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Fiction: Military/War

Fiction: Military/War

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The Mad Dictator: A Novel of Adolph Hitler, Bonker, Frances
1 Bonker, Frances The Mad Dictator: A Novel of Adolph Hitler
Boston Chapman & Grimes (c.1950) First Edition Hardcover Very Good in Very Good dj 
[moderately shelfworn, but a solid copy; jacket edgeworn, especially along top edge, a couple of nicks and small tears]. Novel about "The Strange Love Affair of Adolph [sic] Hitler and Eva Braun." (He looks more sad than mad on the jacket cover; was she mean to him, I wonder?) 
Price: 65.00 USD
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Image, Butler, Max
2 Butler, Max Image
New York Vantage Press (c.1959) NO First Edition Hardcover Very Good in Good dj 
(price-clipped) [solid copy, moderate shelfwear, light soiling to page edges, gift inscription (non-authorial) on ffep; jacket worn at edges and extremities, moderate rubbing/soiling]. Presumably-autobiographical war novel, much of which takes place in an Italian beach town. The author, an Oklahoma native described in the jacket blurb as "an artist who served as a rifle platoon leader with the 85th Division in Italy during World War II," writes of a young soldier from "an impoverished family in a southwestern town [who] is uprooted from his drab surroundings and catapulted into a new, strange world of war abroad -- as a rifleman at the front. [Surprise!] Emotional, longing to express himself through some creative form [an artist a-borning!], he comes into contact with Edward Jordon, a fellow soldier who has been a wealthy dilettante [like there's any other kind]. The boy, awed by the older man, seeks to learn all that he can from him. Disillusionment sets in...." But why should I spoil it for you? (And anyway, don't get the idea I'm making fun of this book. In fact, I love vanity-press novels -- and believe that the vanity-press war novel, in particular, is a literary sub-genre just ripe for study and analysis. I don't know if there's ever been a definitive bibliography of these things, but during the 1950s and 1960s they were published by the dozens, if not hundreds, and many -- like this one -- clearly represent a kind of "working out" of their authors' post-war psychological issues.) 
Price: 50.00 USD
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Butternut, Ceder, John
3 Ceder, John Butternut
New York Vantage Press (c.1955) NO First Edition Hardcover Very Good in Fair dj 
[moderately worn, light fraying to cloth at base of spine and bottom corners, a little fading around top front hinge, ffep corner-clipped, bottom corners of a few pages near the end of the book are bent/creased; jacket edgeworn and rubbed/scuffed, spine sunned, several tears and associated creasing along top edge, large chip at top left-hand corner of front panel (just missing the title)]. Scarce vanity-press novel by a WWII veteran, written in "Ozark Mountain speech, a dialect rich in old English words and colorful, striking phrases." It tells the story of "young Tad, whose brother Rafe has fallen in an early battle of World War II, in France, [and who] sets forth to bring the dead soldier's body back to the hills. Tad joins the Army as the easiest way to accomplish his purpose. Thereafter his battle experiences, his relations with his comrades at arms, his escapades when not 'sodjerin',' and his contacts with the natives of North Africa and Italy [where the author himself served, surprise!] are recorded as he evaluates them with the earthy wisdom peculiar to his Ozark heritage." [In other words, the author fancied himself a Ring Lardner of the Ozarks. Curiously, though, the jacket blurb doesn't actually say where he hails from, and in an acknowledgement he credits Vance Randolph's book 'Down in the Holler' as a source for the Ozark dialect. So I guess he maybe wasn't a mountain boy hisself.] 
Price: 40.00 USD
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Ride the White Tiger, Clark, Roger W.
4 Clark, Roger W. Ride the White Tiger
Boston Little, Brown and Company (c.1959) First Edition Hardcover Very Good in Good dj Illustrated by "Kim" [Christopher Kim Clark] 
[a bit of wear at bottom corners, slight bumping to top corners and top of spine, light dust-soiling to top edge; jacket moderately soiled, edgeworn, browned at spine, internal tape-repair to small tears at top of rear panel]. (pen and ink drawings) Somewhat fictionalized Korean War novel, a "powerful, poignant story of a South Korean boy in a time of tremendous stress." It tells the story of the book's illustrator (called "Lee" in the text), who became the adopted son of the author, a Korean War veteran. 
Price: 15.00 USD
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Destination Tokyo, Fisher, Steve
5 Fisher, Steve Destination Tokyo
New York D. Appleton-Century Company (c.1943) First Edition Hardcover Very Good+ 
(light blue cloth, no dust jacket) [solid clean copy, spine cloth a little faded, light bumping to bottom front corner, some wear and a tiny tear in binding at base of spine]. The second World War II novel by the hard-boiled novelist/screenwriter (the first was "Destroyer"), and the basis for the excellent film of the same name, starring Cary Grant as a submarine commander leading an advance scouting mission for Doolittle's bombing raid on Tokyo. [NOTE that this is the relatively uncommon first printing, with the requisite "(1)" at the bottom of the last text page.] 
Price: 75.00 USD
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Road Inland, Franklin, Frieda K.
6 Franklin, Frieda K. Road Inland
New York Thomas Y. Crowell Company (c.1955) NO First Edition Hardcover Very Good+ in Very Good dj Illustrated by (dj) John Balbalis 
[light wear to bottom edge, spine slightly turned, minor bumping to top front corner; jacket scuffed and lightly soiled, fading to spine, a couple of tiny edge-tears]. Novel about "a sensitive young nurse attached to an advanced hospital platoon" -- a MASH unit, essentially -- from D-Day through the end of the war in Europe. Per the jacket blurb, the author had herself been a Red Cross worker during the war, which no doubt informed her portrayal of "the true horror and false glory of war" and the "atmosphere of blood and death." 
Price: 20.00 USD
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Luftgangsters, Hamel, Raymond
7 Hamel, Raymond Luftgangsters
University Park FL Destiny House (c.2002, 1989) 0-9719866-0-6 / 9780971986602 Presumed 1st Hardcover Fine in Near Fine dj 
[nice clean tight copy, no discernible wear; jacket shows mild surface rubbing]. "During the 1930's the Nazi hierarchy became obsessed with sensational reports of the Chicago gangsters, Al Capone and his ilk. So when the Reichsminister of Propaganda wanted to demonize the British and American air forces, he combined the German word Luft (air) with 'gangsters' and thus we were portrayed in the German press. Just as we laughed at the Nazi propaganda tools, Lord Haw Haw and Axis Sally, and enjoyed the music they beamed at us (remember Lili Marlene?) so we reveled in the title of Luftgangster. When America was overtaken by the events of December 7, 1941, two young friends rushed to join the Army Air Corps. This novel is not a memoir; the author's experience is not the story, but it serves to create authentic scenes of the Yanks in Britain, of the Air War over Germany, and the lives of prisoners-of-war and a grand scheme by top Nazis to wangle a separate peace to save their necks." 
Price: 25.00 USD
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A Caste of Heroes, Kenney, Lona B.
8 Kenney, Lona B. A Caste of Heroes
New York Dodd, Mead & Company (c.1966) First Edition Hardcover Very Good+ in Very Good+ dj 
(price-clipped) [solid copy with light shelfwear, minor bumping at a couple of corners; jacket has several small tears and some dog-earing along top edge, general edgewear/rubbing, short tear and associated diagonal creasing at bottom of rear panel]. Uncommon novel set in the paraplegic wards of a large VA hospital -- "the story of a group of young men ... in an alien world where hates are more consuming, dreams more fantastic, and the sexual drive untamed despite severe physical handicap." The author, per her jacket-blurb bio, earned her chops as "an accredited volunteer in the paraplegic wards at the Bronx Veterans Administration Hospital." Although the book was published while the Vietnam War was still ramping up (and the combination of paraplegics and sexual desire is an inescapable reminder of the film COMING HOME), the narrative is actually set during the Korean conflict (one character indicates that he was wounded at Pork Chop Hill three months before); there are also a number of references to MASH units (in Korea) 
Price: 30.00 USD
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Air Mission to Algiers, Litten, Frederic Nelson
9 Litten, Frederic Nelson Air Mission to Algiers
New York Dodd, Mead & Company 1943 First Edition Hardcover Near Fine in Very Good dj Illustrated by (dj) Wm. Fitzpatrick 
(price-clipped) [solid, clean book, with minimal shelfwear, attractive vintage bookplate on front pastedown, tiny bookseller's label at bottom of ffep (Langley Book Shop, Newton Centre, Massachusetts); jacket shows some wear at edges and ends of spine, a few tiny tears and associated creasing at top and bottom edges of rear panel]. Juvenile war/adventure novel involving a Texas A&M freshman (with the great name of Sam Houston Moody) who leaves college to take a job with an American oil company in Iraq. His subsequent adventures involve being taken captive by a Nazi submarine, escaping across the desert with a young Arab companion, and foiling a German plan to incite a revolt among the desert tribes and thereby thwart the landing of American troops in North Africa -- "an up-to-the-minute, fast-moving story, with plenty of flying in it, that every adventure-loving boy will enjoy." 
Price: 40.00 USD
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The Naked and the Dead, Mailer, Norman
10 Mailer, Norman The Naked and the Dead
New York Rinehart and Company, Inc. (c.1948) First Edition Hardcover Near Fine in Good+ dj Illustrated by (dj design) Karov 
[solid clean copy with some light shelfwear to the bottom edge (which appears to have been unobtrusively "touched up" just a teensy bit by some amateur restorationist, although you'd hardly notice unless you turned the book upside down and squinted hard at it, like I did); jacket is edgeworn, with shallow chipping at spine ends and at top of rear panel, light browning to spine and edges of flaps, modest wrinkling to spine and both front and rear panels (not really evident from the exterior), a few little nicks here and there]. Mailer's Important Debut Novel, notable for its (almost) no-holds-barred depiction of the ugliness of war, notable also for the introduction of "fug" and its many variants (including "mother-fuggin") as a substitute for a word that was, even then, pretty well known and widely used, albeit not in polite (or public) discourse. (Mailer's concession to his nervous publishers, it was also immortalized in the apocryphal -- and according to Mailer, completely made up by her press agent -- remark of actress Tallulah Bankhead, allegedly uttered upon being introduced to the author: "You're the young man that doesn't know how to spell 'fuck.'") In the somewhat watered-down 1958 movie version, directed by Raoul Walsh and starring Aldo Ray, Cliff Robertson and Raymond Massey, not only did nobody say "fuck," but (this still being the era of Hollywood's Production Code) they weren't even permitted to utter a single "goddam," an epithet which appears on pretty much every one of the book's 721 pages. (And to save you the trouble of asking: yes, it's the true first edition/first printing, with the "R" colophon on the copyright page, the $4.00 price showing on the unclipped first-issue dust jacket, and "A Word from the Publisher to the Reader" comprising the complete text of the front and rear flaps, over publisher Stanley Rinehart's printed signature.) 
Price: 375.00 USD
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Thy Men Shall Fall [*SIGNED*], Moss, Sidney and Samuel
11 Moss, Sidney and Samuel Thy Men Shall Fall [*SIGNED*]
Chicago Ziff-Davis Publishing Company (c.1948) NO 2nd printing Hardcover Very Good in Very Good dj 
(price-clipped) [solid copy, moderate shelfwear to bottom edge, a little soiling to page edges; jacket shows some edgewear/soiling, minor chipping at spine extremities (no text affected), slightly ragged tear at top right-hand corner of front panel]. INSCRIBED briefly and SIGNED by "Sam" (presumably the co-author) on the ffep. Novel about the travails of a GI during World War II, starting in North Africa, where for a year "an overwhelming nausea consumes him as he is forced to find sleep in muck and filth, food in tins, and love in brothels." From there he goes on to England, and "we follow him from D-Day onward, through France, Holland, and Germany. We see his anguish and hopeless resignation as he turns into an automaton of murder." And so on, in the "war is Hell" vein, with comparisons invited with Stephen Crane and Erich Maria Remarque. Signed by One Author 
Price: 20.00 USD
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Dust Bowl Sailor, Schindler, Gordon
12 Schindler, Gordon Dust Bowl Sailor
Los Angeles Arnold Press (c.1944) First Edition Hardcover Very Good in Fair dj 
[only moderately shelfworn, but with some soiling/foxing on top edge and binding starting to crack in center of book; jacket worn/soiled/discolored, 2-inch split at top front hinge, minor paper loss around top of spine]. Humorous novel concerning "the adventures of Stan Rodinski, Seaman First Class, during his six months training to be a metalsmith" -- in Oklahoma! ("Navy life is pretty much the same everywhere," according to the jacket blurb.) 
Price: 75.00 USD
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The Ludendorff Pirates: A Novel About the Hijacking of the Largest German Battleship of WW II [*SIGNED*], Shaner, John, and Al Ramrus
13 Shaner, John, and Al Ramrus The Ludendorff Pirates: A Novel About the Hijacking of the Largest German Battleship of WW II [*SIGNED*]
Garden City NY Doubleday & Company, Inc. 1978 0-385-11460-5 / 9780385114608 First Edition Hardcover Near Fine in Very Good dj Illustrated by (dj) Norm Walker 
[book is nice and tight, with minimal shelfwear; jacket has a couple of tears along spine, spine browned, some paper loss at spine ends, tiny chip at top of front panel, long closed tear at top of rear panel, faint red ink mark at top right corner of front panel]. INSCRIBED and SIGNED by one author (Shaner) on the ffep. "Twelve men, British special agents chosen for their cool courage, must, in the midst of death-dealing dangers, against tremendous odds, tame this terror of the war-torn seas and direct its terrible power on the Germans themselves. The incredible plan to hijack the super-battleship and use it to destroy the enemy U-boat base off the coast of Denmark is the brainchild of Viscount Beatty, a British mastermind, who on this occasion forsakes his desk to command the mission himself." Signed by One Author 
Price: 12.00 USD
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Bowmanville Break, Shelley, Sidney
14 Shelley, Sidney Bowmanville Break
New York Delacorte Press 1968 1st & 2nd Printing Hardcover Very Good+ in Very Good dj Illustrated by (dj design) Paul Bacon 
[spine a bit turned, light bumping to bottom corners, minor soiling to page edges; jacket moderately edgeworn, a bit faded at spine, with a few small nicks and tears, and some dodo scrawled a phone number on the rear panel]. World War II novel, based on an actual incident in which German prisoners (many of them U-boat commanders) being held in a Canadian POW camp had managed to set up an espionage network, and to plan a major escape. Basis for the 1970 film THE McKENZIE BREAK, directed by Lamont Johnson. 
Price: 20.00 USD
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Born of War [*SIGNED*], Taylor, Thomas
15 Taylor, Thomas Born of War [*SIGNED*]
New York McGraw-Hill Book Company (c.1988) 0-07-063192-1 / 9780070631922 First Edition Hardcover Near Fine in Fine dj Illustrated by (dj design & illustration) Jack Ribik Signed by Author
[slight age-toning to page edges, no other discernible wear; jacket is essentially flawless]. INSCRIBED generically ("With best wishes of the author - ") and SIGNED by the author, in a small neat script at the top of the ffep. "A novel of the adventures of General Orde Wingate," described in the jacket blurb as "the most original and controversial warrior of the twentieth century, [who] fought his bitterest campaigns against the hierarchy of his own British army, which he led to its first victories on two continents during World War II." Signed by Author 
Price: 25.00 USD
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The Tin Armada [*SIGNED*], Whitehand, Satherley [pseud. for David Satherley and James Whitehand]
16 Whitehand, Satherley [pseud. for David Satherley and James Whitehand] The Tin Armada [*SIGNED*]
London Cassell & Company, Ltd. 1957 NO Second Edition Hardcover Near Fine in Very Good dj 
[good solid copy, mild shelfwear; jacket rubbed at edges, a few small tears/chips, minor paper loss at base of spine]. INSCRIBED and SIGNED by one author (Whitehand) on the title page. "For Peter Neal, whose story this novel tells, the Dieppe raid was the culmination of years of training as an A.B. at the experimental stations of Combined Ops. There was nothing romantic about his service life; the stomach-wracking tank-landing craft was designed for one job only -- to land tanks -- and the tin Armada of Dieppe at the invasion beaches was bloody rather than glamorous." Signed by One Author 
Price: 40.00 USD
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Come Down the Hill, Williams, George H., Jr.
17 Williams, George H., Jr. Come Down the Hill
New York Vantage Press (c.1964) First Edition Hardcover Near Fine in Good dj 
[minor shelfwear, light bumping to spine ends; jacket heavily worn at edges, paper loss at several corners and spine ends]. Scarce vanity-press novel, which appears to be essentially a fictionalized account of the battle for "Heartbreak Ridge," one of the most hard-fought engagements of the Korean War. (The author was commander of the 1st Battallion, 23rd Infantry, during that action, which took place over several weeks during September and October 1951.) 
Price: 100.00 USD
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