James M. Pickard Archives - Rare Book Insider

James M. Pickard

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book (2)

Wand Of Noble Wood

Nzekwu, Onuora First UK Edition. Publisher's black boards with author's name and publisher in gilt and title in white, to the spine. Offsetting to both sets of end-papers and the pastedown side of the FEP has "Martin Banham* (Review copy - Review of English Literature Apl. 1962)" written in ink else VG+. The VG dustwrapper is browned/ worn/ frayed at tips of spine, corners similarly so, the hinge of the front inner flap has a faint tide mark running along from top to bottom (not that obvious) and several minor dark brown spots to the back panel (how these were caused is anyone's guess); the back panel is reasonably clean otherwise. The cream/white lettering to the spine is toned (as usually found). It looks nicer than it sounds and the dustwrapper is complete. First book. N. B.: This book was later reprinted by Heinemann as part of their African Writers Series. "In 1961, Ekwensi and Achebe, the two Igbo fathers of the Nigerian novel, were joined by Onuora Nzekwu with a full-size novel, A Wand of Noble Wood, which was rightly hailed as a promise of future prosperity for Nigerian creative writing in English" (Gérard). Gerard asserts that "this was the first modern novel in which an attempt was made to render the specific quality of traditional life, a trend which remained Nzekwu's peculiar theme". Nzekwu was awarded the Rockefeller Foundation Fellowship in 1961, a UNESCO Fellowship in 1964, and in 2008 he was conferred with the honour of the Officer of the Order of the Niger (OON). Albert S. Gérard, European-language Writing in Sub-Saharan Africa, 1986". The novel has been compared to Achebe's "No Longer at Ease". The novel is deeply descriptive and explanatory of Ibo culture, one critic even describing it as "ostensibly a novel which contains as much anthropological explanation as any reader could desire". The examination of traditional culture becomes a thematic emphasis, with deep exploration of topics like tribal marriage. Martin Banham is the Emeritus Professor of Drama and Theatre Studies at the University of Leeds. He has a special interest in theatre and performance culture of Africa. Photographs/scans available upon request.
  • $326
The Death of Reginald Perrin

The Death of Reginald Perrin

Nobbs, David Publisher's red boards with gilt lettering to the spine. About VG (pushing to the spine tips, foxing to the page block edges, a former owner's book-plate to the front paste-down) in like dustwrapper priced £3.60 to the inside flap (as called for). The dustwrapper is faded to the Gollancz red spine logo and lettering with minor creasing and wear at the base of the spine and with a couple of short edge tears. First in a series of comic novels starring Reginald Perrin senior sales executive at Sunshine Desserts. "Even if the output of Sunshine Desserts appalled Reggie – one suggested slogan: "I like to stroke my nipple with Strawberry and Lychee Ripple" – it's nevertheless a reminder that this was the Britain of manufacturing rather than service industries" (The Guardian). The book-plate to the front paste-down is that of Eric Goldrein who was a WW2 hero who captured 60 German soldiers while wounded during the Normandy landings. He later became a Liverpool barrister. ‘The Death of Reginald Perrin’ is the book that found national fame when David Nobbs converted it into a TV series starring Leonard Rossiter. It tells the tale of Reginald Iolanthe Perrin, a senior sales executive at Sunshine Desserts, who behaves more and more strangely, until eventually he leaves all his clothes on a beach, goes off to lead a new life. This book – the first in a series of three – tells of Reggie’s adventures as he tries to find a meaning to this life. Quite uncommon in our experience. Photographs/scans available upon request.
  • $254