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Mad Man's Drum

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Author: Lynd Ward

Illustrator: Lynd Ward

WARD, Lynd. Mad Man’s Drum. A Novel in Woodcuts. NY: Jonathan Cape [1930]. 8vo, [259]pp. Pictorial boards with black cloth spine with pictorial paper label. Black endpapers; b&w woodcuts on every leaf. Bookplate. Spine ends, corners, and edges lightly rubbed, else a clean, tight copy.

First edition. The second of Ward’s six wordless novels in woodcuts, told in 118 images that detail the story of a slave trader who steals a demon-faced drum from an African man he murders, and the consequences for him and his family. Blending Art Deco and Expressionist styles, Ward’s ground-breaking novels are considered some of the pioneering examples of the graphic novel form.