FIRST EDITION OF MINARIK'S LITTLE BEAR, WITH ILLUSTRATIONS BY MAURICE SENDAK, SIGNED BY HIM
(SENDAK, Maurice) MINARIK, Else Holmelund. Little Bear. New York: Harper & Brothers, (1957). Octavo, original half black cloth, pictorial boards, original dust jacket. $1300.
First edition, in later-issue dust jacket, of Minarik's four stories about Little Bear, with illustrations by Maurice Sendak—the first of the "I Can Read" series of books—this copy inscribed and signed by Sendak on the front free endpaper: "To Jerry! Maurice Sendak."
This is the first of first-grade teacher Minarik's popular Little Bear series of readers, and also the first of Harper's "I Can Read" books. "Although the language in Little Bear is simple and the sentences are short, Minarik created a truly lovable character… What Minarik does not put into words, illustrator Maurice Sendak more than ably adds in the illustrations" (Silvey, 463). It contains "much of [Sendak's] best work" (Carpenter & Prichard, 475). Later-issue dust jacket, with Harper & Row listed as the publisher (rather than Harper & Brothers), HarperCrest label affixed to recto, and additional "I Can Read" titles advertised on the verso. Hanrahan A26.
Only occasional soiling to interior, faint offsetting to endpapers, light edge-wear; later-issue price-clipped dust jacket with light rubbing to extremities, shallow chip to lower edge of front panel. A very good signed copy.