THE CASE OF MR. LUCRAFT AND OTHER TALES ... Library Edition. New York: Dodd, Mead & Company Publishers, n.d. . Octavo, pp. [i-v] vi [vii-viii] [9-11] 12-367 [368: blank], original decorated blue cloth, spine panel stamped in gold and brown, front and rear panels stamped in brown, t.e.g. First U.S. hardcover edition? Published as volume two of a twelve volume "Library Edition" of Besant's works. This copy is a later issue or printing of the Dodd, Mead edition with "John W. Lovell / Company" stamped at base of spine panel. The title story and other tales were published earlier in the U.S. as a paperbound book issued by Munro in 1882 as part of their "Seaside Library" series, but the Dodd, Mead edition appears to be the first U.S. hardcover edition. The Dodd, Mead edition includes the contents of the UK edition published in 1876 by Sampson Low, Marston, Searle & Rivington, as well as a short novel, "When the Ship Comes Home" [Wolff 414 is in error; the 1876 Samson Low edition does not include this latter story]. "The Case of Mr. Lucraft" employs a deal with the devil theme as in Hoffmann's "The Sandman" and Chamisso's "Peter Schlemihl;" in this case a man sells his appetite. Tone light and amusing, carries onto ghost stories. "In the highly original and very striking title story, a young man leases his healthy appetite to an old sybarite, taking upon himself the unpleasant side effects of the other's overindulgence. The collection also includes four light ghost stories and the novella 'Titania's Farewell,' a didactic tale in which the fairies leave England in protest against modern social trends." - Barron (ed), Fantasy Literature 2-17. Ashley, Who's Who in Horror and Fantasy Fiction, pp. 33-4. Bleiler, The Guide to Supernatural Fiction 156. Clute and Grant (eds), The Encyclopedia of Fantasy, p. 109. Schlobin, The Literature of Fantasy 101. Bleiler (1978), p. 22. Reginald 01214. Text block printed on wood pulp paper and thus somewhat age-darkened, cloth worn at spine ends, flecking to cloth on front and rear panels, otherwise a solid, very good copy. (#148080).
No statement of printing.