The Stories of John Cheever
NY, Knopf, 1978. A massive volume, which includes all the stories from five of his six previous collections (The Way Some People Live -- his first book, which he declined to reprint during his lifetime -- being the exception) as well as four stories that had never previously appeared in book form. Inscribed by Cheever to John Irving in 1978, in the week prior to publication: "To John Irving and green pasta, Monday night football in Iowa City and a very generous review." Irving has said in an interview with The Paris Review that he and Cheever "were in a particularly ritualized habit of watching Monday Night Football together while eating homemade pasta" while at Iowa. Irving's review of The Stories of John Cheever had been published in The Saturday Review the previous month. In it, Irving says, "There is not only the wonder of finishing one good story after another, there is that cumulative weight, that sense of deepening, that I have formerly associated only with the consecutiveness of a true (and truly narrative) novel...John Cheever is the best storyteller living; he practices what he preaches better than any of us, and we believe him when he writes, 'We can cherish nothing less than our random understanding of death and the earth-shaking love that draws us to one another.'" Winner of the National Book Critics Circle Award and the Pulitzer Prize (for which, ironically, it beat out Irving's own The World According to Garp). Both The Stories of John Cheever and The World According to Garp won National Book Awards when published in paperback: Garp in 1980 and Stories in 1981. A little play to the text block; a near fine copy in a very good, spine-sunned dust jacket with a small chip at the crown. Card of Knopf publicity director laid in. A wonderful association copy of a landmark volume. [#031673] SOLD
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