Odd John. W. Olaf Stapledon.
(Stapledon, W. Olaf)

Odd John.

London: Methuen, (1935). First edition, first issue, with ads at rear dated “535” (i.e., May, 1935); later issues bear an August date. One of 3096 copies printed. A novel that explores the idea of a Nietzschean “Super-man” with great mental prowess living among ordinary human beings. John Wainwright, the titular character, winds up feeling oppressed, and, together with fellow “Homines Superiores” he locates in mental asylums and other far-flung places, flees to an island where they form a colony. Eventually, the activities of the colonists are looked upon by the rest of humanity with suspicion, and when the island is invaded, the colonists deliberately destroy it. The theme of misunderstood intellectualism was a recurring one for Stapledon, whose first book dealt with similar ethics. Stapledon was inducted into the Science Fiction and Fantasy Hall of Fame in 2014. Light foxing along edge of text block, some shelfwear to bottom edge, faint toning to spine, Dublin bookseller’s label on lower front paste-down. Overall, a near fine copy in light blue cloth with dark blue lettering, in the extremely rare first issue dust wrapper, with the 7s/6d price intact on the lower front flap. Dust wrapper shows light soiling to back panel and a few small chips at the top of the spine and upper corners, but is quite bright, showing almost none of the fading to the pink spine color to which this title is subject. Housed in a white cloth folding case. Item #27748

(Barron 2-120).

Price: $3,500.00

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