The Last Enemy by Richard Hillary 1st / 1st 1942
First edition and first print published by Macmillan in 1942. This first print copy is in near fine condition. The notoriously fragile wrapper is stunning with very little if any loss. The top and bottom of the spine has very minor rubbing and the spine has a hint of fade. The wrapper retains its colour to the panels and the back shows up in a brilliant clear and clean white with no marks to speak of. The book has no previous owners ink. There is a decorative book plate to the front free end paper and there is a smattering of light foxing marks to the top text block and to the top of the side text block. Overall the condition of this scarce book is near fine and highly collectable thus.
The Last Enemy, is a WW2 memoir written by the Anglo-Australian fighter pilot Richard Hillary. It details his experiences as a Spitfire pilot during the Battle of Britain in 1940, during which he was shot down in action, sustaining severe injuries. He wrote the book in New York City whilst still recuperating from his wounds during a propaganda publicity tour in the United States in 1941 organized by the British Government to attempt to raise support for the Allied cause and the U.S.A.'s entry into the war. However, he was not allowed to appear in public personally due to concerns that his severely facially scarred appearance might prove counter-productive, and his work was confined to newspaper interviews and radio broadcasts. He died in 1943 in a training accident in his Spitfire only 6 months after this book was published. The title of the book is taken from Corinthians 15:26, "The last enemy that shall be destroyed is death".