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1 Kosinski, Jerzy The Painted Bird
Boston Houghton Mifflin 1965 First Edition Cloth 
Fine in a Near Fine dustjacket. Bound in full brown cloth. The spine is stamped in black. Octavo. Brown endpapers. 272pps. First printing stated. The closed page-edges are faintly yellowed, otherwise clean, bright, square, and soundly bound. All tips are sharp. The textblock is immaculate; no apparent reading wear and no previous ownership markings. The dustjacket, glossy in a mylar sleeve, has a closed tear at the top of the front flap, otherwise essentially flawless; the original price (4.95) is intact. An excellent, collector's-quality copy -- first state, with the top printing line of page 271 erroneously printed, as well, at the top of page 270.

"In the first weeks of World War II, the protagonist of this book, a dark-haired, black-eyed boy of six, was abandoned by his parents in a remote village in Eastern Europe, as his one chance of surviving the German occupation. For the next six years he managed barely to keep alive in a nightmare world of brutality and superstition, literally hounded from village to village by primitive peasants who knew the penalty for harboring a Jew or a Gypsy. To a few he meant free labor, in return for shelter they worked him in their fields and bent him to their vicious wills. The world of 'The Painted Bird' is grim and violent, a world of spells and strange perversions and the evil eye. The child's supreme instinct for survival eventually made him hard and cunning himself. Through this world move Lekh, the birdcatcher, who eased his own sorrow by painting his beloved birds and releasing them to be killed by their own kind; Garbos, determined to destroy the boy, but afraid to do it with his own hands; Makar, his daughter Ewka and son Quail, who drew the boy into the cloak of their own perversions; Rainbow, whose unbridled lusts caused unnatural death; Mitka the Cuckoo, a Soviet sharpshooter who avenged singlehanded the death of his comrades in a way he saw fit; the Silent One, who indicted, judged and executed without a word; and the fugitive boy himself, who became a part of the elemental world in which he existed, who emerged from it knowing that part of him would be forever in it."

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Price: 500.00 USD
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