May 12, 2011 - Sale 2247

Sale 2247 - Lot 237

Price Realized: $ 8,400
Show Hammer Price?Final Price Realized includes Buyer’s Premium added to Hammer Price
Estimate: $ 4,000 - $ 6,000
ONLY KNOWN COPY IN FIRST STATE JACKET (DETECTIVE FICTION.) Daly, Carroll John. The Snarl of the Beast. 8vo, first state green cloth stamped in red and black, cocked; top edges stained red, endpapers toned and with owner's contemporary ink inscription and bookplate; first state dust jacket, minor chips at ends of spine panel, corners, and lower front panel, scattered rubbing with loss of color along front fold, other creases and short clean tears, but almost completely intact and still bright with no restoration. New York: Edward J. Clode, Inc., (1927)

Additional Details

first edition of the only known copy in a true first state dust jacket. The only previously seen dust jacket lists titles that were published in 1931. That jacket, now considered a reprint, bears a review of Gertrude Pahlow's Murder in the Morning on the front flap, J. S. Fletcher's The Guarded Room on the rear flap, and a longer review of Hamilton Craigie's The Longhorn Trail on the rear panel (all Clode, 1931). Aside from the iconic cover art and a price of $2.00 (though the reprint states "Net $2.00"), this previously unseen first issue differs in all other aspects: it contains a description of The Snarl of the Beast on the front flap, Richard H. Watkins's Half A Clue on the rear flap (both Clode, 1927), and an advertisement for monthly delivery service of popular detective novels on the rear panel. This 2009 discovery was the subject of an article in the November 2009 issue of Firsts Magazine (pages 12-14) and enthusiastically received by the publishers.
Daly was the most popular writer for Black Mask, the king of the pulp magazines. His violent, fast-paced thrillers earned him a solid place in the genre. The Snarl of the Beast, his second book, introduces private investigator Race Williams, the first hardboiled detective and prototype for Mickey Spillane's Mike Hammer. The description on the flap fortells an "urgent terror stricken appeal [that begins] a series of the strangest and most horrible experiences Williams had ever met."