NEIGHBOURS. With 2 ALS from the Author.
Edition: First printing.
London: Robert Holden & Co, 1926. SIGNED hardcover first edition - Uncommon first edition of the author's very original first novel (a review in Punch stated it "grew upon me with every page, until I came to the dramatic climax . . often brilliant . . [with] the brilliance of fever, almost of delirium.). This copy has several pieces laid in - most significantly two autographed notes SIGNED by Houghton - and other pieces which give a glimpse into the history of this copy. Included is an index card with the notation "original copy lost" and that the second copy is a "valuable first edition." Apparently the owner, Jeannette K. Multer (1910 to 2001), still living in New York at the time, had requested from Harper's Magazine more information about Claude Houghton and his books. The first note from Houghton is a brief one on a card with the letterhead of the Savage Club in London, dated 7 VI 1932, stating that he had seen that notice (he included the clipping) and he was sending her his address. The second ALS is 4 pages, also on Savage Club letterhead, dated 11 July 1932, which begins by thanking her for her letter. He goes on to state that a writer should never attempt to explain a symbolic novel, since it has as many explanations as it has readers, but then he does give what he calls a "bad explanation." Other interesting content including the fact that he was "amused to hear the rumor of his suicide" and in discussing publicity for his books, he comments that complaining to his publisher's wouldn't do much good, since authors "nearly always do complain." Both notes are in the original mailing envelopes. Around 1950, Jeannette and her husband moved to Arizona where she opened 2 bookstores - the Dolphin in 1955 in Phoenix and Multer's in Scottsdale in 1959. At Christmas 1961, several of the women who worked at Multer's got together and ordered this copy from England as a gift for Jeannette. Laid in is the letter confirming the order from the British Book Centre, as well as gift cards, and thus her brief correspondence with Houghton was once again tucked into a copy of the book.
Condition: Very good in tan cloth gilt lettering on the spine (foxing on a few preliminary pages, some spine slant, bookplate and inscription on front endpaper)