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The Girl Who Owned A City by O.T. Nelson (1941-). Published by Lerner Publications Company, Minneapolis, Minnesota, 1975. This is the First Edition hardcover book. ISBN: 0822509563
O.T. "Terry" Nelson's one and only classic post-apocalyptic fantasy/science fiction novel set in Glen Ellyn, Illinois, in which a deadly virus sweeps the globe, killing off everyone over the age of 12 in a matter of months. The two main characters, Lisa and Todd Nelson, are in fact O.T. Nelson's children. The novel was required reading for many grade school/high school kids in the mid-to-late 1970s and remains a cult favorite. Nelson originally received a $2,000 advance for the book and another $1,500 on completion with no royalty agreement. He later received $35,000 and an over cost royalty agreement upon the book's re-release in 1994.
This is a superb, rare copy in Very Good condition in its near pristine dust jacket. There are some minor brown stains on the first blank page and several middle pages which keeps it out of the Like New category. Book is authentically dated and signed by the author to his one-time neighbors, J. Arthur and Alice Lemmon. An address sticker (Medinah, Illinois) for the couple, identifying them as one-time owners of the book, is on the first end cover and a stamped address for the couple (Doylestown, Penn.), is on the back end cover. This establishes provenance for the book, which Nelson apparently gave to them shortly after its publication in early March 1975.
Inscription reads in red ink: "3/22/75. Art and Alice, I hope you enjoy the story as much as I enjoyed writing it. We miss you. Sharon does especially. You were good friends to our family. The paint on the house looks great (must have been the expert advice). Best of luck. O.T. Nelson."
The reference to the paint job is an inside joke. O.T. Nelson started a small house-painting company called College Craft Painters in 1960, which employed many college students for summer work.
Science fiction/fantasy collectors take note: This is the very scarce first edition hardcover book which rarely comes up for sale. Mostly what you see are damaged/junk ex-library copies or the paperback reprints. This one is a real treasure in superb condition – and signed and inscribed to boot in 1975, the year of publication.
Book originally sold for $6.95 as noted on the inside dust jacket.