- East of Eden
- John Steinbeck
- Heinemann, U.K. 1952
According to Wikipedia, Steinbeck claimed, in regard to East of Eden, “I think everything else I have written has been, in a sense, practice for this.” It became an instant classic, even though critics of the period were not universally impressed by it.
The true first edition of East of Eden is the 1952 American Viking first edition. This is the first British edition, which came out later the same year. The cover art is similar, but the British first has a simpler design. The back of the British edition has a larger photo of Steinbeck.
This copy is in very good/fair condition. The book is fine other than moderate tanning of the page edges. The dust jacket, however, has some tears and some chipping, the worst being that the bottom 4 cm are missing from the spine.
The original price of 15 shillings is still intact.
The dust jackets of both editions are prone to disintegration, so copies with no damage are getting very rare. Be a little suspicious if the dust jacket sounds too good. It is not unheard of to find copies with no fading, chipping or tears, but I have also seen copies for sale with reproduction dust jackets, as well as copies with nicely repaired dust jackets. Of course, it goes without saying that these are much less valuable than un-repaired originals in the same shape.
Note the minimal information on the copyright page, common with these older books.