DescriptionW. Somerset Maugham. The Making of a Saint. Boston: L. C. Page, 1898.
First edition, first state. Octavo. 351 pages.
Publisher's gray cloth with gold stamping and decorations in white, black, and green. Unlike other states of this edition with some amount of the lettering in black, all the lettering on the spine and front of this state is gold. The publisher notes that "26 copies of the first edition were bound in some sort of special binding, possibly for presentation." This gold-lettered state is generally accepted as the special binding, being far scarcer than other states. Cloth is lightly rubbed and soiled. Spine is leaning and darkened with the bottom edge splitting. Ex-library copy with the card pocket attached to the rear pastedown and the library's label on the front pastedown. Overall, a very good copy of this scarce state.
This, Maugham's second novel, was influenced by the postulations of Andrew Lang who asserted that young writers had neither the experience nor the depth to write about their own time and were, therefore, better off studying the past and attempting historical novels. Mindful of this, and always with one eye on what was selling, Maugham dove into historical fiction with The Making of a Saint, a novel based on a story by Machiavelli set in fifteenth century Italy against the backdrop of the Forli insurrection of 1487. Saint was generally reviewed as a competent but somewhat stiff production. It failed to attract the critical attention that Liza had and did not go into a second edition.
Stott A2a.. Morgan, p. 66. From the Collection of Norman F. Moore.
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