The Natural.

"We have two lives... the life we learn with and the life we live after that": First Edition of Bernard Malamud’s The Natural; Inscribed by Him To Close Friends

The Natural.

MALAMUD, Bernard.

$7,800.00

Item Number: 100076

New York: Harcourt Brace and Company, 1952.

First edition of the author’s first book, and one of the greatest baseball novels of all time. Octavo, original cloth. Advance review copy with the slip laid in for a release date of August 21, 1952. Association copy, inscribed by the author on the front free endpaper one month before the date of publication, “For Susie and Paul Cordially Bern July, 1952.” The recipients, Suzanne and Paul Shrag were close friends of Malamud. Near fine in a near fine dust jacket. Cover art by Simon Goltche. Housed in a custom clamshell box.

"Malamud has done something which—now that he has done it!—looks as if we have been waiting for it all our lives. He has really raised the whole passion and craziness and fanaticism of baseball as a popular spectacle to its ordained place in mythology" (Alfred Kazin). It was the basis for the 1984 film bearing the same name directed by Barry Levinson and starring Robert Redford, Glenn Close, and Robert Duvall. Variety called the film "impeccably made ... fable about success and failure in America." James Berardinelli praised The Natural as "[a]rguably the best baseball movie ever made." Sports writer Bill Simmons has argued, "Any 'Best Sports Movies' list that doesn't feature either Hoosiers or The Natural as the No. 1 pick shouldn't even count."

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