"THE FIRST NOVEL OF AN EXCEPTIONAL WRITER": FIRST EDITION OF BLINDNESS, 1926, HENRY GREEN'S ACCLAIMED DEBUT WORK
(YORKE, Henry) GREEN, Henry. Blindness. London & Toronto: J.M. Dent & Sons, 1926. Octavo, original blue cloth, original dust jacket. $3800.
First edition of the first novel by Henry Yorke, best known by his pen name of Henry Green, written at 18, in original dust jacket.
Henry Yorke, writing as Henry Green, "was one of the most lyrically gifted writers in our language" (Atlantic). Blindness, his debut work about a young writer struck blind, was written at 18 and published at 21 while at Oxford. Its publication "announced the entry on the literary stage of the most genuinely original novelist of his day" (Encounter). Blindness is "the first novel of an exceptional writer, and it is partly about how the main character manages to become that. 'There is more than one way of being blind,' Green told a friend… V.S. Pritchett later said Green was 'the most luminous novelist of the 30s and 40s—as Blindness foretold—and truly seminal'… always trying something new, he went on exploring the unique vision first opened up by Blindness" (Jeremy Treglown). To John Sturrock, the novel speaks to the very act of writing: "Writers do not need to see but to feel, to get away from reality by closing their eyes to it. This exchange of the sensual for the cerebral… is symbolized overpoweringly in Blindness" (Times Literary Supplement). All of Green's novels "buzz with life while he takes up, time and again, the central human dilemma of love versus loneliness. Along the way he somehow manages to turn 'the broken bottles our lives are' into art" (Washington Post). First edition, first issue with no statement of printings on copyright page. See Connolly, Modern Movement 59.
Interior fresh and crisp, tiny bit of coloring to edges of bright cloth; expert restoration to lovely dust jacket. A desirable near-fine copy.