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The African Queen.
  • 86970
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The African Queen.

Published: London: Michael Joseph, 1950

Stock code: 86970

Price: £3,500

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Presentation copy inscribed by the author to the literary agent responsible for the film adaptation on the front free endpaper, “To Shirley, – a copy of a book which is as old as our friendship but not nearly as precious to me. With love from C. S. Forester”. Shirley Palmer Collier was a well-known Los Angeles literary agent who began her career as a silent film actress, starring in at least twenty-three films between 1923 and 1934. She married the author and Hollywood screenwriter John Collier in 1936 and maintained strong links to the movie industry throughout her career. It was in all likelihood Shirley Collier who introduced The African Queen to Horizon Pictures as a potential film, and Collier’s then ex-husband served as one of the screenwriters. The novel was originally published in 1935 and the completed film, starring Humphrey Bogart and Katharine Hepburn, premiered in 1951, the year after this edition was published. Forester must have obtained this copy to present to Collier as thanks for her role in the film’s birth. A superb association.

Octavo. Original orange cloth, titles to spine and upper board in blue. With the dust jacket. Spine just a little rolled, faint partial toning to free endpapers. An excellent copy in the rubbed and nicked jacket with fraying at the ends of the spine panel.

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