New York: Harcourt, Brace and Company, 1921. 1st US Edition. Small octavo, publisher's black cloth, printed paper spine label, original printed dust jacket.
"The mind receives a myriad of impressions—trivial, fantastic, evanescent, or engraved with the sharpness of steel. From all sides they come, an incessant shower of innumerable atoms; and as they fall, they shape themselves into the life of Monday or Tuesday" (from Woolf’s 1919 essay "Modern Fiction"). First US edition of Virginia Woolf’s early short story collection. Comprising eight impressionistic pieces, including "Kew Gardens," "The Mark on the Wall," the title-story, and the exceedingly experimental "Blue and Green," among others, the book had a major impact on the public perception of Woolf and her work. Notably, she was hesitant to publish the collection for fear of negative critical reception, but her husband Leonard and sister Vanessa Bell encouraged her to follow through (on March 6, 1921 she wrote in her diary: "Nessa approves of Monday or Tuesday mercifully; & thus somewhat redeems it in my eyes"). While she had already published two novels—The Voyage Out (1915) and Night and Day (1919)—Woolf at the time was predominantly known as a critic and essayist, and had just begun to transition from a more traditional style to the experimental techniques that would become her hallmark. The book, an interiorization and literary reflection of Woolf’s narrative concerns addressed in her essay "Modern Fiction," was the first major publication put out by the Woolfs' Hogarth Press (issued earlier the same year). Her newfound style was praised in reviews, giving Woolf the confidence to continue writing the experimental prose that would lead to her breakout novels, Mrs. Dalloway (1925) and To the Lighthouse (1927). One of 1500 unnumbered copies. One of two variants, this copy is bound in publisher's black cloth, with 1921 to title- and copyright pages. Kirkpatrick A5b. Upper hinge tender; dust jacket clipped at all four corners, with restoration to spine panel and edges, and some toning overall. Very good. Item #5203