Hard Cover. New York: Grove Press, 1962. First Edition. Very Good / Dust Jacket Included.
First American edition, first printing in first issue dust jacket with $6.00 price on front jacket flap. One of 3,500 copies. Publisher's black cloth and black boards, spine lettered in gilt, black top stain; in the original pictorial yellow and black dust jacket, with red and white lettering. Very good book with a touch of soiling to rear board, edges dusty, a bit of offsetting to endpapers, notes of previous owner (Random House editor Robert Duane Loomis) in pencil to entire front free endpaper and half of pastedown, around eight pages lightly annotated in pencil; about very good unclipped dust jacket with some fading to spine, some small closed tears and small chips to edges and spine ends, a bit of soiling and light spotting. Overall, a sturdy copy with a contemporary editor’s notes. Maynard and Miles A2b. Originally published in 1959 in Paris as part of The Olympia Press' The Traveller's Companion series, Naked Lunch is a series of vignettes, intended to be read independently of one another. The title, as Burroughs explains in his introduction, "means exactly what the words say… a frozen moment when everyone sees what is on the end of every fork." The stories follow drug addict William Lee as he travels to a variety of locations; each story is loosely based on Burroughs' own experiences with drugs in these locations. As John Ciardi commented in his June 27, 1959 review for The Saturday Review, "what Burroughs is writing about is not only the destruction of depraved men by their drug lust, but the destruction of all men by their consuming addictions, whether the addiction be drugs or over righteous propriety, lasciviousness or sixteen-year-old girls."