The War Hound and the World's Pain. A Fable
New York: Timescape Books, . From the Bart Auerbach Collection. Small, narrow folio (10 3/4 x 6 inches), original printed yellow wrappers. Minor production fault affecting blank portion of verso of last leaf; in very good condition. Item #409198
Advance uncorrected galley proofs for the first edition, printed on both sides, perfect bound, entirely different in format from the published version. A dedication copy, signed and dated ("NY, October, 1981") by Moorcock on the title-page and inscribed by him on the dedication page: "To Charles [Platt], Who probably understands all the implications of this dedication more than anyone. Cheerio, you bastard. Mike." The printed dedication reads: "For Doctor A. C. Papadakis, Valerie, Amanda, Charles Platt and all those others who, with Jill [Moorcock's wife], helped create the circumstances that led to the writing of this book." This fantasy novel , set during the Thirty Years War, grew out of the breakdown of Moorcock's marriage - fact ironically reflected in the dedication and the presentation inscription. (BA)
This was the first of Moorcock's "Van Beck" series of novels, with its hero – a mercenary and freethinker – a damned soul in a castle owned by Lucifer. Surprisingly, he is tasked with finding the Holy Grail, the "cure to the world's pain", that will also cure Lucifer's pain by reconciling him with God.