San Francisco: The Book Club of California [printed by Taylor & Taylor], 1918. Lundborg, Florence. Limited Edition. Hardcover. No. 65 of 300 copies, quarto size, 38 pp. Near fine. Item #20041701
Clark Ashton Smith (1893-1961) was a then little-known poet; he would go on to become famous for his fantasy, horror and science fiction short stories. His rise to fame started with the enthusiasm of George Sterling (1869-1926), himself considered one of the greatest of American poets by those in the west. The Book Club of California, itself "young and struggling" perhaps identified with Smith, and Sterling thought highly of Smith's poems, considering them of an "astonishing maturity" from an author who had written them before reaching the age of twenty (n.b., quotes from the BCC bibliography).
The eighth book printed by the newly-established (in 1916) Book Club of California, and printed by the well-known San Francisco printing company of Taylor & Taylor. A lovely work, with wide art deco-style pictorial borders of peacocks with twining borders of grapes with grapeleaves and flowers, designed by Florence Lundborg, on every page.
___DESCRIPTION: Blue laid paper boards with natural linen shelfback, cream paper spine label with black lettering, decorative title page with lettering in red and black, decorations in green, each page with a wide pictorial border by Florence Lundborg, Preface by George Sterling dated April 17, 1918, written at the Bohemian Club, the title of the first poem, "Nero" in red with a four-line initial capital letter, all signatures unopened; handset Kennerly type, handmade paper, quarto size (10.25" by 7.75"), pagination: [i-ii] iii-iv (Preface) v (Contents) [vi-viii], 1-28, [blank], [colophon], limited edition of 300 copies, this no. 65.
___CONDITION: Near fine, the boards clean (other than a few very light stray marks), the corners straight and unrubbed, a strong, square text block with solid hinges, the interior is clean and bright, and entirely free of prior owner markings; some rubbing to the spine label, one small spot of soil to the linen shelfback, and a hint of a bow to the thin front board. Overall a lovely, unopened copy of an early BCC publication, beautifully decorated on every page.
___CITATION: BCC 100, no. 8; Sidney-Fryer, p. 128.
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