Grey, Zane: The Man of the Forest
(researched by Nikole Krause)

Assignment 1: Bibliographical Description

1 First edition publication information (publisher, place, date, etc.)

Harper & Brothers Publishers, New York, London, 1920.

2 First edition published in cloth, paper, or both? If both, simultaneous or staggered?


3 JPEG image of cover art from first edition, if available

4 Pagination

383 pages

5 Edited or Introduced? If so, by whom?


6 Illustrated? If so, by whom?

Yes, by Frank Tenney Johnson.

7 JPEG image of sample illustration, if available

8 General physical appearance of book (Is the physical presentation of the text attractive? Is the typography readable? Is the book well printed?)

The general appearance of the book is fairly attractive. The cover is dark green with black and lighter green used for the cover art and text. There are several glossy black and white illustrations and the text is very clear.

9 JPEG image of sample chapter page, if available

10 Paper (Assess the original quality of the paper used for the book. Is the paper in the copy or copies you examined holding up physically over time?)

The paper is holding up exceptionally well after several decades in a public library. There is almost no yellowing and the pages are very clean with little sign of wear.

11 Description of binding(s)

The binding hasn't held up quite as well as the paper. The spine was both sewn and glued together. Though the glue is now mostly gone, the spine is still mostly attached. The problem is in the hinges, which are really loose and the webbing shows through in spots.

12 Transcription of title page

Man of the Forest
   A Novel by
Author of "The Border Legion" "Desert Gold"
"Wildfire" "The Desert of Wheat" etc.
Illustrations by 
 [Publisher's symbol]
Harper & Brothers Publishers
  New York and London

13 JPEG image of title page, if available

14 Manuscript Holdings

Zane Grey Inc. Los Angeles, CA.

15 Other (typograpical information from title page, etc.)

Assignment 2: Publication and Performance History

1 Did the original publisher issue the book in more than one edition? If so, briefly describe distinguishing features of each (illustrations, cover art, typography, etc.); if not, enter N/A


2 JPEG image of cover art from one subsequent edition, if available

3 JPEG image of sample illustration from one subsequent edition, if available

4 How many printings or impressions of the first edition?


5 Editions from other publishers? If so, list their dates and publishers; if not, enter N/A

In alphabetical order: Amereon Limited-1976, Chivers North America-1999, Corgi-1968, Grosset & Dunlap-1920 & '48, J. Curley & Assoc.-1986 (large print), Pocket Books-1947, '82 & '77, Simon & Schuster-1985, U. of Nebraska-1996, Walter J. Black Co.-1920, '48, & '61.

6 Last date in print?


7 Total copies sold? (source and date of information?)

Pending (HarperCollins)

8 Sales figures by year? (source and date of information?)

774,500 by 1965 (70 Years of Bestsellers by Alice Payne Hackett) Pending (HarperCollins)

9 Advertising copy (transcribe significant excerpts, briefly identify where ads were placed)

N.Y. Times Book Review: February: 8th - p.77, 15th - p.98 *Review by Richard Le Gallienne on p.94* N.Y. Times Review of Books: February:22 - p.2 (quarter-page ad) March: 7 - p.3, 14 - p.2, 21 - p.2, 28 - p.4 April: 4 - p.3 N.Y. Times Book Review: April: 11 - p.165, 18 - p.194, 25 - p.204. May: 2 - p.285, 9 - p.247 [The Big Novel of 1920], 16 - p. 257, 23 - p.23, 30 - p.285. June: 6 - p.292, 13 - p.317 N.Y. Times Book Review & Magazine: July: 4 - p.15, 18 - p.17 August: 1 - p.17 [For Seven Months the Best Selling Book in the United States], 8 - p.23, 15 - p.21

10 JPEG image of sample advertisement, if available

11 Other promotion

12 Performances in other media? If so, list media, date, title, production information; if not, enter N/A

Film, 1921 Studio: Hodkinson Director: Benjamin B. Hampton Featured Players: Carl Gantvoort, Claire Adams, Robert McKim, Jean Hersholt Film, 1926 Studio: Paramount Director: John Waters Featured Players: Jack Holt, Georgia Hale, Tom Kennedy, El Brendel Film, 1933 & VHS, 1987 (b&w, 64 min.) Studio: Paramount Director: Henry Hathaway Featured Players: Randolph Scott, Verna Hillie, Harry Carey, Noah Beery, Sr. VHS, 1993 "Zane Grey, Classics of the Old West" (b&w, 399 min.) VHS, 1995 (b&w, 70min.) Studio: Bridgestone

13 Translations? If translated, give standard bibliographic information for each translation. If none, enter N/A

German: Der Mann Aus Dem Walde translated by Paul Baudisch with forward by Hans Heinz Ewers; Berlin, 1926, 424p.

14 Serialization? If serialized, give standard bibliographic information for serial publication. If none, enter N/A


15 Sequels/Prequels? Give standard bibliographic information for each. If none, enter N/A

Country Gentleman Magazine Serial beginning October 20, 1917

Assignment 3: Biographical Sketch of the Author

1 Paste your biographical sketch here (maximum 500 words)

Pearl Zane Gray (he later dropped his first name and legally changed the spelling of his last) was born to Josephine Zane and Robert Gray in Zanesville Ohio on January 31, 1872. His mother's family was originall
y of Danish descent but also boasted a proud part in the Revolutionary War. Zanesville was named after her great-grandfather. Grey's father was second-generation Irish. Zane Grey was the fourth of five children with two sisters and two brothers: Ella, Ida, Lewis Ellsworth and Romer Carl. Grey went to the University of Pennsylvania on baseball scholarship. His father was a dentist and he too studied dentistry (it's not certain whether he was forced to do so or because he was biding his time). After graduation he immediately began to est
ablish a practice in New York City. In 1902, at age 31, he met Lina "Dolly" Roth, also the year he published his first article: "A Day in Delaware" in Recreation Magazine. The next year he published his first book, Betty Zane (based on the adventures o
f his great-grandmother who had carried gunpowder in her apron to the troops at Fort Henry). Harper & Brothers had rejected it, Dolly paid to have it published. He married her two years later and they moved to Lackawaxen, Pennsylvania. They had three c
hildren, two boys and a girl: Romer in 1909, Elizabeth in 1912 and Loren in 1915. Zane Grey published eighty-nine books in his lifetime: 56 Westerns, 9 fishing novels (it was his favorite pastime), and 3 Ohio River stories as well as some juvenile fiction and baseball stories. The most famous and well read of these stories are The Lo
ne Star Ranger and Riders of the Purple Sage. His main publisher was Harper & Brothers but Outing, Grosset & Dunlap, Whitman, Walter J. Black and Pocket Books also published his works. Grey had a heart attack in 1937 that he never fully recovered from and died of a second attack at his home in Altadena, CA, on October 23, 1939 at age 67. Most of his papers are kept by his son Loren who runs the Zane Grey West Society in Los Angeles.

Assignment 4: Reception History

1 Paste contemporary reception history in here (maximum 500 words)

Many modern critics of Zane Grey discuss the simplicity of Grey's writings and ask how they could have been so popular. Critics of the time, however, seem to fully aware of how simplistic Man of the Forest is an d cite that, and its escapist possibilities, as the reason why it was so popular. As modern readers might seek their escapes in science fiction and virtual reality, readers of the 1920s were equally curious about the "wild west." Robert Le Galliene N. Y. Times Review of Books, February 8, 1920: "It is a favorite theory of certain critics and of writers whose books do not "sell" that "best sellers" can only be written by men who cannot write. Mr. Zane Grey has incurred the disgrace of popularity . . . can afford to smile at that theory and softly whisper, "sour grapes."" Rupert Hughes (quoted in advertisements): "Zane Grey has more of the epic spirit than any other living American. He gives the Homeric bigness, ruggedness, tremendousness to his people." N.Y. Times, April 18, '20: "A Western story conventional in plot and incident, but well written and with a certain nobility in its feelings for the freedom of the wide spaces." Booklist, 16:281 May '20: "A story full of the thrills and charms familiar to readers of Zane Grey." Springfield Republican March 14, '20: ""At times Mr. Grey gives play to his liking for descriptive paragraphs, which sometimes bulk too large. But theses are seldom formal. The book is among the author's best stories." The Times [London] Literary Supplement July 1, '20: "Few romances make better business out of the wilds of the West than Mr. Zane Grey: and he is well up to his mark in this stirring tale."

2 Paste subsequent reception history in here (maximum 500 words)

Most subsequent critics of Man of the Forest mention Darwinism and sometimes Capitalism as obvious themes in Grey's work. It is the proven (and the dead) writer's privilege to sit back and let people hypothesize about his or her deeper psychological leanings to their heart's content. Carlton Jackson, 1989 - "Man of the Forest shows more clearly than most of his books how mountainous settings inspired thoughts of evolution," "Grey unwittingly became an acceptable interpreter of Darwinism to a great mass of America's citizens" (p.42) Cynthia S. Hamilton 1987 - "Grey's heroines . . are civilisation's [sic] missionaries, pointing the way toward a more humane society which it is men's duty to fight to establish. Women provide the rationale for men's violence. . . Helen is revealed a s a male-ego prop on a number of different levels" (p.23) Darwinism "Grey's heroes do not make the transition to capitalists"(emphasis mine, p.90), "he has no awareness of the levels of language; he seems unaware of the important differences between the colloquial style and a more literary approach. As a result, one finds him moving quickly from a stilted literary level to an awkward attempt at colloquial speech."(p. 91) Stephen May 1997 - "laden with Darwinian thinking," "a simple, even trivial, plot with influences from Grey's beloved Robinson Crusoe." (p.124) Ann Roland 1975 - "conservative . . . an openly pantheistic book whose sole purpose seems evangelistic." (p.37)

Assignment 5: Critical Analysis

1 Paste your critical analysis in here (maximum 2500 words)

This student created an electronic text instead of writing a critical essay. 

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