Heritage Press: Billy Budd and Benito Cereno by Herman Melville (1965)

October 17, 2011 Comments Off on Heritage Press: Billy Budd and Benito Cereno by Herman Melville (1965)

Billy Budd and Benito Cereno by Herman Melville (1965)
Sandglass Number Unknown
Artwork: Paintings by Robert Shore
Introduced by Maxwell Geismar
Reprint of LEC #367/33rd Series V. 5 in 1965

Click images to see a larger view.

Front Binding – For this printing of Herman Melville’s legendary short stories of the sea, the Heritage Press utilized the two-cloth method of binding, in this case black and white, with the titles the reverse on the spine (see below).  Effective choice, but I don’t know who came up with it or any other publishing info due to a lack of Sandglass.

Melville would see four of his works produced by the Limited Editions Club – Typee to begin in 1935, with Miguel Covarrubias doing the artistic honors, followed by the 2-volume Moby Dick in 1943, featuring Boardman Robinson’s talent.  Helen Macy would pick up the Melville bug for two more books during her tenure, with Omoo arriving in 1961 with art from Reynolds Stone, and then this one, done in 1965.  Speaking from my experience, Melville is one of the trickier authors to track down Macy books for – I’ve only seen this and Moby Dick once, respectively.

Robert Shore started his LEC career when Melville concluded his – Helen and Jonathan Macy and Cardevon would require his services for another four LEC books, including Joseph Conrad’s Heart of Darkness in 1969, From the Earth to the Moon and Around the Moon by Jules Verne in 1970 (a lovely book), a collection of Conrad’s stories Youth, Typhoon and The End of the Tether in 1972, and his last, another Conrad, An Outcast from the Islands, in 1975.  All but the latter have Heritage reprints it would seem.  Shore’s style is pretty distinctive, and it’s one I do enjoy.

Slipcase – Bold red against the black and white.

Spine

Title Page – Rather barren, isn’t it?  Shore’s work was saved for the interior.  Maxwell Geismar offers his thoughts as an introduction.

Billy Budd Introduction – Both stories have a nice page introducing them like this example from Billy Budd.

Page 8 – Shore has a knack for seascapes – may be why he did so many for the LEC!  Most are two-page spreads, but there’s a couple of single page paintings, as well.

Page 32

Page 156

Personal Notes – I purchased this in Flagstaff, Arizona for $15 or so.  I failed to realize it lacked a Sandglass – probably because this was my second choice, but my friend bought the first after I showed it to her. XD  Ah well.  Still a nice book.

If you have a LEC of this book or a Sandglass for the Heritage New York printing, please drop me a line here or through the comments at my thread about this blog at the George Macy Devotees @ LibraryThing!  I could use extra insights into this book.  Thanks!

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