PRESENTATION/ASSOCIATION COPY OF ITALO CALVINO'S THE BARON IN THE TREES, WARMLY INSCRIBED BY HIM TO ROSLYN AND WILLIAM TARG
CALVINO, Italo. The Baron in the Trees. New York: Random House, (1959). Octavo, original cloth, original dust jacket. $2800.
First American edition of the renowned Italian fantasist's remarkable fifth book, inscribed by him to his literary agent Roslyn Targ and to noted editor and bibliophile William Targ: "For Roz and Bill, one of the oldest books of this old friend, Italo."
Calvino novels of the 1950s "marked a shift to the kind of fiction for which he became famous: fabulations, often set in between the Middle Ages and the Enlightenment, that deal wittily and exuberantly with questions of knowledge, formalism and ontology… The Baron in the Trees—in which an 18th-century baron's son climbs a tree in an act of defiance and ends up spending his life in various treetops—displays the narrative extravagance and intellectual playfulness that characterize Calvino's more overt fantasies" (Clute & Grant, 159). First published in Italian as Il Barone rampante in 1957. Translated by noted English translator Archibald Colquhoun, one of the first translators to introduce Calvino to English-language readers; his translation likely first appeared in the London edition brought out by Collins in 1959. See Barron, Fantasy and Horror 7-63 ("noteworthy"). Inkstamps of Roslyn Targ Literary Agency on front free endpaper. Literary agent Roslyn Targ handled foreign rights for Calvino's books; her husband William Targ was a noted editor and bibliophile who, in 1981, published a signed limited edition of one of Calvino's stories under his Targ Editions imprint.
Book fine, dust jacket with toning to spine, a few minuscule rubs. A near-fine inscribed association copy.