A Plea For Help – The Case Of The Constant Suicides by John Dickson Carr

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Well there I was strolling around Amsterdam and I spotted this in a shop window. As this is much nicer than my existing copy and was only five euros, there wasn’t much delay in buying it. But…

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In the copyright info, it dates the book to 1941, the year of the book’s release. So, people who are better informed than me, is this the US paperback first edition? Or is that front page lying to me? Thanks in advance for any help.

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18 comments

  1. The copyright date and publication date are not necessarily one and the same. In this case, I think this date is good for copyright only. The publication of the paperback edition would have come at a later date, most likely at least a year, i.e., 1942 or later.

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    • True. And a little more research has led me to discover that Berkley Publishing Corp was only called that from 1955… Still, it’s a lovely edition, complete with irrelevant swooning fennel fatale.

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  2. Amazon US and AbeBooks here in the US show that edition with that cover as being published in 1957. Illustration by Robert Maguire.

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  3. The cover shown by you is of 1957 edition published by Berkley Books.The first US edition is Harper 1941 but it has a different cover.

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    • Filing that pun away for the great unwritten novel. The auto-spelling-corrector pulls up some gems on occasion. It constantly tries to change the name of one of my students to something verrry (or ferret or freestyle) embarrassing – I think I’ve caught it every time.

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  4. Thanks to everyone for sorting this out – despite it not being a first edition – which I did doubt – it’s still a lovely book and does mean that my school library will get my tatty old version…

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  5. Just checked and my green Penguin is in much better shape than I thought it was – it’s my copy of And So To Murder that’s falling apart – and predates this one by two years. Might have to keep them both. It’s the dilemma of the first edition of The Adventures of Ellery Queen without dustjacket vs the third edition with dust-jacket all over again… (I kept them both too)

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  6. In a move from IL. to Alabama, I lost my John Dickson Carr’s Novels – all these books had a skull on the biding…..has anyone see some like this??
    Corkey.

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