Lovelace, Delos W. King Kong. New York: Grosset & Dunlap, 1932. 8vo. Rebound in 1/4 green leather and cloth boards, with raised bands, gilt stamps, and gilt titles to spine. New matching archival slipcase.
Presented is a first edition of Delos W. Lovelace’s adaptation of King Kong. This printing was published by Grosset & Dunlap, in New York, in December of 1932, just months before the March 1933 film premiere of King Kong. The book has been beautifully rebound in handsome ¼ green leather and cloth boards, with raised bands and gilt stamps and tiles to the spine, and a matching green archival slipcase.
RKO producer Merian Cooper and writer Edgar Wallace originally conceived of the story about a remote island inhabited by a huge silverback gorilla, among other creatures. After Wallace’s untimely death, the thrilling screenplay was finished by James A. Creelman and Ruth Rose. Just as the RKO film of King Kong was finishing production, Cooper asked his friend Delos Lovelace to adapt the film's screenplay into a novelization. On the novel’s cover, Lovelace’s name was overshadowed by the phrase, “conceived by Edgar Wallace and Merian C. Cooper.” The Grosset & Dunlap book was published later that month, on December 27, and served as part of the film’s advance marketing campaign. The book would go on to see numerous reprints, furthering King Kong's status as a cultural phenomenon.
Alexander Grosset and George T. Dunlap first met while working for the American Publishers Corporation. In 1898, Grosset & Dunlap formed a new partnership with the goal to shift the focus of the publishing industry from expensive books for the few to inexpensive books for the masses. In order to avoid paying royalties and other publishing fees, Grosset & Dunlap started reprinting books that were already in print. With these profits, the partners purchased paperbound books in bulk to rebind them in cloth and resell. As the company grew, Grosset & Dunlap were able to purchase reprint rights from publishers before publication, including reprint rights from Edward Stratemeyer for the Hardy Boys and Nancy Drew. Though it was primarily a reprint house, some notable first editions were published by Grosset & Dunlap, including King Kong, the Nancy Drew and Hardy Boys series, and Fran Striker’s Lone Ranger series.
Very good condition. 8vo. Rebound in 1/4 green leather and cloth boards, with raised bands, gilt stamps, and gilt titles to spine. New matching archival slipcase. Interior pages are healthy with only light toning. Light wear to the half title page.
Book Dimensions: 8 1/4"H x 5 3/4"W x 1 5/8"D. Slipcase Dimensions: 8 3/4"H x 6"W x 2"D.