in 1906 (at age 20) and rewrote several times; it is the tale of a love triangle, between Laetitia (DHL's working title for the book) and two men -- a farmer to whom she is drawn sexually, and a coal owner's son whom she marries. This is a copy of the first issue (with integral title leaf that bears the copyright date 1910 on the verso; both issues are dated 1911 on the recto, but the cancel leaf of the second issue bears a 1911 copyright date on the verso). Duffield's first edition came out on 19 January 1911; they also printed the leaves for Heinemann's UK edition (with Heinemann preliminaries and with a different binding) -- which came out the following day, January 20th. Another difference between the two editions is that most copies of Heinemann's edition have pp… Read more
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LEYTON HALL, and Other Tales. In Three Volumes
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LEYTON HALL, and Other Tales. In Three Volumes

by Lemon, Mark

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Yarmouth, Maine
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NZ$1,364.30
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1867. [inscribed by the author] London: Hurst and Blackett, 1867. 16 pp Vol III ads dated November 1866. Original blind-stamped blue-violet cloth with spines stamped in gilt. First Edition of this collection of tales: Vol I consists entirely of "Leyton Hall," Vol II consists of "Hearts are Trumps," "Mind Your Own Business" and "The Talking Spell," and Vol III contains seven stories mostly having to do with Christmas. Mark Lemon (1809-1870) was the co-founder (in 1841 with Henry Mayhew) of Punch Magazine, and was a talented playwright and actor. He was born about two years before Charles Dickens, and died 17 days before him -- and it is as a close friend of Dickens (and a partner in numerous dramatic efforts) that Lemon is perhaps best-known today. But he also wrote numerous novels and tales, including at least three three-volume titles such as LEYTON HALL. This set is in very good-plus condition (very minor edge-wear including a subtle repair at the head of Vol I's spine, two Vol III leaves… Read more
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THE DALTONS. Or Three Roads in Life
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THE DALTONS. Or Three Roads in Life

by Lever, Charles

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Used
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Hardcover
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Yarmouth, Maine
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NZ$682.15
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1852. With Illustrations by Phiz. In Two Volumes. London: Chapman and Hall, 1852. Front endpaper of Vol II printed with Chapman & Hall ads. Original blind-stamped rose-brown cloth. First Edition in book form of this tale of "the downside of an irresponsible lifestyle when one enters middle age. The picaresque hero has now become a family, rather poor, but convinced of its aristocratic entitlement as it dwells on its recent Irish past and travels the Continent" [Murphy]. The Irish Lever had himself left Ireland to travel the Continent. This pair of volumes is in what Cater labels as "binding B" -- rose-brown blind-stamped cloth with a gilt vignette on the spines. As Carter points out, the "A" binding of dark brown cloth was used for the binding-up of parts (with stab-holes evident on the leaves); this "B" binding was used for copies initially issued, as here, in cloth. (One could argue that the sheets in "A" copies were first issued earlier… Read more
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OUR MESS: TOM BURKE OF "OURS"
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OUR MESS: TOM BURKE OF "OURS"

by Lever, Charles

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Used
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Hardcover
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NZ$789.86
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1844. Edited by Charles Lever (Harry Lorrequer). With Numerous Illustrations on Steel by Phiz. [In Two Volumes.] Dublin: William Curry, Jun. and Co. [etc.], 1844. Original light grey-green paper-covered boards with red cloth spines, with printed spine labels. First Edition in book form (after serial parts) of this early Charles Lever tale -- about an exiled Irish patriot, earning military glory in France (Napoleon is one of the characters). Lever started out as a medical doctor, but during the 1830s began writing picaresque adventures during his spare time, which were published in 1839 as THE CONFESSIONS OF HARRY LORREQUER (the similarly-picaresque PICKWICK PAPERS, with illustrations likewise by "Phiz," had just been published with great success). This title, five years later, is likewise "edited by Harry Lorrequer." These volumes' title pages are confusing, in that the first volume reads "OUR MESS | Vol II | TOM BURKE OF "OURS" | Volume First" and the… Read more
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CONFESSIONS OF CON. CREGAN: The Irish Gil Blas
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CONFESSIONS OF CON. CREGAN: The Irish Gil Blas

by [Lever, Charles]

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Used
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Yarmouth, Maine
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1849. With Illustrations on Wood and Steel, by Hablot K. Browne. [In Two Volumes.] London: W.S. Orr and Co., n.d. [1849]. 2 pp Vol II ads. Original bright red cloth with spines pictorially decorated in gilt. First Edition in book form of this novel, following the 14-in-13 monthly serial parts. CON CREGAN was an experiment by Lever -- as it was published anonymously, even though Lever was by then quite well known. He later wrote: I am not sure that I made any attempt to disguise my style... I trusted most of all to the fact that I was making my monthly [serial] appearance to the world in another story, and with another publisher, and I had my hope that my small duplicity would thus escape undetected... The critics discovered in "Con Cregan" a freshness and a vigour which were so sadly deficient in "The Daltons" [Lever's 1850-52 novel published with his name as author]. It was, they averred, the work of a less practised writer, but of one whose humour was more subtle, and whose portraits,… Read more
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THE DODD FAMILY ABROAD

THE DODD FAMILY ABROAD

by Lever, Charles

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Yarmouth, Maine
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1854. New York: Harper & Brothers, 1854. Original light brown printed wrappers. First American Edition of this epistolary novel, presented by Lever as 74 letters written by and to various people of the cast. Lever portrays an Irish family seeking to economize by living on the Continent, specifically in Italy -- just like the Lever family, as he would later serve as British Vice-Consul in La Spezia and then as Consul in the Austro-Hungarian (but Italian-speaking) city of Trieste -- a post that he would assume from Sir Richard Burton. Lord Derby offered him the Trieste position with the memorable line "Here is six hundred a year for doing nothing, and you are just the man to do it"; Lever subsequently described himself as "Her Majesty's Flunkey". This US edition was issued "unabridged and unaltered" as No. 187 in Harper's "Library of Select Novels" -- priced at $1.25 in cloth or at 75¢ (as here) in paper wrappers. The UK edition, illustrated by "Phiz," came out both in two volumes and in one… Read more
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ST. PATRICK'S EVE
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ST. PATRICK'S EVE

by Lever, Charles

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  • hardcover
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Used
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Hardcover
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Yarmouth, Maine
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1845. Illustrated by Phiz. London: Chapman & Hall, 1845. Original grey-green cloth decorated in gilt, all page edges gilt. First Edition of this children's book -- "It was on the 16th of March, the eve of St. Patrick, not quite twenty years ago..." -- modeled on the Christmas books of Charles Dickens, at that time quite the rage, coming out annually. Included are four plates (including the frontispiece), plus vignettes in the text, by "Phiz" -- Hablot K. Browne. This copy is in the first binding state, with all page edges gilt, with the gilt vignette on the front cover, and with the blind-stamped harps in the corners of both covers. It is in very good-plus condition (cloth a little rubbed and mottled, one plate reinforced on its backside). Sadleir 1420; Wolff 4103.
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THE MARTINS OF CRO' MARTIN
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THE MARTINS OF CRO' MARTIN

by Lever, Charles

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  • hardcover
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Used
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Hardcover
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Yarmouth, Maine
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NZ$718.05
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1856. With Illustrations by "Phiz." London: Chapman and Hall, 1856. Original blind-stamped green cloth. First Edition in book form, following publication in monthly serial parts. [This novel] depicts the fall of a Connemara estate in the period between Catholic Emancipation (1829) and the Great Famine (1845-1849)... Even as he asserts that the fall of the landed gentry brings disastrous upheaval to a traditional society, Lever insists on the inevitability of such collapse... Lever's reforming Anglo-Irish heroine Mary Martin is doomed to defeat and early death, unable to stem the costs of her absentee family's arrogant isolation from their tenants and neglect of their responsibilities as landlords. [Kreilkamp] Included are forty plates (including frontispiece and vignette title) by Hablot K. Browne ("Phiz"). This is a hefty 625-page volume, bound in simple blind-stamped green cloth -- much like Dickens's novels of the same era like BLEAK HOUSE and LITTLE DORRIT --… Read more
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FARO NELL AND HER FRIENDS. Wolfville Stories

FARO NELL AND HER FRIENDS. Wolfville Stories

by Lewis, Alfred Henry

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Used
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Hardcover
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Yarmouth, Maine
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NZ$143.61
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1913. Illustrations by W. Herbert Dunton and J. N. Marchand. New York: G. W. Dillingham Company, (1913). 4 pp undated ads. Original red cloth. First Edition of the sixth and last volume of Southwestern tales sited in Lewis's fictional town of "Wolfville" -- following WOLFVILLE (1897), SANDBURRS (1900), WOLFVILLE DAYS (1902), WOLFVILLE NIGHTS (1902) and WOLFVILLE FOLKS (1908). This volume consists of twelve tales, such as "Dead-Shot Baker," "Old Monte, Official Drunkard" and "How Tutt Shot Texas Thompson." This copy is in Blanck's state "A" (priority unknown), with the first page of ads listing "Seven Splendid Novels by William MacLeod Raine" (state "B" lists three Lewis books instead, including this title). Also, state "A" has a flat spine with a publisher's imprint 1/8-inch high, while state "B" has a rounded spine with a publisher's imprint 5/32-inch high. Condition is near-fine, with… Read more
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ROMANTIC TALES
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ROMANTIC TALES

by Lewis, M. G.

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Yarmouth, Maine
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1808. [in the 1808 original boards] In Four Volumes. London: Printed by D.N. Shury... for Longman, Hurst, Rees, and Orme, 1808. Original grey-brown paper-covered boards with purple cloth spines and printed spine labels. First Edition of this collection of Gothic tales of the macabre, which Matthew Gregory Lewis adapted from original German, French and Spanish stories. As he indicates in his Preface, "Even in those Tales which are least my own, I have made so many and such important alterations, omissions, and interpolations, that it would have been less trouble to write an entire new work". Lewis (1775-1818) is often referred to as "Monk" Lewis because of his famous (infamous?) 1796 Gothic horror tale THE MONK -- replete with ghosts, murders and ravished maidens; some critics, notably Samuel Taylor Coleridge, considered the book blasphemous and Lewis never entirely escaped the resulting licentious reputation. In 1812 his father died, making him a wealthy man; no longer in need of cash, he… Read more
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MICHAEL BROTHER OF JERRY

MICHAEL BROTHER OF JERRY

by London, Jack

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Used
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Hardcover
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1917. Mountfort. New York: The Macmillan Company, 1917. 10 pp undated ads. Original red-brown cloth with dog silhouettes in black. First Edition of this posthumously-published book, published about six months after JERRY OF THE ISLANDS. Though both books were written by Jack in Honolulu as cash-raising hackwork, MICHAEL, BROTHER OF JERRY was a better book. It argued that far worse than the Social Pit for men were the cages for trained dogs and circus animals. All the foul tricks of the trade were exposed... So effective was his indignation that hundreds of London clubs sprang up on the publication of the book, dedicated to ending the trade in performing animals. [Sinclair] By the time Jack wrote this book in late 1915 (on his and Charmian's second trip to Hawaii during 1915-1916), Jack was swilling so much fruit juice, as it helped flush out the toxins his kidneys couldn't handle, that he was becoming quite fat. He rarely stirred out of his kimono and his hammock. He felt too ill to… Read more
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THE RED-HOT DOLLAR and Other Stories from The Black Cat

THE RED-HOT DOLLAR and Other Stories from The Black Cat

by (London, Jack) Umbstaetter, H.D.

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Used
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Hardcover
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Yarmouth, Maine
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1911. With an Introduction by Jack London. Boston: L.C. Page & Company, 1911. 12 pp undated ads. Original tan cloth decorated in red and black. First Edition, first impression (so stated). "The Black Cat" was a periodical, headed by Umbstaetter, to which unknown writers were invited to submit anonymous stories. To quote from Jack London's Introduction: He [H.D. Umbstaetter] made me possible. He saved my literary life, if he did not save my literal life. And I think he was guilty of the second crime, too... I had been attempting to write something marketable. Everything I possessed was in pawn, and I did not have enough to eat. I was sick, mentally and physically, from lack of nourishment... I was at the end of my tether, beaten out, starved, ready to go back to coal-shoveling or ahead to suicide... This is an attractive, near-fine copy (a few marks at the upper edge of the front cover).
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THE TURTLES OF TASMAN

THE TURTLES OF TASMAN

by London, Jack

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Yarmouth, Maine
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NZ$423.65
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1916. New York: The Macmillan Company, 1916. 5 pp undated ads. Original mauve cloth pictorially decorated in black and orange. First Edition, which consisted of 5914 copies -- far fewer than many of London's earlier works. Jack spent most of 1915 and early 1916 on two extended trips to Hawaii, and the eight tales of this collection were written there. During this time Jack reached out to his estranged fifteen-year-old daughter Joan, appealing to her to start getting to know him via the mails (since he knew his ex-wife had forbidden their daughters to meet Charmian). The title story is a fantasy "in which a dark-eyed, flashing daughter came back to a ranch with her dying father in order to hear his stories of adventure and to light his cigars until he passed away in peace" [Sinclair]. The titles of the final two tales of the book are further indication that Jack knew his days were numbered: "Finis" and "The End of the Story." Jack London died about a month after TURTLES was published. This is… Read more
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MOON-FACE and Other Stories

MOON-FACE and Other Stories

by London, Jack

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Used
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Hardcover
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Yarmouth, Maine
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NZ$359.03
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1906. New York: The Macmillan Company, 1906. 4 pp undated ads. Original blue cloth decorated in white, green and gilt. First Edition, consisting of 8,400 copies (preceded only by a pre-publication copyright issue). Probably the best-known story in this collection is "Planchette" -- in which the spirit of a woman's dead father returns to kill her lover; it showed that Jack had evidently not outgrown his mother's belief in evil spirits. By the time MOON-FACE came out, Jack had journeyed to the Far East to cover the Russo-Japanese War for the Hearst organization -- at which he tried to emulate the Great White Scribe of the period, Richard Harding Davis. He badly injured an ankle on in a leaping game with the other correspondents on board ship: "It was the beginning of a morbid worry about his physical condition, a long anxiety that would end only with his death" [Sinclair]. He returned to California to discover that his wife had attached his Hearst earnings in her suit… Read more
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THE NIGHT-BORN

THE NIGHT-BORN

by London, Jack

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Used
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Hardcover
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Yarmouth, Maine
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1913. New York: The Century Company, 1913. 1 page undated ads. Original blue-grey cloth decorated in black. First Edition of this collection of ten short stories. In addition to the title story, the volume includes "The Madness of John Harned," "Bunches of Knuckles" and "To Kill a Man." This was the second of four books in a row published by Century, after Jack had strayed from Macmillan on his trip to New York a year earlier. He had business in New York with the Millergraph investment [he had bought into the invention of a new lithographic process, which promptly went awry], and he took Charmian there in the winter of 1911. It was the worst time of her marriage. He abandoned her most of the time in an apartment on Morningside Heights, while he roistered night and day round the city with... a pack of friends. He stopped writing and drank heavily, unable to resist the lure of being a literary lion. He went to boxing matches, he spent the nights on Broadway or with… Read more
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JOHN BARLEYCORN

JOHN BARLEYCORN

by London, Jack

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Used
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Yarmouth, Maine
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1913. Illustrated by H.T. Dunn. New York: The Century Co., 1913. Original very dark green cloth. First Edition, first issue (with only one blank leaf at the rear other than the endpaper). This was London's "confessional book," a fictional but quite autobiographical tale that Jack wrote to exorcise his shame -- which bore witness to the fear behind Jack's renewed and excessive drinking... The prohibitionists had cleverly used the universal terror of syphilis to urge the crusade against the saloon. Only after a man had too much to drink -- the propaganda said -- would he pick up a woman and a disease to blight the home. With his secret fears about contamination by disease or alcohol, Jack provided in JOHN BARLEYCORN the best ammunition that the drys had ever been handed by a major writer... JOHN BARLEYCORN was sensational as the history of a man who drank too much, yet who claimed to hold his liquor. Its author only hinted at the psychological and physical fears that made him a heavy drinker,… Read more
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The League of the Old Men in THE SPINNERS' BOOK OF FICTION

The League of the Old Men" in THE SPINNERS' BOOK OF FICTION

by London, Jack

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1907. With a Dedicatory Poem by George Sterling. Collected by the Book Committee of the Spinners' Club. San Francisco and New York: Paul Elder and Company, n.d.[1907]. Original coarse unbleached linen decorated in dark green with front cover applied illustration, top page edges gilded. First Edition of this volume of stories by California writers, illustrated by California artists, designed by John Nash and printed at the Tomoye Press for Paul Elder of San Francisco. In addition to this tale by Jack London, there are literary contributions by fifteen others (about half of them women) -- such as Gertrude Atherton, Frank Norris, Charles Warren Stoddard and Isobel Strong (stepdaughter of R. Louis Stevenson). As for Jack London's contribution (which had appeared in his CHILDREN OF THE FROST in 1902): "The League of Old Men" is one of the four pieces 'which are essential to the London vision of the Northwest,' according to Calder-Marshall, and London often said that it was his personal favourite. In… Read more
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THE GAME

THE GAME

by London, Jack

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Used
Binding
Hardcover
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Yarmouth, Maine
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1905. With Illustrations and Decorations by Henry Hutt and T. C. Lawrence. New York: The Macmillan Company, 1905. 6 pp undated ads. Original grey-green cloth pictorially decorated in white and brown. First Edition, which consisted of 26,420 copies. In this prizefighting tale, Joe Fleming tries to convince his fiancée to accept his career by inviting her to watch him box (a precursor to the "Rocky" movies: the fight, blow-by-blow, occupies almost the entire second half of the book). Jack had long cherished a cult of the perfect male body... He had pictures taken of himself in bathing costume, flexing his muscles and shadowboxing. He took snapshots of George Sterling posing on the beach, wearing nothing. Obsessive descriptions of male Anglo-Saxon strength, grace, and sexuality began to creep into his novels, particularly THE GAME, written in the summer of 1904. In that romance of prizefighting, the hero expressed Jack's vanity about his own body -- his skin was fair as a… Read more
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