Octavo, bound in original slate gray cloth with gilt titles, 294 pp., including index. Top edge stained yellow. Stated first edition in the RARE ORIGINAL DUST WRAPPER. Offsetting from old moisture damage, evidenced by a white residue mark running the width of the rear cover, approximately one inch from the top edge. The damage mirrors a stain on the wrapper's rear panel and spine. The stain, while noticeable, is less detracting than one might expect, not affecting the spine of the book itself, that is otherwise fine and bright. There is other minor soiling and wear to the dust wrapper, but it is unfaded and complete, lettered in navy blue against a pale turquoise ground. '"Price $4.00" is printed on the inner flap along with a list of Harper publications on psychology and psychoanalysis. The back flap and rear panel also serve as advertisements for current Harper publications. The front cover of the dust wrapper, however, is fully dedicated to the promotion of Houdini, "...He dissects with an especially keen scalpel, he does not wield it as one determined to destroy, but rather a seeker after truth... Although he has the utmost respect for the honest belief of any person, he is the relentless enemy of deliberate fraud, and the account of his adventures in the investigation and detection of it forms a valuable chapter in the crusade for the truth." Thus, the wrapper is indeed a marvelous historical document in its own right. Not just a mere ornamental cover for a book, it stands as a publisher's clever harnessing of the public's endless fascination with the magician and man who was the Great Houdini.
(Inventory #: 2604)
Literature, Art & Philosophy of the Arts & Crafts Movement in America & Britain. Strong Emphasis on the Cotswold District & the Glasgow School: Ruskin, Morris, Mackintosh, Stickley, Hubbard, et al. Appraisals and Collection Services in all areas.
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