This interesting little book requires some thought. John Williams has surged forth as one of the respected giants of mid-century American prose. His masterpiece, Stoner, has garnered such acclaim in recent years, that print runs seem to be selling out all over America and Europe. His other novels, Butcher’s Crossing, a stark portrayal of the final years of the buffalo hunt in Colorado, and Augustus, about the Roman Emperor, are as different as they are wonderful reads. But what does one think about the early and largely unknown poetic work? The wider study and discussion of this effort is yet to be done, but as an early illustration of this artist’s creative trajectory, has much interest. In terms of the collectible realm, this is an uncommon item, in rather quite excellent condition. The boards and text are bright and clean, judiciously protected by its very good dust jacket, which holds some light rubbing/scuffing. The spine is lightly toned, with minor rubbing, and all housed in a custom-cut mylar cover. What makes this an even more exceptional item, is the John Williams inscription:
An interesting item, with cool paper-covered boards! Known more for his Road to Oxiana, which I highly recommend to travel fans, or those interested in early perceptions of the Middle East, this book is an account of Byron’s travels to a Greek monastery. Black and white photos included. Some equal though not devastating sunning to boards and spine, this is still a handsome copy.
Happy to have Wittgenstein’s Mistress come through our stock recently. I have always loved the early Dalkey Archive Press jackets, the ones vaguely resembling zines and Xerox. That is not to say it’s all “punk” or DIY, but with these jackets Dalkey brought some of that aesthetic, though refined, to their platform of heady, “experimental” literature. This title is of course one the most important from their list. David Foster Wallace famously wrote: “…that a novel this abstract and erudite and avant-garde that could also be so moving makes “Wittgenstein’s Mistress” pretty much the high point of experimental fiction in this country. [courtesy Salon article ]
One of our recent additions to the inventory:
First American printing of the great German author’s last published book. Austerlitz recounts the discovery of Jacques Austerlitz’s lost world and identity. Written in the mesmerizing prose that became Sebald’s stamp on contemporary literature, along with perhaps his more influential use of photography, this work so far stands the test of time. This is a beautiful, signed copy!