"The tragedy is not that things are broken. The tragedy is that things are not mended again": First Edition of Cry The Beloved Country; Inscribed by Alan Paton
Cry, the Beloved Country.
Item Number: 44024
London: Jonathan Cape, 1948.
First edition of Paton’s classic novel. Octavo, original beige cloth with titles to the spine in brown. Signed and dated by the author on the front free endpaper in the year of publication, “Alan Paton November 2, 1948.” Fine in a near fine dust jacket with a small closed tear. Laid into this copy is an original bookmark for the screening of the film, held in Pretoria, South Africa. Housed in a custom half morocco clamshell box. A superior example of an important work, rarely encountered signed.
The most famous and important novel in South Africa's history, and an immediate worldwide bestseller when it was published in 1948, Alan Paton's impassioned novel about a black man's country under white man's law is a work of searing beauty. The eminent literary critic Lewis Gannett wrote, "We have had many novels from statesmen and reformers, almost all bad; many novels from poets, almost all thin. In Alan Paton's Cry, the Beloved Country the statesman, the poet and the novelist meet in a unique harmony." "The greatest novel to emerge out of the tragedy of South Africa, and one of the best novels of our time" (The New Republic). Two cinema adaptations of the book have been made, the first in 1951, which was directed by Zoltán Korda, starring Canada Lee, Sidney Poitier, and Charles Carson. The second in 1995, starring James Earl Jones and Richard Harris. The novel was also adapted as a musical called Lost in the Stars (1949), with a book by the American writer Maxwell Anderson and music composed by the German emigre Kurt Weill.