New York: Harper and Row, 1971. 1st Edition Thus. Octavo, publisher’s red cloth over dark gray paper-covered boards, red endpapers, spine stamped in back, upper board blind stamped, original illustrated dust jacket.
“One realized all sorts of things. The value of an illusion, for instance, and that the shadow can be more important than the substance. All sorts of things.” First Harper & Row edition of Jean Rhys’s first novel, published after Wide Sargasso Sea (1966) brought her back into the public eye from a long absence. Originally published by Simon and Schuster in 1929 following a collection of short stories she wrote with Ford Madox Ford, the narrative centers on Marya Zelli, who is left alone in Paris after her husband is sentenced to a year in prison. Subsequently, she is sexually and psychologically manipulated by a wealthy married couple, the Heidlers. A roman à clef, the story is based on Rhys’s time living with Ford and his partner Stella Bowen, and her ensuing affair with Ford. Later, Rhys admitted to her editor Diana Athill that she wrote Quartet, “because she was very angry with Ford and wanted to pay him back.” James Ivory adapted the book into a film in 1981 starring Isabelle Adjani alongside Maggie Smith, Alan Bates, and Anthony Higgins. Light wear to spine ends; unclipped dust jacket with light waviness and wear. Near fine. Item #6811