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The Sign Of Four. Serial Issue
London: Ward, Lock and Co. [Philadelphia, J.B. Lippincott.] 1890, 1890. First Appearance. Volume XLV of Lippincott's Magazine spanning January to June 1890. Publisher's yellow cloth overprinted in black, with a red pebble grain coth spine, titled in gilt and black to spine. The yellow is soiled, but solid and bright, and the cloth spine is bumped and scuffed (with a small repair to the head) but is still tight and sound. Internally clean and fresh. A very good copy. One of the more mental (by which I mean typically, madly Victorian) Sherlock Holmes novels with stolen jewels looted during the Indian Mutiny, betrayal (so much nodding to Wilkie Coins it's a wonder someone's head doesn't fall off), a sinister blowpipe wielding Andaman Islander, Dr. Watson's love interest, a fair amount of cocaine and in fact many of the Sherlockian conventions that we hold so dear appeared first in this novel. The second of four full-length Sherlock Holmes novels, originally appearing in Lippincott's Monthly Magazine (Feb.1890). Doyle was reputedly commissioned to write the story following a dinner with the editor at London's Langham Hotel. The function was also attended by Oscar Wilde, who would contribute his only novel 'The Picture of Dorian Gray' to the July 1890 issue. Doyle later discussed this 'golden evening' in his autobiography 'Memories and Adventures' (1924). Green & Gibson; A Bibliography of A.Conan Doyle. De Waal; The World Bibliography of Sherlock Holmes & Dr. Watson. See also Haining; The Classic Era of Crime Fiction (2002), Cooper & Pike; Detective Fiction (1994), DeWaal; The International Sherlock Holmes (1980), Steinbrunner & Penzler; Ency.of Mystery & Detection (1976). Eric Quayle; The Collectors Book of Detective Fiction (1972). Howard Haycraft; Murder for Pleasure (1972), Graham Greene & Dorothy Glover; Victorian Detective Fiction (1966), Elley Queen; Queen's Quorum (1951).
      [Bookseller: Adrian Harrington Rare Books]
Last Found On: 2014-08-13           Check availability:      Biblio    


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