Twain, Tarzan, and Everything Else from The Heritage Book Shop
Item 29 may not be considered one of the greatest books ever written, but it certainly turned out to be a great investment for those who bought it new. The book is Tarzan of the Apes, by Edgar Rice Burroughs, and this first edition, first state was published in 1914. It comes complete with the rare original color dust jacket. For those who have forgotten, Tarzan was the scion of British nobility, lost in the jungles of darkest Africa, raised by apes. In time, he is found and forced to confront the choice between "civilized" society and the ape world. Neither choice is particularly appealing. This is not a true story. It is not history. This is fiction, and not of the particularly believable sort. However, this odd story has managed to appeal to numerous generations, and recently hit the big screen again with the backing of the Disney Company. Tarzan endures. This copy comes with two letters, one a 1948 thank you note from Burroughs, the other a 1949 typed note signed on Burroughs behalf by his secretary. Both came from Tarzana, California, and yes, Tarzana was named after the one and only King of the Apes. Californians are different. $55,000.
I'm not aware of any cities being named after Pinocchio. Perhaps somewhere in Italy. Nonetheless, Pinocchio can put even Tarzan to shame. Item 47 is an 1883 first edition of Le Avventure di Pinocchio, by Carlo Collodi. For the record, this one too is a piece of fiction. Perhaps it's a bit wooden, but it still retains its youthful charm. And the value of this book exceeds even Tarzan. $75,000.
The Heritage Book Shop can be located online at www.heritagebookshop.com or reached by phone at 310-659-3674.