Description

    Edgar Rice Burroughs. The Mucker. Chicago: A. C. McClurg & Co., 1921. First edition of the complete text, first printing, dated "1921" on the title-page. Presentation copy, inscribed by the author in black ink on the title-page to his first wife, Emma Hulbert Burroughs, two days after publication: "My first copy of the American / Edition; rec'd Nov 2 1921 / With love to Emma / From / Ed / Tarzana Ranch." Octavo (7.625 x 5.0625 inches; 194 x 134 mm.). [10], 414, [3, advertisements], [5, blank] pages. Five plates, including sepia frontispiece, by J. Allen St. John (1872-1957). "M. A. Donohue & Co., Printers and Binders, Chicago" (verso of title-page). Original pale green cloth ruled and lettered in brownish-red on front cover and spine (binding measurements: 7.875 x 5.1875 inches; 200 x 132 mm.). Cloth soiled in places and blistering slightly at outer edge of front cover; spine a bit faded; corners lightly bumped; spine extremities, corners, and board edges lightly rubbed; cloth beginning to fray at foot of spine; a few tiny areas of cloth neatly touched up at head of spine, on top edge, and at corner tips; hinges almost invisibly repaired; free endpapers discolored (possibly renewed?). Text slightly age-toned; light foxing to edges, and occasionally to text, primarily to plates and adjacent leaves; offsetting from the plates to facing pages; tiny nick to outer edge of pages 13/14 and 15/16; short creased tear in the outer margin of pages 19/20, 21/22, and 23/24; vertical crease from the lower edge of pages 305/306, entering the text and touching a couple of letters in the last six lines; over-opened between pages 292 and 293, and 358 and 359. Despite these flaws, a very good copy. In the original color pictorial dust jacket with artwork by J. Allen St. John on the front panel (reproduced as the plate facing page 128). "Price $1.90" on rear panel. Jacket professionally restored, with a few areas of expert recoloring on the front panel, including to "The" and the "M" in "Mucker;" a few letters and the rules at top and bottom of spine recolored or supplied in manuscript; two letters on the rear panel supplied in manuscript (the "e" and "p" in "Joseph"). There is a small area of surface loss remaining on the front panel; a small faint stain on the rear panel; a pink dampstain visible only on the verso of the front panel; tape residue on the verso of the spine; and the folds beginning to crack in a few places. A carefully restored example of an uncommon dust jacket, that despite the restoration, presents extremely well.

    The Mucker "is unusual for several reasons. First, it is almost a quarter-inch taller than all the other McClurg first editions. Secondly, this was the only Burroughs book published in England before it was published in the United States. The English publisher, Methuen, published part I of The Mucker on October 6, 1921, 25 days before this McClurg American first edition. Lastly, this was one of Burroughs' personal favorites, and ERB is quoted as having said that he thought that it one of his best novels" (Zeuschner (1996)). It is also one of Burroughs's longest novels, with approximately 125,000 words. Bleiler, Science-Fiction: The Early Years, 330; Bleiler, The Checklist of Science-Fiction and Supernatural Fiction (1978), p. 35; Heins M-1 ("The far-flung adventures of a Chicago hoodlum, Billy Byrne, to prove himself to the girl he loves"); Reginald 02301; Zeuschner (1996) 359; Zeuschner (2016), p. 216, no. 3.


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