First edition, first printing. Inscribed by the author “To John & Carol Steinbeck in sorrow for their un-social thought and behavior, ‘The Cats’, Los Gatos California, November 11 1938”. He has also autographed the frontispiece. Wood (1852–1944) was a writer, lawyer, and prominant supporter of radical causes, and Earthly Discourse is a collection of satirical stories in this vein. Wood was friendly with many activists and writers, including John Steinbeck, whose Of Mice and Men was published the year before this book was inscribed. “The Cats” was the name of Wood’s house: the name of the town means “the cats” in Spanish.
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Octavo. Original light brown cloth, titles to spine and upper board in blue, blue top-stain. With the dust jacket. Portrait frontispiece. Bindings lightly rubbe and marked, spine a little tanned, endpapers tanned, contents toned. A very good copy in the rubbed jacket with faded spine panel and two short closed tears.