Chicago, IL: Privately Printed for the Friends of Walter M. Hill, Christmas 1920. [Crime fiction] FIRST EDITION. Slim octavo (20 x 15cm), pp.39; , blank. Bound in publisher's mustard-coloured textured paper over boards with printed title label to spine, Japanese vellum endpapers, edges uncut, original off-white tissue jacket. Internally fine, covers fractionally bowed, a little wear/chipping to fragile jacket but overall an exceptionally well-preserved copy of a particularly scarce item. In this brilliant Sherlockian pastiche, which crime writer Ellery Queen claimed was one of the best ever written, Holmes investigates the disappearance of a rare copy of Shakespeare's famous play. Reportedly 100 copies were published for Bookseller Walter M Hill and 10 copies stated 'For the friends of Vincent Starrett'. Leading authority Randall Stack conducted a census in 2013 and records 51 surviving copies (both imprints combined), of which 24 copies are held in libraries. He described the book as "probably the most valuable Holmes story not written by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle" Item #55240
DeWaal 5195 (erroneously listing print run as 43 copies).
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