“HE HAD GLIMPSES OF THE DEAD, CALMLY EXPECTANT EMPTINESS OF HIS SURROUNDINGS WITH WHICH THE EMPTINESS OF HIS SOUL SEEMED DETERMINED TO BLEND”: FIRST EDITION OF MAXIM GORKY'S THE SPY: THE STORY OF A SUPERFLUOUS MAN; INSCRIBED BY HIM
The Spy: The Story of a Superfluous Man.
Item Number: 51082
New York: B. W. Huebsch, 1918.
First American edition. Octavo, original cloth. Inscribed by Maxim Gorky on the front free endpaper in both English and Cyrillic. Translated from the Russian by Thomas Seltzer. Books signed and inscribed by Gorky are uncommon.
Written soon after the Russian Revolution of 1905, The Spy tells the story of 14-year-old orphan Yevsey Klimkov and his descent into isolation and fear when he refuses to spy for a network of military police informers in a small town near Petersburg. The book was banned by Tsar Nicholas II for over a decade until the Tsarist autocracy was dismantled in 1917.