Book Description

FIRST EDITION. 4to, pp. xi, [i], 95, [1] + colour frontis and three plates by Peggy Whistler. Re-bound in quarter brown calf, inner edges gilt roll-tooled, spine divided by five raised bands, red and olive morocco labels, lettered in gilt, other compartments tooled centrally in gilt. Marbled endpapers. Bottom corners bruised, small bald patch to leading edge of upper board, edges toned, with a few spots. Toned, hinges reinforced at pp. 44 & 45; fourth plate & p. 49 with white paper. PO pencil notes to recto of rear pastedown: “Rebound P[?] 7/88 - £23.50”. Else, clean and tidy. A smart copy of Evans’ first novel.
Dealer Notes
Peggy Whistler (1909–1958) was an author and artist with deep connections to the Welsh borders. Her first commission came from Basil Blackwell, for which she produced the striking b/w illustrations for Alfred Williams' Tales from the Panchatantra (1930). Whistler, however, soon redirected her creative energies to writing and illustrating her own books. Her nom de plume, Margiad Evans, “was partly inspired by her stay at Pontllyfni in Caernarvonshire, where she worked on her first novel, Country Dance (1932), which evokes tensions in a nineteenth-century Welsh border community. The tightly constructed narrative brings to life the voice—silenced by male violence—of the young daughter of a Welsh mother and English father, torn between conflicting identities and suitors” (ODNB). Whistler apparently relished her pseudonymous sleight of hand, with contemporary reviewers ignorant of the fact that illustrator and author were in fact one and the same.
After the success of Country Dance, three further novels – The Wooden Doctor (1933), Turf or Stone (1934), and Creed (1936) – followed, again all self-illustrated.
Author EVANS, Margiad (pseud. Peggy WHISTLER)
Date 1932
Publisher London: Arthur Baker
Condition Very good

Price: £45.00

Offered by Quair Books

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