First Edition of Saul Bellow's Herzog; Inscribed by Him to his Editor
Item Number: 12094
New York : The Viking Press, 1964.
First edition of the author’s second of three National Book Award winning novels, which was and remains an unprecedented literary accomplishment. Octavo, original blue cloth. Association copy, inscribed by the author to his editor on the front free endpaper, “For Aaron and Linda, affectionately, Saul.” The recipient was Bellow’s editor Aaron Asher and his wife Linda. Asher also edited Philip Roth, Arthur Miller and many others. Fine in a near fine dust jacket with light toning to the spine. Jacket design by Mel Williamson. Housed in a custom half morocco clamshell box. A significant association.
A novel complex, compelling, absurd and realistic, Herzog became a classic almost as soon as it was published in 1964. In it Saul Bellow tells the tale of Moses E. Herzog, a tragically confused intellectual who suffers from the breakup of his second marriage, the general failure of his life and the specter of growing up Jewish in the middle part of the 20th century. He responds to his personal crisis by sending out a series of letters to all kinds of people. The letters in total constitute a thoughtful examination of his own life and that which has occurred around him. What emerges is not always pretty, but serves as gritty foundation for this absorbing novel. "A masterpiece" (The New York Times).