Soft Cover. New York: Grove Press, 1958. First Edition. Very Good.
First edition, Evergreen issue, first state, (with "by," the Evergreen device, and "an Evergreen original" printed in white.) Publisher's pictorial paper wrappers designed by Roy Kuhlman, with an illustration of a bridge to the front wrapper in black and two different shades of green, lettered in white. Near fine, with light rubbing to spine ends and edges, and some very light scratching to front wrapper. Overall, an attractive copy. The Subterraneans is a memoir based on Kerouac's relationship with Beat poet Alene Lee, with whom he had a brief romantic affair. Interestingly, although Lee was a native of Staten Island and she met Kerouac in Greenwich Village, the fictional lovers, Leo Percepied and Mardou Fox, fall in love in San Francisco amidst the city's jazz clubs and the "subterranean" people who frequent them. The Subterraneans' focus on jazz and jazz culture is especially well paired with the author's improvisational "spontaneous prose" writing style. Indeed, as David Dempsey writes in his 1958 New York Times Review, "Kerouac is a form of experience, tape-recorded and played back to the self, to the coterie world from whence the experience came." Item #JK053