ADAMS (RICHARD) Watership Down, FIRST EDITION, AUTHOR'S PRESENTATION COPY INSCRIBED To Reg. Sones, 1972; Proof copy; 3 other signed works, 5 letters/postcards; 2 photographs (small collection)
Lot 137
ADAMS (RICHARD) Watership Down, FIRST EDITION, AUTHOR'S PRESENTATION COPY INSCRIBED To Reg. Sones, 1972; Proof copy; 3 other signed works, 5 letters/postcards; 2 photographs (small collection)
Sold for £3,250 (US$ 5,238) inc. premium

Lot Details
ADAMS (RICHARD)
Watership Down, FIRST EDITION, AUTHOR'S PRESENTATION COPY, inscribed "To Reg. Sones with gratitude and warm feelings Richard Adams, November 1972" on the front free endpaper, folding map printed in colours, publisher's cloth, dust-jacket (unclipped), Rex Collings, 1972; Watership Down, UNCORRECTED PROOF COPY, with extensive ink annotations throughout, marked on upper cover "R.D. Sones' copy", publisher's printed wrappers, [1972]; Shardik, FIRST EDITION, AUTHOR'S PRESENTATION COPY, inscribed "To Reg. Sones with gratitude Richard Adams, November 1974" on the title, short tear to dust-jacket (unclipped), Allen Lane, 1974; The Plague Dogs, FIRST EDITION, AUTHOR'S PRESENTATION COPY, inscribed "To Reg. with friendship and gratitude, Richard" on the front free endpaper, dust-jacket, Allen Lane, 1977; The Girl in a Swing, "Charnwood Large Type" edition, AUTHOR'S PRESENTATION COPY, inscribed "To Reg. with sincere friendship Richard" on title, and additonal author's signature on half-title, publisher's pictorial boards, Leicester, Charnwood, 1982, 8vo; together with 3 autograph letters, one typed letter, a postcard (together 8 pages, all signed and mentioning his books), and 2 photographs of Adams, one of him amongst a group of chess players which also includes Reg Sones (small collection)

Footnotes

  • A FINE PRESENTATION COPY OF 'WATERSHIP DOWN' TO ONE OF ITS EDITORS, TOGETHER WITH AN EARLY UNCORRECTED PROOF.

    Reg Sones, to whom the books are inscribed, was a close friend of the author. They worked in the Civil Service together, playing chess together in their lunchbreaks. In the "Acknowledgements" of both Watership Down and Shardik he is thanked as a friend "who read the book before publication and made valuable suggestions". The early proof "uncorrected and not for publication" has extensive corrections in ink, many grammatical and spelling issues, but some more significant. For example on page 348 the line "his mother's blood had prejudiced the Council against him" has been struck through and marked "??" in the proof, and in the published version the line has been altered to "Queen Dripslobber her very self has expressed her gracious wish that you should meet her". The accompanying letters discuss chess but also the books: in 1976 "Plague Dogs is all but finished and I hope to get a first draft to you by early June. It is an odd book, half anthropomorphic fantasy and half social satire... I hope the chess team did well!"; in 1979 he writes "I don't really think an awful lot of the film "Watering Down" do you? But it's raking in the dough... I don't play in the Chess Club [on the Isle of Man], though. Too busy writing...", and in 1983, after a lengthy description of a computerised chess game, he mentions that he had begun The Girl in the Swing after seeing "Oh" Calcutta", by which "I was absolutely disgusted - it was so ugly", and thought he would write his own "Explicit".

    Provenance: Reginald Sones; by descent to the present owner.
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