The Razor’s Edge Original Dust Jacket Design Signed.

"THE FACT THAT A GREAT MANY PEOPLE BELIEVE SOMETHING IS NO GUARANTEE OF ITS TRUTH”: Rare Original Sketch of the Dust Jacket of W. Somerset Maugham's The Razor's Edge; Signed by him

The Razor’s Edge Original Dust Jacket Design Signed.

MAUGHAM, W. Somerset.


Item Number: 128489

Garden City, NY: Doubleday Doran & Company, 1944.

Rare W. Somerset Maugham’s original ink sketch showing his dust jacket design concept for his greatest novel, The Razor’s Edge,
executed on a blank Western Union telegram form, which was followed by the publisher pretty much to the letter. A striking piece of literary history demonstrating that the author’s intentions for the book were honored from the text to the jacket itself, including his signature Moroccan symbol, used on nearly all his books, including reprints; and an interesting example of a major author’s notion of self-representation. In his autobiographical book, The Summing Up, Maugham wrote of the symbol: “[My father] took it into his head to build a house to live in during the summer… He ordered a great quantity of glass on which he had engraved a sign against the Evil Eye which he had found in Morocco and which the reader may see on the cover of this book.” In near fine condition. The entire piece measures 8.25 inches by 6 inches. An exceptional piece of literary history.

"Written after much painstaking research into Eastern philosophy and mysticism, The Razor’s Edge is Maugham’s 20th-century manifesto for human fulfillment. In it he mercilessly satirizes American and European materialism, and holds up the figure of the spiritual seeker as a model for those searching for meaning in existence" (Stringer). It was twice adapted into film, first in 1946 starring Tyrone Power and Gene Tierney, and Herbert Marshall as Maugham and Anne Baxter as Sophie, and then a 1984 adaptation starring Bill Murray.

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