Title: Cast The First Stone
Publication Date: 1952
Edition: 1st Edition.
New York. 1952. Coward-McCann. 1st American Edition. Very Good In Slightly Worn Boards.No Dustjacket. 346 pages. hardcover. keywords: Literature Black America Prison African American. inventory # 26894. FROM THE PUBLISHER - Jim looks between the cold-gray bars of his cell seeing the red sun flashing through the naked branches of a distant tree. It is all that he can see of the outside from the small cell he shares with three others who, like himself, are going to spend many years in a single room. A prisoner knows upon his first arrival in prison that he is losing time. Time is the one thing that can never be replaced; the element that can never be compensated for by any little victories lurking in the imagination. He knows, or thinks that he knows, that his prison is a place where normal men of normal appetites and desires are shut off from their natural yearnings as a punishment for attacks on a cruel, uninterested society. He thinks that he will be a normal man shut off from intercourse with normal human beings. It is here that he is wrong. For it will be only after time - something quite different in prison than out - has passed that he slowly awakens to the fact that he is not simply a man locked up. Prison is not only keeping him from contact with his fellow humans; it is making him into something else. A man - if a prisoner can be called a man - who thinks, feels, and loves differently from other men. Jim Munroe is the prisoner in CAST THE FIRST STONE. In prison for twenty years, he tells his own story in this powerful novel - a novel that is big, brutal, and vicious, startlingly revealing, and, best of all perhaps, enormously compassionate. Jim Munroe shows you how a prisoner faces years, years to think, to live, to suffer, to yearn, to strive for what he considers good. Mostly good is outside of the walls, for inside are only the dreams that germinate in the dark corners of his mind - dreams that come to a fulfillment that is even worse than frustration. In 1937 Chester Himes, newly released from a seven-year stretch in the Ohio State Penitentiary for grand larceny, began his first novel, CAST THE FIRST STONE. By turns brutal and lyrical and never less than totally honest, it tells the autobiographical story of young Jimmy Monroe’s passage through the prison system, which tests the limits of his sanity, his capacity for suffering, and his definition of love. Stunningly candid about racism, homosexuality, and prison corruption, the book would take sixteen years and four subsequent revisions before being published in a much-altered form in 1953. Even bowdlerized, it was recognized as a sardonic masterpiece of debasement and transfiguration. This book was later published as YESTERDAY WILL MAKE YOU CRY by Norton in their Old School Books series, presented for the first time the book precisely as Himes intended it to be read, with its raw honesty and startling compassion entirely intact. . Very Good In Slightly Worn Boards.No Dustjacket. Bookseller Inventory # 26894
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