The Winter Murder Case: A Philo Vance Story

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Author: S. S. Van Dine, [PSEUD Willard Huntington Wright (1888-1939)]

Year: 1939

Publisher: Charles Scribner's Sons

Place: New York


xviii+174+[7 ad] pages. Small octavo (7 1/2" x 5 1/4") bound in original publisher's black clot with red lettering to spine and cover in original publisher's jacket. (Firsts 31) First edition. 

The last Philo Vance was published posthumously from the manuscript of a draft that was completed shortly before Wright's death. Maxwell Perkins, declined to change anything in it and published it as he found it. As a result, the book is quite short, less than half the length of the early titles. The classic format was followed: the index card and the stamping are in red and the book is bound in black cloth. It was priced at $1.75, the only one of the books not priced at $2.00. The print run was small. With exception of Benson and perhaps the Canary, this is the most elusive of the Vance titles. 

The Winter Murder Case (1939) is a Philo Vance novella that S. S. Van Dine intended to expand into his twelfth full-length book, a project cut short by his death. The Winter Murder Case seems especially similar to the B mystery movies of the 1930s, a cross between Van Dine's usual style and the film style. It was intended as a vehicle for Sonja Henie.


Corners gently bumped, very light soiling, some offsetting to pastedowns. Jacket: Quarter inch chip at front heal inge, light edge wear with some closed tears and small chips, spine ends lightly chipped else very good. 


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