The Orchard Keeper
New York: Random House, (1965). First Edition. Hardcover. First printing, octavo size, 251 pp., signed by Cormac McCarthy. Near fine / near fine. Item #CNJZ0035
Cormac McCarthy (born Charles Joseph McCarthy, Jr., in 1933), is aknowledged by many as one of the greatest contemporary American writers. His first novel, "The Orchard Keeper", won a 1966 William Faulkner Foundation Award for notable first novel; "All the Pretty Horses" would win the National Book Award in 1992, and "No Country for Old Men", conceived as a screen play (and later turned into a novel) won four Academy Awards. He has (to date) authored twelve novels, three short stories, five screenplays and two plays.
This work, "The Orchard Keeper" was McCarthy's first novel; it would receive the 1966 William Faulkner Foundation Award for notable first novel. Initial reviews, although somewhat mixed, praised McCarthy's "flashing visual impact" and his "unusual writing furrowed by a stark, visual imagery while the story itself has a shadowed fascination" (n.b., quotes from Orville Prescott and "Kirkus Reviews").
This the first edition, first printing, signed simply "Cormac McCarthy" in blue ink on the half-title page.
___DESCRIPTION: Green cloth shelfback over red paper-covered boards, gilt lettering and red decorations stamped onto the spine, front board with blind-debossed decoration and the author's initials stamped in gilt, top edge stained green, First Printing stated on copyright page, McCarthy's signature on the half-title page; octavo size (8.25" by 5 5/8"), pagination: [i-iv] [1-7] 8-246 [1, author bio]. Dust jacket of white with black and red lettering, front flap with short summary of the book and the publisher's statement that they were "[c]onfident of the acclaim 'The Orchard Keeper' will ultimately receive...", back flap with author bio and a black-and-white photograph of (a very young) McCarthy, review blurbs on the back panel.
___CONDITION: Overall near fine; the binding clean and without wear, the gilt and red on the binding deep and unrubbed, a strong, square text block with solid hinges, the interior clean and bright, the sole prior owner marking we see being a red label affixed to the front free endpaper from the Ziegler-Ross Agency with their address and phone (we presume they sent out a number of copies to customers); a few areas of white to the green top-stain, the corners very gently bumped and with minor rubbing. The dust jacket has been price-clipped, else near fine; not sunned (the red on the spine as deep as on the panels), clean, with the lightest of edgewear albeit with some light, extremely shallow scattered creases and a very light, narrow band of toning along the bottom of the jacket (about a half-inch up from the bottom edge). Even with its few faults, still an outstanding example of McCarthy's first novel, signed.
___PROVENANCE: We acquired this book from a collector who purchased it from an ABAA member who confirmed the signature, details available upon request.
___POSTAGE: International customers, please note that additional postage may apply as the standard does not always cover costs; please inquire for details.
___Swan's Fine Books is pleased to be a member of the ABAA, ILAB, and IOBA and we stand behind every book we sell. Please contact us with any questions you may have, we are here to help.