[Item #55171] Christmas Holiday. W. Somerset MAUGHAM.

Christmas Holiday

London: William Heinemann Ltd., [1939]. First Edition. First Impression, one of 20,000 copies. Octavo (19.75cm); navy blue cloth, with titling and author's emblem stamped in gilt and black on spine and front cover; blue topstain; dustjacket; [vi],289,[1]pp. Two small adhesive stains to upper front pastedown, faint foxing to text edges; Near Fine. Dustjacket is unclipped (priced 7/6 net), with some trivial wear to extremities, faint foxing on verso, and sunning to the teal portions of the spine panel; still a sharp, Very Good+ or better example.

"In December of 1932, W. Somerset Maugham went to Paris to attend the trial of Guy Albert Davin, who had been sentenced to life for murdering his rich American friend Richard Wall. The crime had homosexual overtones, but Maugham was more interested in the character of the murderer and the French penal system. From the trial and subsequent visit to French Guiana he fashioned his 1939 novel, Christmas Holiday. The story was not for the prudish, and has never been one of the author's best-known works. But it epitomizes his love - and concern - for the morbid details found in ordinary lives and remote locales" (The Dark Page, Vol.1, p.194). Basis for Robert Siodmak's 1944 film noir of the same name, starring Deanna Durbin, Gene Kelly, and Richard Wharf. STOTT A54a. See: Morgan, Ted. Maugham: A Biography (1980).

Price: $300.00

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