A Fable by William Faulkner 1st / 1st 1954
New York: Random House (1954). True first edition in near fine condition. The wrapper that is often prone to creasing and loss, is in this case in remarkably complete order. There are no tears or chips. There is minor wear to the corner tips and to the top spine end. The spine is a shade sunned. The book itself is in lovely condition with no foxing or spotting. There is no previous owner’s ink. Overall a highly collectible near fine copy.
The book takes place in France during World War I and stretches through the course of one week in 1918. Corporal Stephan, orders 3,000 troops to disobey orders to attack in the brutally repetitive trench warfare. In return, the Germans do not attack, and the war stops when soldiers realize that it takes two sides to fight a war. The Generalissimo, who represents leaders who use war to gain power, invites his German counterpart to discuss how to restart the war. He then arrests and executes Stefan. Before Stefan’s execution, the Generalissimo tries to convince the corporal that war can never be stopped because it is the essence of human nature. Faulker won the Pullitzer Prize for this novel.