"THE KIND OF STYLE AND STORY THAT HAS A BOGART TWIST TO ITS MOUTH": FIRST EDITION OF ROSS MACDONALD'S DOOMSTERS
MACDONALD, Ross. The Doomsters. New York: Alfred A. Knopf, 1958. Octavo, original purple and white paper-covered boards, original dust jacket. $2000.
First edition of Macdonald's 7th Lew Archer novel, praised for revealing how "the hardboiled private detective story can become literature," a splendid copy in the original dust jacket.
"The most significant detective novelist of his generation… Macdonald developed the detective novel into a form capable of combining aesthetic pleasure with moral seriousness" (ANB). Propelled by turbulent changes in his personal life, Macdonald considered Doomsters, his 7th Lew Archer novel, a turning point in the series by "loosening the hold of Hammett and Chandler" (Williams, Hidden in Plain Sight, 81). "Bold in its complex design… with its sure pace and crisp prose, Doomsters belonged with the best of the previous Archers." To famed critic Anthony Boucher, "Doomsters exemplified how 'the hardboiled private detective story can become literature… James Sandoe liked it too ('a milieu evoked with singular and precise imagination')" (Nolan, Ross Macdonald, 181-88). Maconald remains the master "of the whipcord thriller, with not one spare ounce of flesh on the crackling dialogue. It's the kind of style and story that has a Bogart twist to its mouth" (Bookman). "First Edition" stated on copyright page. Bruccoli, Checklist, 39-40. Magill, 1135-40. Reilly, 987-89. Bruccoli & Layman, 243. Steinbrunner & Penzler, 262-63. Hubin II:I,527.
An exceptional copy in fine condition.