“I'm tired of people who have not been at war who know all about it": First Edition, First Issue of John Steinbeck's The Moon Is Down

  • The Moon Is Down.
  • The Moon Is Down.
  • The Moon Is Down.
  • The Moon Is Down.

The Moon Is Down.

Item Number: 47592

New York: The Viking Press, 1942.

First edition, first issue with large the period between the words “talk” and “this” on p. 112. Octavo, original blue cloth. Near fine in an excellent dust jacket with light rubbing and wear. Jacket illustration by Frank Lieberman. A very nice example.

In 1941 Steinbeck met “with officials of the Foreign Information Service, a newly formed unit of what would soon become the Office of Strategic Services, to discuss the future of American counterpropaganda efforts. The Moon Is Down, begun later the same month, had its origins in Steinbeck’s long-standing desire to contribute to these efforts… Steinbeck submitted a first finished draft of The Moon Is Down, originally written as a play (called ‘The New Order’) and set in a mid-sized town in the United States, to agency officials; they turned it down, concerned that the prospect of an occupied America might lower morale. Early in December Steinbeck began revising the work, shifting the setting to a generic northern Europe and recasting the play as a novel; he sent his revised draft to Pascal Covici, his editor at Viking, later in December. The Moon Is Down [as a novel] appeared in book form in March 1942. A stage version opened on Broadway on April 9, 1942, and was published by Dramatists Play Service in New York later in the same year” (Library of America).