Gideon Planish

Gideon Planish

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Author: Lewis, Sinclair [Harry] (1885-1951)

Year: 1943

Publisher: Random House

Place: New York


[i-viii+3-438+[439-40] pages. Octavo (8 3/16" x 5 5/8") issued in beige cloth with gilt "SL" on cover; gilt lettering of title and author over red rectangles on spine with gilt lozenge around cover initials; celtic design on spine. 50,000 copies of the first editon in dust jacket. (Pastore: 267) 1st edition in a first state jacket.

The satiric target of this 1943 novel is the voracity of fundraising, overblown causes and, ultimately, lewis's opinion that Americans are to quick to swallow "bunk." Unfortunately, but certainly purposefully, this book was written at the height of the war effort where everyone was involved in selling war bonds, etc. The title character is an ademic who marries into a family of professional philanthropists and fundraisers and who, therefore, must leave the tranquil setting of academia for the hustle-bustle world of financial hype. Like other heroes of earlier works, this one, too, is smothered by social forces larger than himself; unlike the others, his rebellion results not so much in inner change as submission. Lewis's wife, Dorothy Thompson, makes a veiled appearance in the novel as one of the hucksters and serves a a segue into the deadly female that arises in the next novel, Cass Timberlane. This book was not unsuccessful, however, there being two versions of the dust jacket due to sales that exceeded Random House's expections. The first state dust jacket has a red rectangle on the spine, the second state has white. (Pastore: 263). If sunned the red often fades and it is sometimes difficult to make the difference.


Corners bumped. Dust jacket corners and spine ends chipped with 1/4" loss, edge wear with closed tears, small chips and creases. A very good copy in about a very good dust jacket.

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