Friday, October 5, 2012

A new frontier...

Valancourt Books has always focused on British works to the exclusion of American ones, partly because of the longstanding horror of American works inculcated in me by high school and college reading lists filled with the likes of "Thanatopsis," The Red Badge of Courage, Moby-Dick, and the works of Faulkner and Toni Morrison.  But it turns out that if you dig a little bit beneath the surface, there are some great American works awaiting rediscovery.  

We'll inaugurate our new collection of American works with editions of two by George Lippard (1822-1854), close friend of Edgar Allan Poe and author of novels of the Gothic and penny dreadful variety.  Dr. Jonas Prida will edit Lippard's Empire City (1850) and its sequel New York (1853), two works dealing with the Gothic and sensational side of life in mid-19th century New York.  

We're actively looking for other forgotten works of American popular fiction deserving new editions and are seeking proposals, so please contact us if you are a scholar in this area.


  1. I'm not a scholar, though I enjoy the literature of the 18th and 19th centuries. Recently, I've been reading Francis Marion Crawford. Several of his novels may fit the Valancourt bill (e.g. "Greifenstein", "The Witch of Prague", and "Whosoever Shall Offend"). Harold MacGrath, one of the most popular novelists of the early 20th century, deserves a second look as well. If Wikipedia is to be believed, William Henry Pratt took his stage name, Boris Karloff, from the villain of "The Drums of Jeopardy".

  2. Thanks for the suggestions. I didn't know that about Boris Karloff -- interesting! I'll check it out.