TWELVE STORIES AND A DREAM. London: Macmillan and Co., Limited / New York: The Macmillan Company, 1903. Octavo, pp. [1-8] [1-2] 3-377 [378: blank] [379-384: ads] + 16-page publisher's catalogue dated "20.9.03" at base of page  inserted at rear, original decorated green cloth, front panel stamped in gold and blind, spine panel stamped in gold, t.e.g. First edition. Presentation copy with signed inscription by Wells on recto of half title leaf to fellow author Joseph Conrad: "To Joseph Conrad / this mixture / from H. G. Wells." Conrad and Wells, contemporaries and successful authors of fiction whose layered depths have helped it to endure, were friends and, for a time, neighbors on the coast of Kent. The Polish immigrant was particularly grateful for the favorable notice he had received from Wells of his early work, and he dedicated THE SECRET AGENT to Wells. But they had very different backgrounds, temperaments and philosophies. “From early on in the relationship the two men were really working to convert each other -- Conrad to make Wells into a more traditional and less political writer, Wells to make Conrad a Fabian, a socialist, or at least a republican who could use his knowledge of the depths of men to illuminate possible future worlds.” - Smith, H. G. Wells: Desperately Mortal, p. 163. The two corresponded, but most of Wells' letters have disappeared, making inscribed material such as this all the more valuable. See Smith, pp. 161-7, especially 164 (presenting this book) and 167 (analysis of their relationship). A collection of thirteen science fiction and fantasy stories including "Filmer," one of Wells's finest stories, "The Valley of the Spiders," "The Inexperienced Ghost," "The New Accelerator," The Stolen Body," and "A Dream of Armageddon." Bleiler, The Guide to Supernatural Fiction 1680. Bleiler, Science-Fiction: The Early Years 2336. Clarke, Tale of the Future (1978), p. 29. Locke, A Spectrum of Fantasy, p. 227. Survey of Science Fiction Literature IV, pp. 1967-72. Tymn (ed), Horror Literature 3-248. Bleiler (1978), p. 205. Reginald 15097. Currey, p. 526. Hammond C5. Wells 23. Wells Society 23. Cloth rubbed at spine ends, corner tips and along outer joints, light scattered foxing to front endpapers, a very good, externally bright and attractive copy. Housed in cloth folder and quarter maroon morocco slipcase (spine panel a bit rubbed and nicked). A superb association copy. (#80372).
No statement of printing.