New York: Alfred A. Knopf, 1956. 1st US Edition. Octavo, publisher's teal cloth over slate paper-covered boards, spine stamped in silver and gilt, upper board gilt, original illustrated dust jacket.
First US edition of Cuban author, musicologist, and self-described "marvelous realist" Alejo Carpentier’s metaphysical masterpiece. The first of his books to appear in English, the Faustian narrative revolves around a disillusioned New York intellectual as he contends with his Latino heritage while on an anthropological expedition in South America. Written while Carpentier was living in exile in Caracas, the novel was the result of the author’s initial attempt (and apparent failure) to write a straightforward, autobiographical account of his own journeys on the Amazon while exploring his own cultural identity. Translated by Harriet de Onís, one, one of the most influential translators of Latin American literature; dust jacket designed by Paul Rand, American Modernist pioneer and leading figure in 20th century graphic design. Light rubbing and sunning to board edges; price-clipped dust jacket mildly toned, with a few small closed tears. Very good. Item #3268