Churchill's first book, published in 1898. Churchill used family connections to get himself assigned to an expeditionary force on the Northwest Frontier of India in 1897. This is the area which today is Pakistan and Afghanistan, and the reports of 1897 differ from those of today mainly in the weapons employed. Churchill wrote a series of despatches for The Daily Telegraph for which he received £5 per column. Returning to Bangalore in late 1897, Churchill used these letters as the basis for his first book, THE STORY OF THE MALAKAND FIELD FORCE First editions are extremely scarce now with prices over $5000 regularly seen. The first edition was issued in a light green cloth, but there was also a Colonial edition in decorated grey green cloth, which is actually far scarcer than the normal home first edition, as most copies sold in India and such places were soon destroyed by the unfavourable conditions. The first edition was issued with many errors as Churchill was in India and so a new revised edition was rushed out in 1899, and this Silver Library edition had two impressions: the first said "New edition", the second said "New impression". Many collectors mistakenly think the first impression is not so. A small cheap edition was during the First World war by Thomas Nelson. This work was out of print for many years until a new edition was issued in late 1989 by Leo Cooper at £14.95, but has now gone out of print again.  
1st edition Colonial edition Silver Library edition
Nelson edition Leo Cooper edition Norton edition

<< Back to Guide