First Edition of John Kennedy Toole's Pulitzer Prize-winning novel A Confederacy of Dunces; Signed by Walker Percy
A Confederacy of Dunces.
Toole, John Kennedy; Foreword by Walker Percy.$7,800.00
Item Number: 89783
Baton Rouge: Louisiana State University Press, 1980.
First edition of the author’s Pulitzer Prize-winning masterpiece. Octavo, original cloth. Signed by Walker Percy on the title page, who wrote the foreword and upon his insistence had it published. Near fine in near fine first issue dust jacket. Jacket illustration by Ed Lindlof. Housed in a custom half morocco clamshell box. A very nice example, uncommon signed.
“A masterwork . . . the novel astonishes with its inventiveness . . . it is nothing less than a grand comic fugue" (The New York Times Book Review). The book's passage to success began in 1976 when John Kennedy Toole's mother Thelma, using a walker, hobbled into the office of the novelist Walker Percy at Loyola University. She was followed by a chauffeur carrying a manuscript that she told Mr. Percy was a ''masterpiece.'' Percy agreed to read it. He became entranced and decided that the novel was ''a major achievement, a huge comic-satiric-tragic one-of-a-kind rendering of life in New Orleans.'' After some more publishers rejected the book, Louisiana State University Press agreed to take a chance with a first printing of just 2,500 copies. It sold about 50,000 copies in hard cover and nearly 600,000 in paperback within three years of publication.