copyright 1907 · Indianapolis
First edition: A lovely (and college-educated!) Virginia girl gets caught up in international political intrigue and derring-do, revolving around a dashing hero with mysterious ties to the Austrian Empire, but a secret passion for the American dream. Written by an Indiana-born politician and diplomat, the tale — a national bestseller in its day — is illustrated with a total of => seven plates by Clarence F. Underwood, a prominent "pretty girl" artist who worked for the Saturday Evening Post and Ladies' World magazine.
The novel was made into a film in 1914 by the Famous Players Film Company and released just two months before the assassination of Archduke Franz Ferdinand of Austria.
Binding: Publisher's blue cloth, front cover with a woods vignette stamped in orange, brown, green, and white; spine with tree vignette. Signed binding: front panel with initials R.R. (Rome K. Richardson) between the design and the author's name; the initials are somewhat difficult to make out, but Richardson's records confirm that this binding was indeed his work. Binding as above, mild wear to edges and extremities, minor spots of rubbing to front cover, some soiling to back one, and noticeable rubbing to spine motif; front free endpaper with pencilled ownership inscription and annotations. => A fun read, of interest for its signed binding, its Underwood illustrations, and its perspective on America's role in global politics of the early 20th century. (Inventory #: 35664)