"Come right up close to me and I will show you something wonderful": First Edition of James and the Giant Peach; Signed by Roald Dahl and Illustrator Nancy Ekholm Burkert
James and the Giant Peach.
Dahl, Roald; Illustrated by Nancy Ekholm Burkert.
Item Number: 4305
New York: Alfred A. Knopf, 1961.
First edition of this Dahl classic. Octavo, original cloth, beautifully illustrated, many full-page and in color. Boldly signed by Roald Dahl on the front free endpaper and also signed by the illustrator, Nancy Ekholm Burkert on the half-title page. Near fine in the original dust jacket that shows some wear to the crown and foot of the spine and a few small closed tears. Housed in a custom half morocco clamshell box.
In 1953 Dahl married the actress Patricia Neal; they had three children, to whom he began to tell bedtime stories. James and the Giant Peach, the first of these to reach print, is a comic fantasy about a small boy who travels the world inside a huge peach, in company with several giant insects. Like most of Dahls childrens books, it first appeared in print in the United States (Carpenter & Prichard). It was made into the 1996 film produced by Tim Burton and Denise Di Novi, directed by Henry Selick, starring Paul Terry as James. "When Tim Burton approached Roald Dahl's widow about his plan to make a film of James and the Giant Peach, she asked him why he wanted to do it. Burton's answer clinched the deal: 'It's the only book that ever gave me any hope when I was a child" (D is for Dahl, 68).