11 October 2002
CHEEVER, John. The Stories. Franklin Center, PA: The Franklin Library, 1980.
8o. Illustrated by Mitchell Hooks. Original black morocco gilt, all edges gilt. Provenance: Susan Cheever, daughter of John Cheever (presentation inscription).
Later deluxe edition. PRESENTATION COPY, INSCRIBED BY CHEEVER TO HIS DAUGHTER on the front flyleaf: "To my dearly beloved Daughter Susan John Cheever May 20, 1980."
CHEEVER, John. Three typed letters signed ("John") to Susan Cheever, "Cedar Lane," 8 August , 14 October 1978 and 21 January . Together 3 pages, 4o.
An intimate group of letters from Cheever to his daughter related to the first edition of this collection and to its success. He comments on their background and order in the first letter: "the most embarrasingly immature pieces have been dropped. These stories seem at times to be stories of a long-lost world when the city of New York was still filled with a river light, when you heard the Benny Goodman quartets from a radio in the corner stationery store, and when almost everybody wore a hat." The second letter discusses his encounter with the publisher's promotional ideas for the collection. The third letter ranges from Cheever's Voice of America interview to an entire paragraph on the fact that "Neither your mother nor Sara ever wear their mink coats... On Friday morning Bob called to say that the Collection had sold to paperback for $325,00.00. This is rather better than De Maupassant. The hard-cover sale will be over one hundred thousand and the book is #3 on the best-seller list... To celebrate all of this I asked Spear over to play backgammon and won 80 cents." (4)
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