Literary criticism & biography

Rare first editions, signed and inscribed copies, deluxe and collectible editions of books, pamphlets, and ephemera relating to critical writings about literature, including biographies and autobiographies of literary figures and printed collections of their correspondence.

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  1. Diamond Jim. The Life and Times of James Buchanan Brady.
    (BRADY, James Buchanan.) MORELL, Parker. Diamond Jim. The Life and Times of James Buchanan Brady.

    New York : 1934

    First edition, first impression. The biography of the larger-then-life figure James "Diamond Jim" Brady, American tycoon, philanthropist, and toast of the New York social scene during the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. A collector of jewellery and precious stones, he owned 30 sets of diamond jewellery-one for each day of the month. He... Learn More
    £575.00

    Stock Code: 74752

  2. Society Sensations.
    WYNDHAM, Horace. Society Sensations.

    London : 1938

    First edition, first impression, of this collection of tales, including "the liaison of a poet and a "literary" lady; the suspect "mediumship" of a feminine spiritualist; the exploits of a "gold-digger" who overreached herself; and the story of a girl who began in the chorus, and who, by courage and personality, finished up in the peerage." Learn More
    £225.00

    Stock Code: 74609

  3. Is She A Lady? A Problem in Autobiography.
    HAMNETT, Nina. Is She A Lady? A Problem in Autobiography.

    London : 1955

    First edition, first impression. The author's follow-up to her first book of memoirs, Laughing Torso. Hamnett (1890-1956) was an English artist and bohemian who lived in Paris and London, working as an art model and having affairs with writers and artists including Gaudier-Brzeska, Modigliani, Roger Fry, Pablo Picasso, and Jean Cocteau. Learn More
    £150.00

    Stock Code: 74018

  4. Preface [to Three Plays by Brieux].
    SHAW, George Bernard. Preface [to Three Plays by Brieux].

    [London : 1910]

    Page proofs, first state, hand-corrected by Shaw. The rare first state page proofs of Shaw's Preface to Three Plays by Brieux, which was published in 1911 by A. C. Fifield. Laurence located only 8 copies and notes "Shaw used copies of this proof state (and of the revised proof which followed) for purposes of translation and copyright deposit." It appears... Learn More
    £1,560.00

    Stock Code: 73705

  5. Edmund Campion.
    WAUGH, Evelyn. Edmund Campion.

    London : 1935

    First edition, first impression. A very tricky book to find in genuinely nice condition, this copy with an appropriately catholic association: a gift inscription from the Countess Idina Brassey to the Priory of Our Lady of Good Counsel, Haywards Heath, to the front free endpaper, and with the Priory's bookplate on the front pastedown. Learn More
    £1,750.00

    Stock Code: 72381

  6. The Life of Captain James Cook.
    (COOK, James.) KIPPIS, Andrew. The Life of Captain James Cook.

    London : 1788

    First edition of the "first English biography of Cook intended to give a well-balanced account of his life from birth to death, including his family and early years, and the capacities in which he was engaged prior to the famous voyages The Newfoundland and Labrador surveys are discussed, and the three voyages are dealt with in great narrative depth.... Learn More
    £1,750.00

    Stock Code: 70808

  7. Sybil Thorndike Casson.
    (THORNDIKE, Sybil.) SPRIGGE, Elizabeth. Sybil Thorndike Casson.

    London : 1971

    First edition, first impression, presentation copy to Laurence Oliver and Joan Plowright, inscribed by Thorndike on the front free endpaper, "To my darlings Larry & Joan with much love, Sybil", and below that by the author, "and warm thanks from Elizabeth Sprigge, October 1971". Learn More
    £975.00

    Stock Code: 68779

  8. The Cantos. Some Testimonies by Ernest Hemingway,
    (POUND, Ezra.) The Cantos. Some Testimonies by Ernest Hemingway,

    New York : 1933

    First edition, first impression. Learn More
    £650.00

    Stock Code: 66251

  9. The Cantos. Some Testimonies by Ernest Hemingway,
    (POUND, Ezra.) The Cantos. Some Testimonies by Ernest Hemingway,

    New York : 1933

    First edition, first impression. Learn More
    £850.00

    Stock Code: 66252

  10. My Musical Life and Recollections.
    RIVIÈRE, Jules. My Musical Life and Recollections.

    London : 1893

    First edition, presentation copy, inscribed by the author on the verso of the title page, "anno 1898-99, to Mrs. Baker with compliments and best wishes from the author Rivière. P. S. as a musical conductor I have been beating the time for the last fifty years, but alas! Now, in my 80th year time beats me unmercifully". Learn More
    £275.00

    Stock Code: 63632

  11. The Eye of the Story. Selected Essays and Reviews.
    WELTY, Eudora. The Eye of the Story. Selected Essays and Reviews.

    New York : 1977

    First edition, first printing. Inscribed by the author on the front free endpaper "To Nash and Marjorie - with longtime appreciation and highest respects & best wishes, from Eudora, June 1978". Nash Burger was a high school classmate of Welty's who became an editor at the New York Times Book Review. Learn More
    £1,000.00

    Stock Code: 63062

  12. Contemporary Portraits.
    HARRIS, Frank. Contemporary Portraits.

    New York : 1915

    First edition, first printing. Presentation copy from the author, inscribed on the front free endpaper, "To Margaret Viereck from the author, who admires her grace & beauty, more than any writing. Frank Harris. New York, 3 Washington Square. In this year of DisGrace 1915". A fine association: Margaret "Gretchen" Viereck was the wife of the German-American... Learn More
    £450.00

    Stock Code: 63174

  13. Conversations.
    SINGER, Isaac Bashevis. Conversations.

    Garden City, NY : 1985

    First edition, first printing. Inscribed by the author on the front free endpaper "To Robert with love, Isaac B Singer". Learn More
    £100.00

    Stock Code: 62867

  14. Edward Garnett.
    BATES, H. E. Edward Garnett.

    1950

    First edition, first impression. Learn More
    £75.00

    Stock Code: 62417

  15. The Mechanical Bride. Folklore of Industrial Man.
    MCLUHAN, Herbert Marshall. The Mechanical Bride. Folklore of Industrial Man.

    New York : 1951

    First edition, first impression. Inscribed by the author on the front free endpaper "For Mr. Fred Allan from Marshall McLuhan". Learn More
    £975.00

    Stock Code: 61401

  16. Janus. A Summing Up.
    KOESTLER, Arthur. Janus. A Summing Up.

    1978

    First edition, first impression. Presentation copy inscribed by the author on the front free endpaper, " To Tony, hopefully, from Arthur". Koestler had been diagnosed with Parkinson's disease in early 1976, the effects of which are evident here. Learn More
    £120.00

    Stock Code: 61022

  17. Abinger Harvest.
    FORSTER, E. M. Abinger Harvest.

    London : 1936

    First edition, second impression. Inscribed by the author on the half-title "For E. K. Brown from E. M. Forster, June 4th 1947". Brown's annotations appear throughout the text. Edward Killoran Brown (1905-51) was a prominant Canadian literature professor who taught at the University of Toronto, and later Cornell and the University of Chicago. He edited... Learn More
    £700.00

    Stock Code: 60250

  18. Goldsworthy Lower Dickinson.
    FORSTER, E. M. Goldsworthy Lower Dickinson.

    London : 1934

    First edition, first impression. Learn More
    £260.00

    Stock Code: 60122

  19. A Bibliography of Sir James George Frazer.
    (FRAZER, James George) BESTERMAN, Theodore (ed.) A Bibliography of Sir James George Frazer.

    1934

    First edition, first impression. Inscribed by Frazer, anthropologist and author of The Golden Bough, on the half-title "A notre ami Francois Ceccaldi, en affectueuse reconnaissance de J. G. & L. Frazer". Also included is a plate from a different book illustrating the entrace to Trinity College, Cambridge (where Frazer was a fellow) taped to the front... Learn More
    £225.00

    Stock Code: 59659

  20. Creating the Modern American Novel.
    HATCHER, Harlan. Creating the Modern American Novel.

    1936

    First edition, first impression. Learn More
    £45.00

    Stock Code: 59457

  21. A Bibliography of the Poems of Oscar Wilde.
    (WILDE, Oscar.) MASON, Stuart. A Bibliography of the Poems of Oscar Wilde.

    London : 1907

    First edition, signed limited issue, number 7 of 25 copies signed by the bibliographer, printed on larger hand-made paper, and with the illustrations on Japanese vellum. A further 450 unsigned trade copies were also issued. Learn More
    £500.00

    Stock Code: 59355

  22. A Whole New Life.
    PRICE, Reynolds. A Whole New Life.

    New York : 1994

    First edition, first printing. Learn More
    £20.00

    Stock Code: 59411

  23. Worthy women of our first century.
    WISTER, Mrs O. J. [Sarah Butler], & Miss Agnes Irwin (eds.) Worthy women of our first century.

    Philadelphia : 1877

    First edition. This copy with the bookplate of Butler Place to the front pastedown, and the publishers' presentation inscription; "Mrs. Owen J. Wister with respects of the Publishers" to the first blank. As well as co-editing, Mrs Wister contributes a piece on Deborah Logan. Sarah Butler Wister was the eldest daughter of Fanny Kemble and Pierce Butler,... Learn More
    £650.00

    Stock Code: 52144

  24. In Pursuit of Publishing.
    HILL, Alan. In Pursuit of Publishing.

    1988

    First edition, first impression. Signed by the author on the title page. Learn More
    £20.00

    Stock Code: 51594

  25. Best Minds. A Tribute to Allen Ginsberg.
    GINSBERG, Allen. Best Minds. A Tribute to Allen Ginsberg.

    New York : 1986

    First edition, first impression. One of 500 specially-bound contributor's copies out of a limited edition of 726 copies. From the library of Alan Ansen. Learn More
    £120.00

    Stock Code: 51415

  26. Religious Drama: Mediaeval and Modern.
    ELIOT, T. S. Religious Drama: Mediaeval and Modern.

    New York : 1954

    First edition, first impression, one of a limited edition of 300 numbered copies signed by the author on the limitation leaf. This work presents the text of an address Eliot gave to the Friends of Rochester Cathedral in 1937. The work was never published in the UK. Learn More
    £600.00

    Stock Code: 50750

  27. Presents.
    GORDON, Max; with Lewis Funke. Presents.

    New York : 1963

    First edition, first printing, of the autobiography of the successful theatre and film producer. Inscribed by the author on two stickers: one to the verso of the half-title, "To Maurice Chevalier who understands the business of acting and the show business. There are few like you. Best always, Max Gordon"; and to the contents page, "To Maurice Chevalier... Learn More
    £125.00

    Stock Code: 49985

  28. My Friend Henry Miller. An Intimate Biography.
    MILLER, Henry - PERLÈS, Alfred. My Friend Henry Miller. An Intimate Biography.

    London : 1955

    First edition, first impression. Signed by both the author and Miller on a stuck in label on the front free endpaper and further inscribed by Miller "For Harry Lloyd Marshall, Jr." Learn More
    £320.00

    Stock Code: 48899

  29. A Victorian in the Modern World.
    HAPGOOD, Hutchins. A Victorian in the Modern World.

    New York : 1939

    First edition, first printing. Learn More
    £175.00

    Stock Code: 47039

  30. George Gissing: A Critical Biography.
    KORG, Jacob. George Gissing: A Critical Biography.

    London : 1965

    First UK edition. Initially published by the University of Washington Press two years previously. From the library of John Heygate, whose initials and the date "1965" are inscribed at head of the title page. Learn More
    £35.00

    Stock Code: 47655

  31. The Ecstasies of Thomas de Quincey.
    BURKE, Thomas (ed.) The Ecstasies of Thomas de Quincey.

    London : 1928

    First edition, first impression. Learn More
    £100.00

    Stock Code: 46435

  32. Aurora Leigh. Offprint from
    WOOLF, Virginia. Aurora Leigh. Offprint from

    1931

    First printing of this appreciation of Elizabeth Barret Browning's Aurora Leigh (1856). Woolf's essay was reprinted and slightly revised in TLS on 2 July 1931; The Common Reader: Second Series, 1932; and in the Collected Essays, Vol. I, 1966. In this essay Woolf analyses Browning's work and writing form, and wonders why it has "left no successors",... Learn More
    £400.00

    Stock Code: 46203

  33. Memories of a Working Women's Guild. Offprint from.
    WOOLF, Virginia. Memories of a Working Women's Guild. Offprint from.

    1930

    First printing of this essay, reprinted (revised) as the introduction to Life as We Have Known It, Margaret Llewelyn Davies (ed), Hogarth Press 1931; collected in The Captain's Death Bed, 1950; Selections from Her Essays, 1966; Collected Essays, Vol. 4, 1967. Woolf had an active interest in the Labour Party and Co-operative Movement and regularly held... Learn More
    £500.00

    Stock Code: 46212

  34. Ceaseless Turmoil.
    LEES-MILNE, James. Ceaseless Turmoil.

    2004

    First edition, first impression. The eleventh volume of the diaries. Learn More
    £60.00

    Stock Code: 44085

  35. Time Exposure.
    JACKSON, William Henry. Time Exposure.

    New York : 1940

    First Edition, First Printing. Learn More
    £220.00

    Stock Code: 42723

  36. Classics and Commercials. A Literary Chronicle of the Forties.
    WILSON, Edmund. Classics and Commercials. A Literary Chronicle of the Forties.

    New York : 1950

    First Edition, First Printing. With the author's signed presentation inscription to the front free endpaper, "To Dorothy Mendenhall with love from Edmund Christmas 1950". With a correction to the text in Wilson's hand. Review slip laid in. Dorothy Mendenhall was Wilson's cousin, a respected researcher, obstetrician, and pioneer in methods of childbirth.... Learn More
    £300.00

    Stock Code: 42861

  37. A Tree is a Tree.
    VIDOR, King. A Tree is a Tree.

    New York : 1953

    First Edition, First Printing. Signed by Vidor on the front free endpaper. Learn More
    £675.00

    Stock Code: 41284

  38. Catalogue of The Winnie-the-Pooh Collection of Pat McInally.
    MILNE, A. A., & E. H. Shepard. Catalogue of The Winnie-the-Pooh Collection of Pat McInally.

    London : 2011

    Catalogue to accompany the exhibition and sale of the most comprehensive collection of Winnie-the-Pooh books and artwork ever assembled. Including more than one hundred items gathered together over twenty years by American football legend Pat McInally, the catalogue describes and illustrates fine examples of all the Pooh books, important inscribed copies,... Learn More
    £10.00

    Stock Code: 39598

  39. Shakespeare's Boy Actors.
    DAVIES, W. Robertson. Shakespeare's Boy Actors.

    1939

    First Edition, First Impression of the author's first book. Still a standard in the field. In a letter to a collector written in 1951 Davies reported having no spare copies of this book and that his best guess was that no more than 600 were in existence. Scarce in dust jacket. Learn More
    £1,875.00

    Stock Code: 38548

  40. Last Essays.
    HEWLETT, Maurice. Last Essays.

    London : 1924

    First edition, first impression. Learn More
    £35.00

    Stock Code: 36634

  41. Memoir of Charles Mathews, comedian.
    MATHEWS, Charles. Memoir of Charles Mathews, comedian.

    London : 1838-9

    First edition, in an extraordinary binding no doubt intended to invoke the traditional motley of the jester. The most famous comedian of his day, Mathews's powerful influence on Charles Dickens's stylistic methods of comic characterization has long been recognized. Mathews's monopolylogues, farces in which the actor played every character, provided... Learn More
    £1,000.00

    Stock Code: 35334

  42. Now and Then.
    HELLER, Joseph. Now and Then.

    New York : 1998

    First edition, first impression. With the author's magnificent presentation inscription to the half title page, "For Erica - - Who has played a much larger role in this slice of a life than has been given her here. The family photo in the book is lovely. I hope the book pleases you too. With much love Dad". Learn More
    £2,750.00

    Stock Code: 35884

  43. Predilections.
    MOORE, Marianne. Predilections.

    1956

    First Edition, First Impression. Learn More
    £100.00

    Stock Code: 34667

  44. Colin Wilson.
    WILSON, Colin - CAMPION, Sidney R. Colin Wilson.

    London : 1962

    First edition, first impression. With the author's signed presentation inscription to the front free endpaper to Sheila Hancock. Learn More
    £50.00

    Stock Code: 34823

  45. The Fortunes of Harriette.
    THIRKELL, Angela. The Fortunes of Harriette.

    1936

    First Edition, First Impression. Scarce. Learn More
    £200.00

    Stock Code: 33706

  46. The Milk of Paradise.
    LEES-MILNE, James. The Milk of Paradise.

    2005

    First Edition, First Impression. The final volume of the diaries. Learn More
    £100.00

    Stock Code: 33708

  47. Holy Dread.
    LEES-MILNE, James. Holy Dread.

    2001

    First Edition, First Impression. Learn More
    £90.00

    Stock Code: 33709

  48. A Mingled Measure.
    LEES-MILNE, James. A Mingled Measure.

    1994

    First edition, first impression. Learn More
    £90.00

    Stock Code: 33710

  49. Place in Fiction.
    WELTY, Eudora. Place in Fiction.

    1956

    First Edition, Offprinted. One of about 50 copies. With the author's signed presentation inscription, "For Bobbie Gafford who sat through it in Birmingham Eudora Welty". The recipient was Charlotte Gafford the Professor of Writing Studies at the University of Alabama at Birmingham. Her nickname "Bobbie" seems universally to have been used. Place in... Learn More
    £1,000.00

    Stock Code: 32546

  50. Jugged Journalism.
    BERKELEY, Anthony, as A. B. Cox. Jugged Journalism.

    London : 1925

    First edition, first impression. Anthony Berkeley Cox wrote numerous and particularly highly regarded works of detective fiction under two pen names: as Anthony Berkeley, he took the British Golden Age detective novel to fresh heights, while as Francis Iles, he was a pioneer of psychological suspense fiction with a seasoning of cynical wit. The pieces... Learn More
    £500.00

    Stock Code: 31316

  51. Beyond the Outsider.
    WILSON, Colin. Beyond the Outsider.

    1965

    First edition, first impression, inscribed by the author on the front free endpaper to Sheila Hancox, in the year of publication. Learn More
    £125.00

    Stock Code: 31339

  52. The Life of Samuel Johnson
    BOSWELL, James. The Life of Samuel Johnson

    London : 1831

    First edition edited by John Wilson Croker and "the best edition until superseded by the work of George Birkbeck Hill 1887" (ODNB). This set has the additional volume of Johnsoniana (1836). Learn More
    £675.00

    Stock Code: 24392

  53. The Life of Samuel Johnson.
    BOSWELL, James. The Life of Samuel Johnson.

    London : 1901

    First Railton edition, one of the most attractive illustrated editions of Boswell's great book; this set extra illustrated and handsomely bound by Riviere and Son, with the additional volume of Johnsoniana, or Supplement to Boswell (1836). Learn More
    £1,950.00

    Stock Code: 12631

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