Rare Book Monthly

Book Catalogue Reviews - March - 2012 Issue

Literature and More from B&B Rare Books

B&b2011

Literature and more from B&B Rare Books.

We have received, perhaps slightly late, the Fall/Winter 2011 catalogue from B&B Rare Books of New York. B&B describes its specialties as “18th-20th century American and English literature, poetry, mystery, and detective fiction, and early 20th century children's literature.” We will add that many items within this catalogue are signed or inscribed. The catalogue also notes that “B&B” are Joshua Mann and Sunday Steinkirchner. Hm... hard to figure that one. Maybe bookseller and bookseller? Well, let's take a look inside at a few of the books B&B is offering.

Henry David Thoreau is a man hard to peg by today, or even his own day's standards. Perhaps iconoclast is as close as we can come. He was certainly one of the earliest environmentalists, and a vehement supporter of abolition. That might place him on one side of today's political spectrum, but he was also a strong individualist, a man who appreciated being left alone, and wanted as little government involvement with his life as possible. His individualist/environmentalist nature can be found in his most famous book, written while he isolated himself from most of society: Walden; Or, Life in the Woods. One can only imagine how he might feel about Walden Pond today, where civilization has long since eroded any sense of being alone. Item 67 is a first edition of Thoreau's premier book, published in 1854. Priced at $13,500.

A man who inhabited a world as different from Thoreau's as night and day was F. Scott Fitzgerald. He aspired to the world of the beautiful people in the 1920s and made it there on the strength of his writing. With the 1930s, life became tougher for Fitzgerald. His wife drifted off into insanity, his financial fortunes never quite kept up with his needs. He turned to screenwriting in the late 1930s to supplement his income, and that gave him the insights into Hollywood that provided material for his final novel, The Last Tycoon. Item 20 is a first edition, first issue from 1941. The novel is unfinished. Fitzgerald, whose heavy drinking had ravaged his health, suffered a heart attack and died in late 1940 at the age of 44, his last novel as yet incomplete. $4,000.

When Charles Lutwidge Dodgson, better know to most by his pen-name Lewis Carroll, first published his tale about Alice and her adventures in Wonderland in 1865, he was essentially an unknown photographer and mathematician. Two decades later, he was a very popular writer, appreciated by both children and adults for his story about Alice and her illogically logical world. It was at that time that Carroll came up with the idea of publishing a facsimile edition of his original manuscript of Alice. This he had published in 1886, using what had been his original title for the book, Alice's Adventures Under Ground. Item 8 is a copy of this facsimile book, inscribed, as he usually did, “from the Author,” in purple ink. $6,000.

Item 38 is an advance issue of Ernest Hemingway's 1950 novel Across the River and Into the Trees. It is one of 25 copies bound for presentation. This one was inscribed and presented by Hemingway to journalist Ben Meyer, who had traveled to Cuba to interview Hemingway. The inscription is dated “21/8/50,” three weeks prior to the book's publication. Meyer had written that Hemingway was quite pleased with how this book turned out, though the critical reviews were not very supportive of the author's view. Hemingway evidently remained in contact with Meyer over the years, as this copy of his book comes with a letter from Mary Hemingway to Meyer in 1958 thanking him for some photographs. $50,000.

Rare Book Monthly

  • <b>Bonhams, Jun 13 results:</b> Darwin, Charles. <i>On the Origin of Species.</i> Presentation Copy. Sold for $500,075.
    <b>Bonhams, Jun 13 results:</b> Darwin, Charles. Autograph Letter Signed, 3 pp, negotiating the 2nd American edition with Appleton. Sold for $21,325.
    <b>Bonhams, Jun 13 results:</b> Hemingway, Ernest. Autograph Letter Signed, 8 pp, Paris, 1924, to his father discussing Bullfighting, Stories, and his new baby. Sold for $25,075.
    <b>Bonhams, Jun 13 results:</b> Shakespeare, William. <i>Corialanus.</i> London, 1623. 1st printing [Extracted from the First Folio]. Sold for $50,075.
    <b>Bonhams, Jun 13 results:</b> Swift, Jonathan. <i>Gulliver's Travels.</i> London, 1726. 1st edition, Teerink's A edition, fine, large copy. Sold for $21,325.
    <b>Bonhams, Jun 13 results:</b> Fitzroy, Robert. Autograph Letter Signed to agent Thomas Stilwell, informing him of the progress of H.M.S. Beagle. Sold for $17,575.
    <center><b>Bonhams<br> Property from the Collection of Nicole and William R. Keck II</b>
    <b>Bonhams, Jun 13 results:</b> Shakespeare, William. <i>Sonnets.</i> 1901. 2 volumes. Printed on vellum and illuminated by Ross Turner, bound by Trautz-Bauzonnet. Sold for $13,825.
    <b>Bonhams, Jun 13 results:</b> Beardsley, Aubrey. <i>The Birth, Life, and Acts of King Arthur.</i> 1893-94. 2 volumes. Contemporary painted vellum gilt by Chivers. Sold for $5,325.
    <b>Bonhams, Jun 13 results:</b> Assisi, St. Francis. <i>The Canticle of Brother Sun.</i> Illuminated on vellum, for the Grolier Society. Sold for $7,575.
    <b>Bonhams, Jun 13 results:</b> Rackham, Arthur. <i>Peter Pan in Kensington Gardens.</i> 1/500 copies signed by Rackham. Sold for $4,825.
    <b>Bonhams, Jun 13 results:</b> Proust, Marcel. <i>Du coté de chez Swann.</i> 1st edition, 1st issue. Inscribed by Proust. Sold for $8,825.
  • <b>Swann Auction Galleries Aug 7:</b> Sergio Trujillo Magnenat, <i>Bogotá 1938 / IV Centenario / Juegos Deportivos Bolivarianos,</i> 1938. $2,000 to $3,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Aug 7:</b> <i>McQueen Drives Porsche,</i> designer unknown, 1970. $800 to $1,200.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Aug 7:</b><br>Joe Bridge, <i>Bignan / A Des Ailes,</i> 1921. $5,000 to $7,500.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Aug 7:</b> Graham Simmons, <i>The Army Isn’t All Work,</i> 1919. $1,000 to $1,500.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Aug 7:</b> Leonetto Cappiello, <i>Je ne fume que le nil,</i> 1912. $800 to $1,200.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Aug 7:</b> <i>Attack of the 50 ft. Woman,</i> designer unknown, 1958. $3,000 to $4,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Aug 7:</b> Raymond Tooby, <i>Festival Guiness / Have You Tried One Yet?,</i> 1952. $600 to $900.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Aug 7:</b> Francisco Tamagno, <i>Terrot & Co. / Dijon / Cycles Motorettes,</i> 1909. $2,000 to $3,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Aug 7:</b><br>A. Hori, Oakland / General Motors, circa 1925. $3,000 to $4,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Aug 7:</b> James Montgomery Flagg, <i>Travel? Adventure? Answer – Join the Marines!,</i> circa 1918. $4,000 to $6,000.
  • <b>Lark Mason Associates, Aug 8-27:</b> Roberts, David. Twenty Lithographs of the Holy Land, 19th Century. $2,000 to $4,000.
    <b>Lark Mason Associates, Aug 8-27:</b> Declaration by the Reps. of the United Colonies of N.A. 1775. $8,000 to $12,000.
    <b>Lark Mason Associates, Aug 8-27:</b> Composer Jerome Kern personal Letters, Albums and Other. $15,000 to $25,000.
    <b>Lark Mason Associates, Aug 8-27:</b> Paine, Thomas. <i>Common Sense,</i> London 1776. $8,000 to $12,000.
    <b>Lark Mason Associates, Aug 8-27:</b> Stowe, Harriet Beecher. <i>Uncle Tom’s Cabin,</i> Cleveland 1852. $4,000 to $6,000.
    <b>Lark Mason Associates, Aug 8-27:</b> Hobbes, Thomas. <i>Leviathan,</i> 3rd edition, London 1651. $2,000 to $3,000.
    <b>Lark Mason Associates, Aug 8-27:</b> Anno Regni Georgii III. Intolerable Acts and other Bills, 1774. $15,000 to $20,000.
    <b>Lark Mason Associates, Aug 8-27:</b> Wilberforce, William. An Abstract of the Evidence, 5 Letters, and two books. $6,000 to $9,000.
    <b>Lark Mason Associates, Aug 8-27:</b> Nightingale, Florence. Notes on Nursing and Signed Letters, ca. 1860 $4,000 to $6,000.
    <b>Lark Mason Associates, Aug 8-27:</b> Tolstov, Leo. <i>War and Peace,</i> 5 volumes, 1886. $3,000 to $5,000.
    <b>Lark Mason Associates, Aug 8-27:</b> Dickinson, John. Letters from a Farmer in Pennsylvania, 1768. $1,500 to $2,500.
    <b>Lark Mason Associates, Aug 8-27:</b> Twain, Mark. <i>Tom Sawyer,</i> 1877 [and] <i>Huckleberry Finn,</i> 1885. $4,000 to $6,000.

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