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Tales of the Wilderness by Boris Pilniak (Pilnyak) first UK edition 1924

Tales of the Wilderness by Boris Pilniak (Pilnyak) first UK edition 1924


London: George Routledge (1924). A first UK edition. 8vo., original brown cloth boards, gilt lettering to the spine, with the original dust jacket; pp. [xxxi] 223; A very good or better copy. The jacket hasn't been price clipped and has very little if any loss. The top of the spine has some minor wear and rubbing. The spine has browned. The upper text block has foxing marks and so does the first four or five preliminary pages. An excellent copy and scarce.


Boris Pilniak's (Pilnyak) first book to be published in the English language. It is a collection of his earliest writing. This book was published only two years after his first novel was written in Russia, the censored 'The Naked Year' about the Russian Civil War. This would be a continued theme in the 1920's, with many of Pilniak's works being censored or causing a scandal in Russia.


It would not end well for Pilniak as he was falsely accused of plotting to kill Stalin and in 1938 he was executed. It was perhaps his closeness to Pasternak, western writers, along with previous scandals and writing that sealed his fate. 


This collection of short stories were written by Pilniak, in the main, before his first novel was published. 'Death' and 'Over the Ravine' were written in 1918 with the remaining between 1920 and 1922. The book is very scarce to find in any condition and particularly so, with its jacket and in this condition. 

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