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SOLD - Haiku - R. H. Blyth

1970 to 1971 - The Hokuseido Press, Tokyo - 20th, 13th, 14th, & 12th editions
‘Mountains and rivers, the whole earth, –
All manifest forth the essence of being’

A lovely set of this four volume work on the origins and spirit of Japanese
haiku, complete and fine in beautifully illustrated dust jackets. Tipped in the last page of each volume is the publisher’s sheet with date of printing, Blyth’s hanko (ink stamp), bookseller’s plate and other details, which are normally missing.

Blyth is best known as a major interpreter of haiku to English speakers. These four volumes, first published from 1949 to 1952, helped introduce haiku to the post World War II world, and his translations and writings on the subject were a crucial impetus in triggering the creation of haiku outside of Japan. Many contemporary Western writers of haiku were introduced to the genre through his works. These include the San Francisco and Beat Generation writers, such as Jack Kerouac, Gary Snyder, and Allen Ginsberg, as well as J.D. Salinger.

Each volume with numerous full page black and white and colour illustrations. Volume 4 with a fold-out graph depicting the evolution of English and Japanese literature, at rear. Many
haiku in Blyth’s translation are presented alongside their original Japanese characters. 
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Price HK$ 0



The Life of Samuel Johnson, LL.D. - James Boswell

1900 - Macmillan and Co., London
‘To write the Life of him who excelled all mankind in writing the lives of others, and who, whether we consider his extraordinary endowments, or his various works, has been equalled by few in any age, is an arduous, and may be reckoned in me a presumptuous task.’ - James Boswell.

A three-volume set, finely bound by Riviére. James Boswell’s epic biography of the extraordinary life and times of Samuel Johnson, was an immediate best seller when it was first published in 1791, and later acknowledged as ‘the most famous single work of biographical art in the whole of literature’.

‘Curiosity is one of the permanent and certain characteristics of a vigourous mind’ - Samuel Johnson. 
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Price HK$ 4,500



Let It Come Down - Paul Bowles

1952 - Random House, New York - First American Edition, First Printing
In Let It Come Down, Paul Bowles plots the doomed trajectory of Nelson Dyar, a New York bank teller who comes to Tangier ‘outpost of unrestrained freedom, morass of ruthless greed and opportunism’, in search of a different life and ends up giving in to his darkest impulses. Rich in descriptions of the corruption and decadence of the International Zone in the last days before Moroccan independence, Bowles's second novel is an alternately comic and horrific account of a descent into nihilism. [Preface]

In a bright example of the dust jacket designed by E. McKnight Kauffer, and with rather pretty letterpress Random House card from Paul Bowles editor, printed ‘
Compliments of David McDowell’, laid in. 
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Price HK$ 2,000



A Good Man in Africa - William Boyd

1981 - Hamish Hamilton, London - First Edition
‘This is a wildly funny novel, rich in witty prose and raucous incidents . . . without qualification, a delight’ – The Washington Post

A bright and near fine first edition of Boyd’s debut novel, the satirical story of British Diplomat Morgan Leafy, an unfortunate prisoner of the flesh, whose indulgence in women, fondness for drink, as well as his loathing for the small African republic of Kinjanja where he is stationed, prove to be imposing obstacles on his road to success. But his life becomes problematic when his plans to rig the country’s elections go awry, and he finds himself being blackmailed by a local politician...

Winner of the Whitbread First Novel Award and the Somerset Maugham Award for 1981.
 
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Price HK$ 5,800



The Hawkline Monster, A Gothic Western - with - Willard and His Bowling Trophies, A Perverse Mystery - Richard Brautigan

1974 1975 - Simon and Schuster, New York - First Editions
Two of Brautigan’s Gothic thrillers, containing, as always, an amazing tapestry of characters, bursts of poetic brilliance, and the sadness that at the age of 49 Brautigan silenced by self-inflicted gunshot-wound.

All of us have a place in history. Mine is in clouds

‘There is a real plot and a thread of continuity that runs through chunky, one-page chapters containing passages that run the gamut of style from Edgar Allan Poe to Zane Grey, from Ian Fleming to George V. This is certainly Brautigan’s most simultaneously unified and eclectic work.’ -
Playboy on The Hawkline Monster. 
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Price HK$ 1,800



So the Wind Won’t Blow It All Away - Richard Brautigan

1982 - Delacorte Press / Seymour Lawrence, New York - First Edition
Loosely based on Brautigan’s childhood of poverty and abuse. This beautiful work was Brautigan’s last book before 1984 when, at the age of 49, he died of a self-inflicted gunshot-wound.

‘All of us have a place in history. Mine is in clouds’
 
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Price HK$ 1,300



Richard Brautigan's Trout Fishing in America, The Pill Versus the Springhill Mine Disaster, and In Watermelon Sugar - Richard Brautigan

1969 - A Seymore Lawrence Book. Delacorte Press, New York - First Edition Thus
A collection of Brautigan’s first three works to be published, and there is no better place to start than ‘Trout Fishing in America’ which sent him into confused stardom, apparently representing the counter-culture of the time, whilst being contemptuous of hippies. Ferlinghetti said ‘He was much more in tune with the trout in America than the people’.

TFiA is followed by his ‘Poetry’ with
The Pill Versus the Springhill Mine Disaster, a collection of ninety-eight poems, and finishing off with In Watermelon Sugar, a parable for survival in the 20th century, the story of a successful commune called iDEATH whose inhabitants survive in passive unity while a group of rebels live violently and end up dying in a mass suicide.

Despite our efforts above, it is not possible to really describe these three works. They are Brautigan, go with the flow... and the trout.

All of us have a place in history. Mine is in clouds

In 1984 at the age of 49 Brautigan died of a self-inflicted gunshot-wound.
 
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Price HK$ 1,500



1873 - Basil Montagu Pickering, London - First Edition
The first collection of poems by Robert Seymour Bridges (1844-1930), poet, prosodist, anthologist, and typographer, who was considered among the most influential literary figures of the early twentieth century.

Scarce, according to McKay’s
Bibliography, (1933) Bridges said that ’most of this edition was, in fact, destroyed, and very few copies are believed to exist’.

It ‘contains perhaps his greatest short poem, the “
Elegy on a Lady Whom Grief for the Death of Her Betrothed Killed,” a poem comparable only to Dryden’s “Ode to the Memory of Mrs. Ann Killigrew.”... In grace and technical perfection there is nothing to exceed a few poems in the 1873 volume. Bridges ranks with Chaucer, Herrick, and Milton as a metrist, and this command over the formal aspect of poetry was complete from the first.’ - Albert Guerard, Jr. 
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Price HK$ 900



 
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