Ghost Stories and Presentiments
1888, Arthur Conan Doyle's first appearance in book form with five short stories of horror and the supernatural
First edition, second state. Hardback, bound in blue cloth boards with gilt titling to spine and red printed titling and design of ghoulish figure to upper board. 19.5 × 13cm, 308pp, 12pp ads.
This rare collection of horror and supernatural stories is Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's first appearance in book form. Conan Doyle's five stories in this book are: The Great Keinplatz Experiment; Selecting a Ghost; The Mystery of the Sassaa Valley; The Captain of the 'Pole-Star', and John Barrington Cowles. There are twelve stories and poems in all, none have an author credited, but four of Conan Doyle's are annotated with where they had been published previously (this is the second outing for the stories, four of them having been published in the literary journals of the day).
This book was first published in 1887 by George Redway as an expensive triple-decker (a three-volume set) entitled Ghostland and Deamland. However, the sales were poor so the publisher repackaged the sheets in single volumes and retitled them into Dream Warnings and Mysteries; Strange Stories of Coincidence and Ghostly Adventure; and Ghost Stories and Presentiments. The adverts to the rear of the book are for books of a supernatural or esoteric nature.
A rare book but in fair condition only. The blue cloth rubbed and bumped, with a red stain to the top left corner of the upper board, and some scattered black ink markings to the rear board. The inner binding is pulled, the front hinge is cracked but no pages are detached, there is some movement to the biding throughout the book but it is stable. The pages are tanned, with some spots of foxing. However, the book is complete and remains in readable condition with gentle handling, and is a rare entry in Conan Doyle's bibliography.
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