Peter Pan in Kensington Gardens - J. M. Barrie, Arthur Rackham (illustrator) 1912 - Hodder & Stoughton, London - First Thus : Best edition with Rackham’s Illustrations interspersed amongst the text. In Peter Pan In Kensington Gardens, Peter, not wanting to grow up, spent his time amongst the enchanted birds, trees, animals, and magical folk of the park, he also meets and falls in love with a little girl named Maimie Mannering. Peter and Maimie were developed by Barrie into the slightly older Peter Pan and Wendy, for the play Peter Pan, or the Boy Who Would Not Grow Up.

Finely bound by Bayntun-Rivière, and with 50 delightful illustrations by Rackham who 'seems to have dropped out of some cloud in Mr. Barrie’s fairyland, sent by a special providence to make pictures in tune to his genius' -
Pall Mall Gazette.

‘The still air is filled with the ringing of hundreds of little fairy bells,
but the sweetest sound of all,
is the fluting of Peter Pan’s pipes as he calls to the spring to make haste,
because with the spring comes Wendy.'
  Following the great success of his stage play. Barrie asked Rackham to provide the illustrations after seeing the exhibition of his work for Rip Van Winkle. The lavish Christmas gift book established Rackham as the leading illustrator of his day. The first edition had all the images placed at the rear of the book, in this, the best edition, they were placed in line with the relevant text.

Arthur Rackham (1867-1939), English illustrator and water-colourist. One of the foremost and most productive of the Edwardian illustrators, with a preference for illustrating books of a mystical, magic or legendary background. Aided by advances in colour printing at the beginning of the 20th century, his imaginative eye saw all forms with the eyes of childhood and created a world that was half reassuring and half frightening, whilst adding a delightfully humorous flourish to many of his illustrations, although he can descend into darker depths as seen for Wagner and Edgar Allen Poe.

References: House,
Dictionary of British Book Illustrators and Caricaturists 424. Bleiler, Checklist of Fantastic Literature 126. Book Collector No.271, 'The Great Illustrators'.

Quarto (binding size 27.5x12.8cm), pp. [4] ix [1] x 123 [3].
  Finely bound by the Bayntun-Rivière bindery in full green morocco, with gilt vignette of Peter Pan on his goat to the front cover, both covers with single gilt filet border, spine lettered and dated in gilt with one line panels, centres tools and tooled bands, gilt decorated edges and turn-ins, hand marbled endpapers, all edges gilt.   Condition: Slight speckling to gilt edges else fine, internally fine.   Ref: 109887   Price: HK$ 18,000