Christmas Holiday - William Somerset Maugham

1939 - William Heinemann Ltd, London - First Edition
First edition of one of Maugham’s darker tales, Paris, the Russian Revolution, a lost generation and self-destruction.

The basis for the 1944 film noir, a highlight for director Robert Siodmak, starring Deanna Durbin and Gene Kelly.
 
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Price HK$ 1,600



Decline and Fall - An Illustrated Novelette - Evelyn Waugh

1928 - Chapman &, London - First Edition, First Issue
‘Anarchic and experimental... Surely one of the wittiest and most original of first novels. Champagne to the particular.’ - Cyril Connolly, The Modern Movement.

First edition, first issue, of Evelyn Waugh’s first novel. Illustrated with six full-page line drawings by Waugh.

After the book was rejected for indecency by the publisher of his earlier biography of Rossetti, Waugh offered the manuscript to Chapman & Hall, but he did so while his father, who was the managing director of the firm, was away on holiday. The acting-director agreed to publish the novel. Arthur Waugh returned to London to discover that his son was his firm's newest author. When Arthur Waugh's biography was published three years later, however,
Decline and Fall and Vile Bodies, the two novels published under his directorship of Chapman & Hall, were not mentioned. The indelicate material, which Martin Stannard has since revealed in fact did go through some "taming" revisions, was perhaps a bit too much for the elder Waugh. 
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Price HK$ 9,500



The Sword of Honour Trilogy - Evelyn Waugh

1952 - Chapman &, London - First Editions
An exceptionally bright set of Waugh’s Second World War trilogy.

‘This war has begun in darkness and it will end in silence ‘– Men at Arms.

‘There was a regulation that if they remained at large in enemy territory for some weeks longer, they could be repatriated to the United States. It was for this that they had made a hazardous parachute jump and destroyed an expensive, very slightly damaged aeroplane.’ – Unconditional Surrender.

‘Beautifully structured and deeply melancholy account of England and the Second World War, which also contains moments and scenes of pure hilarity. Written in a spirit of great tenderness and tolerance and a sort of humility.’ – Callil and Toibin.

‘The finest work of fiction in English to emerge from World War II’ –
The Atlantic (2001)

'Marvellous ... one of the masterpieces of the century' – John Banville,
Irish Times. 
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Price HK$ 12,000