"SHE ROOTED HER FICTION IN AFRICAN AMERICAN HISTORY AND LITERATURE": FIRST EDITION OF OCTAVIA BUTLER'S PATTERNMASTER, BOLDLY INSCRIBED BY HER
BUTLER, Octavia. Patternmaster. Garden City: Doubleday, 1976. Octavo, original tan paper boards, original dust jacket.
First edition of the first published book in Butler's award-winning Patternist series—"a fundamental departure for science fiction"—inscribed on the title page by her, "To M— the collector, Best Wishes Octavia E. Butler."
"Butler walked a singular path. A writer from her poverty-stricken childhood to her death in 2006 at the age of 58, she committed her life to turning speculative fiction into a home for Black expression… Butler became the first science fiction author to be granted a MacArthur fellowship, and the first Black woman to win Hugo and Nebula awards. Today her influence spans literature, genres and media" (New York Times). Butler's Patternist series covers the lives and progeny "of two shape-shifters known as Doro and Anyanwu… the offspring of these two godlike characters give birth to the pattern, which is a telepathic matrix" (Hampton, Octavia E. Butler, 246; emphasis in original). She launched the series with Patternmaster, its first published book; in the series' five books, Butler links science fiction "directly to the Black American slavery experiences via the slave narrative. This is a fundamental departure for science fiction" (Govan, Homage to Tradition, 79). "As much as Butler influenced science fiction as a genre, her work also drew upon and contributed to the African American literary tradition… she rooted her fiction in African American history and literature" (Callahan, African American National Biography). First edition, first printing: with "First Edition'" stated on the copyright page. The Patternist books, in order of publication, are: Patternmaster (1976), Mind of My Mind (1977), Survivor (1978), Wild Seed (1980) and Clay's Ark (1984).
A fine copy.