Catalog 157, C-D
41. CAPOTE, Truman. Autograph Letter Signed to John Berendt. Undated. . Burroughs responds to John Berendt, who had written to Capote in his capacity as Associate Editor at Esquire Magazine, inquiring as to whom Capote would like to have portray him in a hypothetical film biography. Capote says that several stars have discussed the matter with him and names Peter Lorre and Humphrey Bogart (both deceased by the time of this writing, and both claimed by Capote as close friends) and settles on Jean-Paul Belmondo on the basis that Norman Mailer once called him, Capote, "a very ballsy little guy" and, Capote writes, "it is my understanding that Monsieur Belmondo is a very ballsy little guy, too..." Belmondo was, at the time, one of the great heart throbs and male sex symbols in the movies, and Capote is obviously having fun imagining himself portrayed by such a figure. Philip Seymour Hoffman played Capote in the 2005 biopic, Capote, for which Hoffman won an Oscar. Capote was also played by Toby Jones in the 2006 film Infamous about Capote's relationships with the killers he wrote about in In Cold Blood, his true crime "nonfiction novel." The year after this letter, that book would reach number one on the New York Times bestseller list; and 31 years later, Berendt's own true crime nonfiction novel, Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil, achieved the same distinction. The letter is signed, "T. Capote." About 125 words; two pages, double-spaced on legal sized paper. Folded for mailing, else fine.
42. CARSON, Rachel. Food from the Sea: Fish and Shellfish of New England. Washington, D.C.: U.S. Department of the Interior, 1943. A 74-page booklet written by Carson in her position as aquatic biologist for the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. The first of four such Conservation Bulletins Carson wrote, each focusing on a different geographic region. Small owner name (Leo Shapovalov) stamped to front cover. Shapovalov was at one point the editor of California Fish and Game. Shallow midline crease to booklet and a few edge tears; very good in stapled wrappers.
43. (CARSON, Rachel). "How About Citizenship Papers for the Starlings?" in Nature Magazine. (Washington, D.C.): (American Nature Association), 1939. A 3-page article in which Carson argues that starlings, introduced to the U.S. nearly 50 years prior, are more than earning their keep. Eugene Scheiffelin, head of the American Acclimatization Society, introduced two flocks into Central Park, one in 1890 and one in 1891; his motive (not mentioned by Carson) was a desire to import every bird ever mentioned in a work by Shakespeare (in the case of the starlings, one mention, in Henry IV.) This issue (June-July) is here bound together with the issues for the remainder of 1939, in a hand-lettered university library binding (with "discard" stamp inside front cover and circulation pocket at rear). The Carson issue is fine; the binding has a corner bump and is very good. A scarce Carson appearance.
44. CARVER, Raymond. Will You Please Be Quiet, Please? NY: McGraw-Hill, 1976. Carver's breakthrough book of short stories, his first book published by a major publisher and one of the most influential books in the renaissance of the short story form in the 1970s and beyond. Carver's stories were compared to those of Hemingway and Flannery O'Connor. Inscribed by the author in 1987. Trace top edge foxing, else fine in a very near fine dust jacket with a small bit of dampening visible on verso. A very nice copy of this landmark collection.
45. CARVER, Raymond. Cathedral. NY: Knopf, 1983. A review copy of his third collection of stories to be published by a major trade publisher, and a major literary event that confirmed Carver's preeminent place among American short story writers of the day and signaled a full-fledged resuscitation of the short story in American literature. Signed by the author in 1987. Fine in a fine dust jacket, with review slip and promotional postcard laid in.
46. (CARVER, Raymond). Best Little Magazine Fiction 1970. NY: New York University Press, 1970. The scarce hardcover issue of this uncommon volume, edited by Curt Johnson, publisher of the little magazine December, where some of Carver's earliest fiction was published in the 1960s. Includes "Sixty Acres" by Carver, his second story to be anthologized (Stull B2). Also includes work by Joyce Carol Oates and the first work of fiction by Rick DeMarinis, among others. Fine in a very good, rubbed dust jacket.
47. -. Another copy. Near fine in a very good, rubbed, price-clipped dust jacket.
48. CASTILLO, Ana. The Mixquiahuala Letters. Binghampton: Bilingual Press (1986). The first novel (after several poetry books) by the author of My Father was a Toltec. An epistolary novel for which the author proposes three different routes through the text, none of them in strict conformance with a straight reading. Inscribed by the author to the poet Ai in 1987, in part: "As someone once said to Walt Whitman in a dedication, 'from a less poet'." This is the simultaneous issue in wrappers; tiny foredge nick, else fine. A nice association copy of an uncommon book. Ai won the National Book Award for Vice.
49. CHILD, Lee. The Affair. NY: Delacorte Press (2100). The sixteenth novel in the bestselling series of thrillers featuring Jack Reacher. This book is the "prequel" to the series, explaining parts of Reacher's past only alluded to in the other books. Signed by the author. Fine in a fine dust jacket with a small "signed copy" sticker on the front panel.
50. COETZEE, J.M. Typed Letter Signed. February 20, 1969. A letter by Coetzee written in his capacity as Associate Professor of English at the State University of New York at Buffalo, five years prior to the publication of Dusklands, his first book. Addressed to Mr. Reik of the Committee for Biafran Writers and Artists and inquiring about a U.S. tour by Nigerian writers Chinua Achebe, Cyprian Ekwensi, and Gabriel Okara. Coetzee seems particularly interested in Okara's visiting SUNY, asking about his schedule and honorarium, but adds, "I must assure you that we would feel most honored to have any of the three writers speak to us." He also inquires as to whether the purpose of the tour is to raise funds for Biafra (which had seceded from Nigeria in 1967). Signed by Coetzee. Approximately 125 words; one phone number and four other digits (extension?) written in pencil; folded in thirds for mailing; else fine. A very early piece by Coetzee, predating his published writing career yet still deeply engaged with writing, writers and literature.
51. COETZEE, J.M. Life & Times of Michael K. London: Secker & Warburg (1983). The first British edition of the first Booker Prize-winning novel by the South African Nobel Prize-winning author. Signed by the author in 1991. Fine in a fine dust jacket.
52. CREWS, Harry. The Gospel Singer. NY: Morrow, 1968. His first novel, which had a first printing of only 4000 copies. Crews resuscitated the Southern gothic tradition in the late 1960s and 1970s, picking up the mantle from such writers as Flannery O'Connor and, earlier, William Faulkner. His string of novels that includes Karate is a Thing of the Spirit, Car, Naked in Garden Hills, This Thing Don't Lead to Heaven, The Gypsy's Curse, and others defined a sensibility at once rough-edged, sad, and hilarious -- steeped in the comic and grotesque tradition that had permeated southern fiction and had given it its distinctive flavor. Signed by the author in 1969 at Bread Loaf Writer's Conference. Fading to pastedowns, as is typical for this title; small label partially removed from front flyleaf; near fine in a fine dust jacket. A nice copy of the first book by one of the unique voices in American fiction.
53. CRUMB, R. Zap Comix, No. 1. (n.p.): (Apex)(1967). The first issue of the archetypal underground comic magazine of the Sixties, which featured the most noted comic artists -- R. Crumb, S. Clay Wilson, Rick Griffin, and a host of others -- and some of the most memorable characters: Mr. Natural, the Fabulous Furry Freak Brothers, Wonder Wart Hog, etc. This first issue of Zap was done completely by Crumb. This is the rare first printing, printed by Charles Plymell, the Beat poet and collagist. The print run for the first printing has been stated at 5000, in a comic reference guide, and at 1500 by Pam Plymell, Charles's wife. Mild acidification to pages as is inevitable for all copies of this comic; one stray 1/4" pen mark lower outer corner; else fine in stapled wrappers. The grading of comic books uses different standards than grading books, and underground comics in particular are the outliers of the comic world, having perhaps as many similarities with such fields as Beat and counterculture literature as they share with traditional comic books. That being said, they are bought, sold, graded and collected in the comic book market as well as the literary market. According to comic standards, this copy would be in the range of "Very Fine/Near Mint" (approximately 9.0 on a scale of 10) and possibly even better. A 9.4 copy of Zap #1 brought $26,000 at auction in 2010; copies in significantly worse condition than this one have sold for over $5000 for a number of years now. Zap #1 belongs to that rarified group of comics that ushered in a new era: Action Comics #1, which introduced Superman, sold in December 2011 for $2.1 million and Amazing Fantasy #15, a Holy Grail for comics collectors as the first appearance of Spider-Man, is currently valued at around $100,000 in comparable (9.0) condition. Many comic collectors and dealers have speculated that the $26,000 Zap #1 brought at auction will look inexpensive in the near future, based on its rarity, importance, and condition, if the underground comic prices catch up to mainstream comics. The comparison of the Spider-Man comic with Zap is appropriate in that they both date from the 1960s, whereas Action #1 dates from the 1930s. An attractive copy of the most recognizable underground comic of the 1960s, seldom found in this condition.
54. DAVENPORT, Guy. Archive of Correspondence, 1960-1966. A collection of letters and postcards from Davenport to a young man whom he took a liking to and to whom he became something of a mentor. 68 pieces of correspondence, all but four of them dating from 1960-1962. 37 letters (20 autograph letters signed and 17 typed letters signed); 30 postcards; one holiday card. The 37 letters amount to 71 pages, making the total page count of the archive 102, almost all of it concentrated in three years. All but two envelopes are present for the letters. Davenport's correspondence, which begins from his father's home in Anderson, South Carolina, in mid-summer 1960, is full of both personal detail ("I know of no moment of life in which I have not been aware of sexual desire...Not that I've had a heck of a lot of sex...") and literary content, and exhibits his prodigious and formidable intellect and education: "...Daddy & I sprawled in deck chairs under the elms and swapped Old Sea Tales; I performed from the Scriptures in Greek, from the Chronicle in Anglo-Saxon -- not a word of which the parent understood: it soothes him to hear tangible evidence of his poor son's education..." He recommends books to his friend, having given him a copy of "T.E." [Lawrence] prior to the first letter, and recommends Samuel Beckett. He is steeped in literature and the literary world, and at one point provides a letter of introduction for his correspondent to Ezra Pound. Rich in biographical detail -- he mentions "trying to talk my rich brother-in-law into backing me for an ultra-private, supersonic prep school here in the Confederacy [an old desire of mine]: with solid courses -- Latin at 7; Greek at 8; mathematics; strict English composition; the modern languages; history and philosophy; ALL natural history; in short, an attempt at the curriculum laid out by J. Ruskin in Fors Clavigera modified by Pound and Davenport. Much sports -- real sports that are enjoyable (horses, bicycles, olympic doings; boxing wrestling, and so on). Statues of Agassiz, Ruskin, and Aristotle on the lawn. Jefferson, Adams, Van Buren and Pound in my office..." The handwritten letters are composed in an elegant print style that calls to mind Davenport's accomplishment as an artist; they are as composed and coherent visually as they are intellectually. A remarkable cache of original writing by one of the most erudite American men of letters.
55. DAVIES, Robertson. Canadian Nationalism in Arts and Science. (n.p.): Royal Society of Canada, 1975. An offprint of an address Davies gave at a symposium on the title subject. Inscribed by Davies to Elizabeth Sifton, his American publisher, "with good wishes." Sifton published the American editions of The Papers of Samuel Marchbanks and What's Bred in the Bone under her imprint at Viking Press in the 1980s. 10 pages, stapled. Fine. An uncommon pamphlet on a subject close to the author's heart, with a good association inscription to his American publisher.
56. DELILLO, Don. The Day Room. NY: Knopf, 1987. DeLillo's first produced play, in which the figure and ground of reality and unreality repeatedly reverse. Signed by the author. Fine in a fine dust jacket. Originally published in American Theater in 1986.
57. DELILLO, Don. Underworld [Pafko at the Wall]. [London]: Picador (1998). An advance excerpt of the British edition of Underworld, printing the prologue, here called "The Triumph of Death," which was later published as the novella Pafko at the Wall, in 2001, to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the Giants' victory over the Dodgers in the 1951 pennant race. As such, this advance excerpt is the first separate appearance of Pafko. Fine in wrappers.
58. DELILLO, Don. The Angel Esmeralda. NY: Scribner (2011). A collection of nine stories spanning 1979-2011. Signed by the author. Fine in a fine dust jacket.
59. (DELILLO, Don). "Spaghetti and Meatballs" in Epoch, Vol. 14, No. 3. (Ithaca): (Cornell)(1965). A short story, his third appearance in Epoch, and preceding his first book by six years. Small corner stain and spine sunned; about near fine in stapled wrappers.
60. DE VRIES, Peter. But Who Wakes the Bugler? Boston: Houghton Mifflin, 1940. The first book by the longtime New Yorker humorist. Warmly inscribed by the author, "recalling a most delightful and all too brief vacation," and signed "Peter." Top stain faded and a bit of play to the binding; still a near fine copy in a very good dust jacket chipped at the spine ends and with the pink faded from the spine. The book and jacket are illustrated by Charles Addams, who later gained fame as creator of "The Addams Family"; this is a very early appearance of his artwork. An uncommon first book, especially scarce signed.
61. (DIAZ, Junot). Las Christmas. NY: Knopf, 1998. The uncorrected proof copy of a collection of holiday memories by Latino authors, including Diaz, Julia Alvarez, Francisco Goldman, Sandra Cisneros, Jaime Manrique, Piri Thomas, Gary Soto, Michael Nava and many others. Also includes numerous recipes for holiday treats, provided by the contributors. Diaz's contribution, "The Three Kings Lose Their Way," first appeared in Si magazine. Quarto; fine in wrappers.
62. DICK, Philip K. A Scanner Darkly. Garden City: Doubleday, 1977. By consensus one of Dick's best books, and one of the greatest drug novels of all time. Admirably filmed by Richard Linklater with Keanu Reeves, Winona Ryder and Robert Downey Jr. playing the key roles. Dick's novel is set in southern California in 1994 -- the "near future" at the time the book came out -- and concerns drug use, paranoia, the loss of identity, and the shifting nature of reality. Dick himself had been a heavy user of drugs in the 1960s and early 1970s, and he claimed that everything in this novel were things he had seen or experienced firsthand. Signed by the author. Remainder speckling to lower edge of text block and some light smudges to the boards, otherwise a fine copy in a very near fine dust jacket with some specks to the rear panel. A nice copy of an important book, seldom found signed.
63. DILLARD, Annie. Living By Fiction. NY: Harper & Row (1982). Reflections on writers and writing, in particular the postmodern literature of the Latin American and European avant garde, and such North American writers as Pynchon, Barth and Coover. A single, coherent, extended essay, rather than a collection of independent pieces. Inscribed by Dillard to her agent, Tim Seldes, and his wife, the author Susan Shreve. Spine ends pushed, else fine in a very good, price-clipped and spine-sunned dust jacket with several small edge chips. A nice association copy.
64. DILLARD, Annie. Teaching a Stone to Talk. NY: Harper & Row (1982). A collection of essays by the Pulitzer Prize-winning author of Pilgrim at Tinker Creek. Inscribed by Dillard to her agent, Tim Seldes, and his wife, the author Susan Shreve. Fine in a very good, mildly spine-sunned dust jacket with several short edge tears and a small chip at the upper rear panel.
65. DILLARD, Annie. An American Childhood. NY: Harper & Row (1987). A later printing of this memoir of growing up in Pittsburgh. Inscribed by the author to her "dear friends," her agent, Tim Seldes and his wife, Susan Shreve. A touch of dampstaining to lower outer corner of the boards and text block; near fine in a near fine, slightly edge-creased dust jacket.
66. DILLARD, Annie. The Writing Life. NY: Harper & Row (1989). A book about writing, with Dillard's characteristic ability to notice details and to ask provocative questions. Inscribed by Dillard to her agent Tim Seldes and his wife, Susan Shreve. Fine in a very near fine dust jacket with a slight degree of sunning to the spine.
67. DUBUS, Andre. The Lieutenant. NY: Dial, 1967. His first book, and his only novel -- a military tale not unlike William Styron's book The Long March -- a story of the peacetime military and the challenges to manhood and honor that its rigid code of morals creates. Dubus was once quoted as saying that after he wrote this novel someone introduced him to Chekhov's short stories, and he threw away the manuscript of what was to be his next novel and began writing short fiction -- of which he became one of our most acclaimed and accomplished practitioners. This copy is stamped "Sale" on the front flyleaf, but is otherwise fine in a fine, price-clipped dust jacket with a speck of rubbing on the rear panel. A very sharp copy of a book that seldom turns up in this condition.
68. DUBUS, Andre. Blessings. Elmwood: Raven Editions, 1987. An attractive limited edition and the first separate edition of this story, expanded from its magazine publication back to its intended length. Designed and printed letterpress by Carol Blinn of Warwick Press, who also made the paste paper decorating the boards, this is one of 10 presentation copies, this copy having belonged to Blinn herself. Quarterbound in leather stamped in gilt; only the presentation issue was so bound. Signed by Dubus and also signed by Blinn on the colophon. Fine. By far the most attractive of Dubus' limited editions.
69. DUNN, Katherine. Geek Love. NY: Knopf, 1989. The uncorrected proof copy of her breakthrough novel, a critically well-received story of a carnival family, told in the voice of an albino hunchback dwarf. Spine faded; near fine in wrappers.