SIGNED LIMITED FIRST EDITION OF THE ABSOLUTELY ESSENTIAL ELOISE, SIGNED BY HILARY KNIGHT
KNIGHT, Hilary. Kay Thompson's Eloise: The Absolutely Essential Edition. (New York): Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers, (1999). Slim quarto, original white cloth, mounted cover illustration, original slipcase, original shipping carton. $1100.
Signed limited first edition of the "Absolutely Essential" Eloise, number 23 of 250 copies signed by illustrator Hilary Knight, including not only the complete text of Kay Thompson's cherished classic with Knight’s wonderful illustrations, but also a "scrapbook" of information, photographs and art relating to the creation and subsequent history of Thompson's precocious alter ego.
"Eloise's birth was unexpected. At rehearsals of her act with the Williams Brothers, Thompson [who was a professional singer] prized punctuality. Then one day she was late. In a high, childish voice that she had never used before, she made her apology. One of her co-workers said, 'Who are you, little girl?' Thompson replied, 'I am Eloise. I am six.' The others joined in the game, each assuming a juvenile identity, and it became a regular rehearsal pastime" (New York Times). That pastime became a book, with three more to follow in Thompson's lifetime. Eloise first published 1955. This "Absolutely Essential" edition includes 18 pages of new material (written by Marie Brenner).