11 October 2002
STEINBECK, John. Cannery Row. London: William Heinemann, 1945.
8o. Original mustard cloth; dust jacket (spine panel slightly darkened, some light edgewear). Provenance: Juliet O'Hea (presentation inscription).
FIRST ENGLISH EDITION. A FINE ASSOCIATION COPY, INSCRIBED BY STEINBECK TO HIS ENGLISH LITERARY AGENT on the front free endpaper: "For Juliet O'Hea with much pleasure and many thanks John Steinbeck."
Steinbeck dedicated Cannery Row to his closest friend, Ed Ricketts, the model for the stories central character "Doc." This work, which immortalized a stretch of Monterey waterfront, sold well but met with critical fallout. Steinbeck shared his feelings about the pillaring with his editor Pat Covici: "The better people in this town don't know whether they like Cannery Row or not. They are waiting to see what other people think. This attitude is always true of better people. The critics say at once that it is not true to nature and that it is in bad taste. In nature two things do not occur--the wheel and good taste... There is a time in every writer's career that the critcs are gunning for him to whittle him down. This is my stage for that. It has been since The Grapes of Wrath (John Steinbeck, A Life in Letters, New York, 1975, p. 278). Goldstone and Payne A22b.
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