The Beach of Falesa

By: Stevenson, Robert Louis; Furnas, J.C. (Introduction)

Price: $40.00

Quantity: 1 available

Book Condition: Very Good

Limited edition, #1059 of 1500 copies, signed by the artist. Lacks slipcase. Abrasion to base of front board, otherwise an excellent copy. 1956 Large Hardcover. xv, [3], 113, [5] pp. Numerous illustrations by Millard Sheets throughout, with an introduction by J.C. Furnas. The Beach of Falesa is a short story by Scottish author Robert Louis Stevenson. It was first published in the Illustrated London News in 1892, and later published in book form in the short-story collection Island Nights' Entertainments (1893). It was written after Stevenson moved to the South Seas island of Samoa just a few years before he died there. Stevenson saw The Beach of Falesá as the ground-breaking work in his turn away from romanticism to realism. Stevenson wrote to his friend Sidney Colvin: It is the first realistic South Seas story; I mean with real South Sea character and details of life. Everybody else that has tried, that I have seen, got carried away by the romance, and ended in a kind of sugar candy sham epic, and the whole effect was lost - there was not etching, no human grin, consequently no conviction. Now I have got the smell and look of the thing a good deal. You will know more about the South Seas after you have read my little tale than if you had read a library. In an unusual change for Stevenson, but in-line with realism, the plot of the story is less important, rather the realistic portrayal of the manners of various social classes in island society is foregrounded; it is essentially a novel of manners. As Stevenson says to Colvin in a letter, The Beach of Falesá is well fed with facts and true to the manners' of the society it depicts. Other than the island itself which is fictional, it contains the names of real people, real ships and real buildings which Stevenson was familiar with from his personal travels in the South Seas. The Beach of Falesá, along with his two other South Seas tales in Island Nights' Entertainments, were generally poorly received by his peers in London. Stevenson was known and loved for his historical romances such as Treasure Island, Kidnapped and The Master of Ballantrae and so his shift to realism was not widely applauded. Oscar Wilde complained I see that romantic surroundings [Samoa] are the worst surroundings possible for a romantic writer. In Gower Street Stevenson could have written a new Trois Mousquetaires. In Samoa he wrote letters to The Times about Germans. Edmund Gosse wrote The fact seems to be that it is very nice to live in Samoa, but not healthy to write there. Modern scholarship and the reflection of time has been more kind to Stevenson's late works. What his critics could not see or know at the time is that modernism was just around the corner and Stevenson had begun to experiment with early forms, along with a critique of the European colonial venture (post-colonialism), something most people in the 1890s were not interested in hearing, but within a decade or so, such as with Joseph Conrad, would become fashionable.

Title: The Beach of Falesa

Author: Stevenson, Robert Louis; Furnas, J.C. (Introduction)

Illustrator: Sheets, Millard

Categories: British & Irish, Signed,

Edition: Limited Edition

Publisher: The Limited Editions Club / The Ward Ritchie Press: 1956

Binding: Large Hardcover

Book Condition: Very Good

Jacket Condition: No Jacket

Inscription: Signed by illustrator

Seller ID: 2265332