Book Description

FIRST EDITION. 8vo. Original grey cloth, spine lettered in silver. Slight cocking to spine, extremities bruised, toned. Else, clean and tidy. In the original monochrome and red-lettered photographic dust jacket: spine sunned, chipping to spine ends and corners, creasing and wear to edges, staining and toning to reverse. Nevertheless a striking edition of Fairbairn's first novel. Scarce in the trade, especially in the dust jacket, which features photographs and details of 'Recent First Novelists' to its rear panel, including Christina Hobhouse.
Dealer Notes
The British author, poet, feminist and Spare Rib's poetry editor published Live As Family at 19, while in her first year at St Andrew's University. Her bildungsroman, which satirised the governess-turned-love trope, was critically well-received: "I was reviewed, interviewed, photographed, autograph-hunted, wined, dined, flirted-with and flattered. [Fairbairns tells us] One male journalist was kind enough to describe me in print as 'an attractive brunette.'" She was not, however, apparently attractive enough: "the photograph of my face which appeared on the front of my book, wasn't really me. It had started out as a photograph of me, but the publishers' design team had obviously decided that in my natural state I wasn't good enough. I didn't have the long eyelashes of Sandie Shaw, the pallor and gauntness of Twiggy, or the cheekbones of Mary Quant. So they had got out their airbrushes and improved me." Fairbairns subsequently struggled to get later novels accepted by mainstream publishing houses: "One [publisher] spoke for many when she said, 'I'm sure there IS a novel to be written about the Women's Lib movement but yours isn't funny enough." (ibid). Instead, Fairbairns' best known novel, Benefits (1979), was published by Virago and garnered broad critical attention, featured in "Time Out magazine's alternative bestsellers, was translated into Swedish, Danish, Turkish and German, and published as a mass-market paperback in the USA." Zoe Fairbairns (2017) 'Feminist Publishing: Then, now and in the future'. Keynote Lecture at Five Leaves Bookshop's Feminist Publishing event. Seller Inventory # 2371
Author FAIRBAIRNS, Zoë; CINAMON, Gerald (DJ design)
Date 1968
Publisher London: Macmillan
Condition Very good/ good only

Price: £60.00

Offered by Quair Books

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