Faber and Faber has been publishing fabulous books since the days of King George V. There was only one Faber – Geoffrey, who took on the firm from its original incarnation as Faber and Gwyer. The second Faber is there purely for the sake of appearance.
Faber and Faber will always be associated with the poet T.S. Eliot, who quit life as a bean counter in Lloyds Bank to work for the publisher. Faberís first Eliot book was Poems 1909-1925. In some respects, Eliotís behind-the-scenes work as a publisher is just as important as his own writing. Aside from the author of Old Possumís Book of Practical Cats, Faber and Faber were (and always has been) deeply committed to poetry and its stable of poets during the Eliot era included Ezra Pound, W. H. Auden, Stephen Spender and Walter de la Mare.
The companyís first real bestseller came in 1930 with Siegfried Sassoon's Memoirs of a Fox-Hunting Man, which had already been published anonymously by Faber and Gwyer. The Faber and Faber edition was illustrated by William Nicholson and was reprinted many times.
Geoffrey Faber and Eliot comprised a sort of literary brain-trust that scooped up some of the finest writers of the day. The likes of James Joyce, Alison Uttley, William Golding, Lawrence Durrell, Ted Hughes, Robert Graves, Sylvia Plath, Brian Aldiss, Philip Larkin, Seamus Heaney, P. D. James, Tom Stoppard and John Osborne ensured Faber remained a publishing powerhouse for decade after decade.
Faber and Faber is still an independent publisher today and its legacy is genuine – as much of its early work remains in print and no publisher has come close to matching its commitment to poetry. It has published 12 Nobel Laureates and six Booker Prize-winners so you could say its trophy cabinet is full to bursting. Paul Auster, Kazuo Ishiguro, Peter Carey and Orhan Pamuk are just four of its current cosmopolitan crop of well regarded writers.
This diverse selection of books published by Faber and Faber includes many first editions.