Rare Book Monthly

Book Catalogue Reviews - December - 2017 Issue

Books for the Young from Aleph-Bet Books

C0b39e45-b74f-4002-83e1-f5eada901d87

Books for children.

Aleph-Bet Books has released their Catalogue 116 of Children's Books & Illustrated Books. Those two types are rarely an either or – virtually everything here is both for children and illustrated. These catalogues are always filled with wonder, an opportunity for children to let their imaginations run wild. Of course, they are also mostly filled with messages and instructions from adults, and those run the gamut of values held by our elders. Many are positive, some filled with ugly prejudices adults can hold. No wonder we have ended up so divided. Here are a few of these books from which we taught our young in earlier times.

 

We begin with a tale of small events having large consequences: Because a Little Bug Went Ka-Choo! It is a story of a little bug who sneezes, resulting in an outsized cause and effect. It ends up toppling a turtle, sinking a ship, and disrupting a parade. The author was Rosetta Stone. Who? That name sounds a bit suspicious. It is. It is rather obscure, but the author of this 1975 book was actually the inimitable Dr. Seuss. He wrote many books pseudonymously as "Theo LeSieg" ("LeSieg" being his actual last name of Geisel spelled backwards), but he only wrote this one book as Rosetta Stone. As with his LeSieg books, the master of children's illustrations did not illustrate this book, he only wrote it. Michael Frith, who soon after this book began doing much creative work for Jim Henson and his Muppets, was the illustrator. This copy is a first printing of the first edition in near fine condition. Item 268. Priced at $1,750.

 

This is the final book in one of the most beloved of children's series, the adventures of Curious George. George is, off course, the mischievous monkey who lived with the Man with the Yellow Hat. This one is titled Curious George Goes to the Hospital, and its background is different from George's other tales. Sending George to the hospital sounds like a bad idea, not a good place to get into mischief, but this book was a cooperative project with the Children's Hospital Medical Center, Boston. The idea behind the book was to ease the way for nervous children who had to undergo hospitalization. In the story, George swallows a puzzle piece thinking it is candy. He becomes ill, goes to the hospital, and after an x-ray reveals the problem, undergoes surgery. While recovering, he manages to get into a wheelchair which he crashes into a food cart. It makes even the saddest of the children in the hospital laugh. This is a fine copy of the first printing from 1966 in the dust jacket. It is inscribed by "The Reys," those being H. A. and Margaret Rey. There is also a small color drawing of George holding a flower next to the inscription to one of the doctors. It is additionally inscribed by another of the doctors, who according to the previous owner (unverified), collaborated with the Reys in writing the book. Item 248. $6,000.

 

Item 182 began a short but enormously popular series of children's books. It is the first of the Pooh books, When We Were Very Young. It was published in 1924. This is one of the limited edition copies of the first edition, one of 100 copies printed on hand-made paper. It is signed by both author A. A. Milne and illustrator E. H. Shepard. $9,500.

 

The Pooh books represented the gentlest and best of sentiments we could give our children. This next one is not so nice. The title is Pickaninny ABC, a 1905 Dean Rag Book. It is printed on cloth with illustrations by Vernon Edward Barrett. As an alphabet book, it includes illustrations for each letter, with a brief "stands for" comment. The illustrations are exaggerated, ugly stereotypical drawings of black people. Some of the sayings are unpleasant too, with "A" standing for Alabama Coon, and "W" for watermelon. Item 2. $1,200.

 

This one is even worse. Rather than just ridiculing a race, it was intended to generate hatred within its young audience. Item 196 is Der Giftpilz (the Poisoned Mushroom), by Ernest Hiemer, published in 1938. Hiemer wrote virulently anti-Semitic children's books on behalf of the notorious Nazi propaganda newspaper, Sturmer. This book displays hideous stereotyped Jews acting evilly towards clean-cut German youth. The Jews mistreat children and servants, torture animals, and bake matzoh with the blood of kidnapped Christian children. This copy has three three Dutch anti-Semitic stickers attached, reading "Make the Netherlands free from Jews," "Combat the Jewish influence," and "Whoever buys from Jews hates his own people." $6,000.

 

Item 91 is the first paper doll book printed in America. It was published in 1812 by J. Belcher of Boston, based on an 1810 British book. It tells seven stories of the travails of poor Henry, with cut-out clothes to be applied to Henry for each story. It begins with Henry being stolen by Gypsies, which is a story line we would not use today. He becomes a beggar, servant of a mean chimney sweep, drummer, sailor, and eventually a midshipman. His outfits match his various stations in life. $8,750.

 

Aleph-Bet Books may be reached at 914-764-7410 or Helen@alephbet.com. Their website is found at www.alephbet.com.

Rare Book Monthly

  • <center><b>Doyle<br>Fine Literature<br>September 30</b>
    <b>Doyle, Fine Literature:</b> WHITMAN, WALT. <i>Leaves of Grass.</i> First Edition. $150,000 to $250,000.
    <b>Doyle, Fine Literature:</b> MILNE, A.A. and SHEPARD, E.H. <i>Now We Are Six.</i> $10,000 to $15,000.
    <b>Doyle, Fine Literature:</b> HEMINGWAY, ERNEST. <i>A Farewell to Arms.</i> $7,000 to $10,000.
    <b>Doyle, Fine Literature:</b> NABOKOV, VLADIMIR. <i>Lolita.</i> First American Edition. $5,000 to $8,000.
    <center><b>Doyle<br>Fine Literature<br>September 30</b>
    <b>Doyle, Fine Literature:</b> RAND, AYN. <i>Atlas Shrugged.</i> $3,000 to $5,000.
    <b>Doyle, Fine Literature:</b> STEINBECK, JOHN. <i>To a God Unknown.</i> First Edition. $1,500 to $2,500.
    <b>Doyle, Fine Literature:</b> WELLS, H.G. <i>The Works of H.G. Wells.</i> $4,000 to $6,000.
    <center><b>We Invite You to Consign!<br>Rare Books, Autographs & Maps</b>
  • <center><b>Hindman Auctions<br>Selections from the Library of<br>Gerald and Barbara Weiner<br>Live and Online<br>October 8, 2020 / 10am CT</b>
    <b>Hindman Auctions, Oct. 8:</b> DARWIN, Charles Robert. <i>On the Origin of Species by Means of Natural Selection.</i> London: W. Clowes and Sons for John Murray, 1859. [With] autograph note signed. $60,000 to $80,000.
    <b>Hindman Auctions, Oct. 8:</b> [FINE PRESS & LIVRE D'ARTISTE]. -- [KELMSCOTT PRESS]. CHAUCER, Geoffrey. <i>The Works ... now newly imprinted.</i> Edited by F.S. Ellis. Hammersmith: Kelmscott Press, 1896. $60,000 to $80,000.
    <b>Hindman Auctions, Oct. 8:</b> LAWRENCE, Thomas Edward. <i>Seven Pillars of Wisdom, a triumph.</i> [London: Privately Printed], 1926. $60,000 to $80,000.
    <center><b>Hindman Auctions<br>Selections from the Library of<br>Gerald and Barbara Weiner<br>Live and Online<br>October 8, 2020 / 10am CT</b>
    <b>Hindman Auctions, Oct. 8:</b> SHAKESPEARE, William. <i>Mr. William Shakespear's Comedies, Histories, and Tragedies…</i> London, Printed for H. Herringman, E. Brewster, R. Chiswell, and R. Bentley, 1685. $60,000 to $80,000.
    <b>Hindman Auctions, Oct. 8:</b> AUDUBON, John James. <i>The Birds of America…</i> [1839-] 1840-1844. -- AUDUBON, John James and John BACHMAN. <i>The Quadrupeds of North America.</i> 1849-1854. $60,000 to $80,000.
    <b>Hindman Auctions, Oct. 8:</b> OGILBY, John, trans. [MONTANUS, Arnoldus]. <i>America: being the latest, and most Accurate Description of the New World…</i> London: Printed by the Author, 1671. $30,000 to $40,000.
    <center><b>Hindman Auctions<br>Selections from the Library of<br>Gerald and Barbara Weiner<br>Live and Online<br>October 8, 2020 / 10am CT</b>
    <b>Hindman Auctions, Oct. 8:</b> HOBBES, Thomas. <i>Leviathan, or The Matter, Forme, & Power of a Common-Wealth Ecclesiasticall and Civill.</i> London: printed for Andrew Crooke, 1651. $20,000 to $30,000.
    <b>Hindman Auctions, Oct. 8:</b> BLACKWELL, Elizabeth. <i>A Curious Herbal, containing Five Hundred Cuts of the most useful Plant which are now used in the Practice of Physick…</i> London: John Nourse, 1739. $15,000 to $20,000.
    <b>Hindman Auctions, Oct. 8:</b> MILTON, John. <i>Paradise Lost.</i> London: Printed by S. Simmons ... to be sold by T. Helder, 1669. $12,000 to $18,000.
    <center><b>Hindman Auctions<br>Selections from the Library of<br>Gerald and Barbara Weiner<br>Live and Online<br>October 8, 2020 / 10am CT</b>
    <b>Hindman Auctions, Oct. 8:</b> MALCOLM X. Typed letter signed ("Malcolm X"), to Alex Haley. Cairo, Egypt, 18 September 1964. " 1 page, 8vo. $6,000 to $8,000.
    <b>Hindman Auctions, Oct. 8:</b> TOLKIEN, John Ronald Reuel. Autograph letter signed (“JRRT”). To George Sayer, Oxford, 7 August 1952. 2 pages, 8vo, creased; morocco folding case. $4,000 to $6,000.
    <b>Hindman Auctions, Oct. 8:</b> WRIGHT, Frank Lloyd. Autograph manuscript signed ("Frank Lloyd Wright"), entitled "To the Countryside." N.p. [Taliesin?], [June 1926]. 2 pages, 4to, creased. $4,000 to $6,000.
  • <b>Swann Auction Galleries Oct 15:</b> Paul George Lawler, <i>San Francisco – Hawaii Overnight,</i> 1939. $10,000 to $15,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Oct 15:</b> Around the World, <i>North German Lloyd,</i> designer unknown, circa 1910. $800 to $1,200.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Oct 15:</b> Michael Rudolf Wening, <i>Siam,</i> circa 1920s. $2,000 to $3,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Oct 15:</b> Sigismunds Vidbergs, <i>Spend Your Holidays at the Wonderful Seaside of Riga,</i> circa 1925. $1,200 to $1,800.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Oct 15:</b> Jean Dupas, <i>“Where is this Bower Beside the Silver Thames?”</i> 1930. $15,000 to $20,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Oct 15:</b> Charles-Léonce Brossé, <i>Meeting d’Aviation, Nice,</i> 1910. $10,000 to $15,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Oct 15:</b> John Held Jr., <i>Nantucket,</i> 1925. $6,000 to $9,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Oct 15:</b> Seaverns W. Hilton, <i>Lewis and Clark, Northern Pacific,</i> 1920. $2,000 to $3,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Oct 15:</b> Fred Powis, <i>Jasper, Canadian National Railways.</i> $2,000 to $3,000.
  • <center><b>Arader Galleries<br>October Sale<br>October 10, 2020</b>
    <b>Arader Galleries, Oct. 10:</b> LA HARPE, Jean-Baptiste Benard de. 'CARTE NOUVELLE DE LA PARTIE DE L'OUEST DE LA LOUISIANNE'. $800,000 to $1,200,000.
    <b>Arader Galleries, Oct. 10:</b> AUDUBON, John James. Great Blue Heron, Plate 211. $250,000 to $350,000.
    <b>Arader Galleries, Oct. 10:</b> REDOUTE, Pierre-Joseph. Watercolor for plate 456: Bromella ananas (Cultivated Pineapple). $450,000 to $550,000.
    <b>Arader Galleries, Oct. 10:</b> COOK, Captain James. <i>A set of the three voyages comprising...</i> London: 1773-1785. $40,000 to $60,000.
    <b>Arader Galleries, Oct. 10:</b> KEY, Adrien Thomaszoon. Abraham Ortelius. Oil on Panel. $400,000 to $450,000.

Review Search

Archived Reviews

Ask Questions