Robert Smith Surtees' Plain or Ringlets? Illustrated by John Leech. (London: Bradbury & Evans, 1860), first edition, 406 pages, red cloth binding with gilt lettering on spine and cover, and additional blind-stamped decoration around perimeter of cover, 8vo (6" x 9"), no dust jacket. Thirteen hand-colored plates and fifty-four wood-engravings in text. Deckled fore-edge. Housed in beautiful red leather slipcase with gilt lettering on spine. Surtees trained in his young life to build a career as a solicitor, but began writing for Sporting Magazine in 1831, and found his true calling. Immensely popular in the early Victorian period, Surtees was a pioneer of the English sporting novel and a biting satirist who supposedly had a significant influence on Charles Dickens. Surtees' Jorrocks' Jaunts and Jollities was said to be a touchstone in the construction of Dickens' Pickwick Papers. Plain or Ringlets is a society novel, more concerned with Victorian views on marriage and money, and was the last novel Surtees would see published in his lifetime. This copy is in good condition throughout, with noticeable separation of the front joint, slight chipping at the head and tail of the spine, and rubbed corners. Overall, this handsome volume would add to the library of anyone interested in Victorian literature and an author once deemed "England's anticipation of Mark Twain."

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    12th-13th Thursday-Friday
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