[The Final Issue of] The Lorraine Cross

France: 79th Division, May 8, 1919.

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Fine. James M. Cain's own copy of the final issue of The Lorraine Cross, the newspaper of the 79th Division of the U.S. Army of the Allied Expeditionary Force in World War I. The Lorraine Cross was founded, edited, and largely written by James M. Cain, in part as a means of avoiding combat. This is the final issue of the paper, issued as the Division was returning to the U.S. The paper is quite browned, but otherwise fine. When Cain returned, he had this issue and some associated material matted and framed in period arts-and-crafts style oak frames, and hung in his own house. The issue prints a letter of appreciation from the Division's commanding General Joseph E. Kuhn to Cain, thanking him and the paper's staff for their efforts on the paper. Also with: the original typed letter Signed from Kuhn to Cain (also framed by Cain). The letter is slightly darkened at the extremities from "matte-burn" but is otherwise fine. Also accompanying the letter and the newspaper is an original broadside: "Have You Subscribed to The Lorraine Cross?" printed in red and two shades of blue with a comic drawing of doughboys reading the paper. This too has been framed by Cain in a compatible frame, and is in fine condition. Issues of The Lorraine Cross are impossible to find. To find Cain's own copy of the last and most important issue, along with the letter and broadside, is about as much as one could wish for of Cain's "juvenilia." For the three framed items.

Item #60123

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[The Final Issue of] The Lorraine Cross. James M. CAIN.

James M. Cain
birth name: James M. Cain
born: 7/1/1892
died: 10/27/1977
nationality: USA

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Biography

Novelist whose violent, sexually obsessed, and relentlessly paced melodramas epitomized the hard-boiled fiction that flourished in the U.S. in the 1930s and '40s. Three of his novels - The Postman Always Rings Twice (1934), Double Indemnity (1936), and Mildred Pierce (1941) - were also made into classics of the American screen. - Merriam-Webster's Encyclopedia of Literaturemore

Collecting tips:

Cain's The Postman Always Rings Twice (1934), is probably his most sought after title. Jacketed copies can range widely in price, from the low thousands, up to an imposing figure if in truly beautiful condition. His novel Serenade (1937), comes in two color variant jackets - primarily either purple (in our experience the scarcer) or red. As the basis for a very good movie, Mildred Pierce (1941), ("everything you ever wanted to know about chicken" according to our colleague Peter Stern) has of late attracted some serious collecting interest. Cain's first book, Our Government (1930), comes in two variant jackets - one with a large dollar sign (generally adjudged the first issued) and the other illustrated with the portrait of a bloated plutocrat. Curiously, no one seems to care much about this book, although I think it's a mistake - it is scarce, particularly in nice condition.

Email us to request a printed copy of our catalog of James M. Cain Rare Books and First Editions (or download it via the link as a 1.59 MB pdf file). We also offer a comprehensive James M. Cain Bibliography and Price Guide.more