Boston: Roberts Brothers, 1887. Original bright red cloth decorated in brown.
First Edition of Hearn's second book -- but his first book of "original" work (since his earliest, STRAY LEAVES FROM STRAY LITERATURE (1884), was a collection of folk tales he had "reconstructed"). This volume presents as a similar volume -- half a dozen supernatural tales from the Far East -- but is in fact from Hearn's own imagination. Written while a resident of New Orleans, SOME CHINESE GHOSTS is "a series of brilliantly polished but static sketches" [K&H] that had first appeared in Harper's Magazine. After this book was published, Hearn accused Roberts Bros. of robbing him of royalties, and the book (save a few hundred copies already sold) and printing plates were destroyed. It was not until 1890 that Hearn left for Japan, where he would settle, become a Japanese citizen, marry, and ultimately be appointed chair of English Literature at the Imperial University of Tokyo.~This copy is in bright red cloth, one of several colors used without priority; the endpapers are decorated with a pattern of leaves and flowers in olive brown, again one of several used without priority. It is in remarkably fine, bright condition -- essentially as new. Blanck 7916; Bleiler 787. Housed in a cloth slipcase, this copy bears the small leather "Blairhame" bookplate of the noted collector Mrs. J. Insley Blair. Item #13700