LARBAUD, Valery. Enfantines. Paris, N.R.F., 1918.
4to [213 x 162 mm] of 221 pp. and (3) ll. Jansenist almond green morocco, flat spine with gilt title, edge to edge doublures and beige box calf, double doublures of kromekote in grey, ivory and beige shades, gilt over untrimmed edges, wrappers and spine bound in, beige box calf folder with strips made of the same kromekote, doubled with a fine natural leather, case identically lined. M. de Bellefroid.
First edition of this first short stories collection, very admired by Marcel Proust, printed in 70 numbered copies.
Precious leading copy, one of the 64 (n°3) reimposed on Lafuma de Voiron filigrane n.r.f., the only large paper.
In these eight short stories each of them dedicated to one of Larbaud’s friend, this one, giving himself up entirely to the bewitchment of a still lively childhood, expressed with a great lucidity of style the melancholy of the evocations of the past and the feeling of the irreversible passing of time.
This collection “encloses eight short stories, in which the author not only finds again the enchanted atmosphere where childhood is immersed, but with the precision of the details and the appropriateness of the tone, brings back his reader. Because he especially emphasizes some facts that ‘grown ups’ consider as insignificant, but which are very important for the child; it is as a child that he evokes events either really lived, or imaginary, with still the same intensity and the same presence […] In this book, Valéry Larbaud gives himself up entirely to the bewitchment of a still present and lively childhood and particularly to the charm of the memory of childlike love; if he succeeds in expressing this present life to the reader, it is with the lucidity and the freshness of his style and with the striking accuracy with which he finds again the paths of the past and childhood.” (Dictionnaire des Œuvres, II, 593).
Superb copy preserved in a very elegant tripled binding by Mr. de Bellefroid with particularly refined shades.