Gallico, Paul. Scruffy, a Diversion. London: Michael Joseph, Ltd., 1962. First English edition. 20.5 cm. 296 pages. Bound in blue cloth with gilt lettering on the spine. Dust wrapper is in blue and white with black lettering on the front panel and spine with a bust-length portrait of the author on the back panel. The dust wrapper design was by Leslie F. Haywood, signed in the lower right-hand corner of the front panel, “L.S.H.” Price of 16s not clipped.
A novel, the author drew inspiration for Scruffy from a telegram from Winston Churchill about the welfare of the Barbary apes on Gibraltar in August 1944, directing that every effort be made to restore their dwindling number to twenty-four and that this number should be maintained thereafter. Loveable Scruffy is “the ugliest, nastiest-tempered, roughest old villain of a Barbary ape that ever snatched a tourist’s camera or bit the hand that fed him.” Both the book and the dust wrapper are in fine condition, with only slight sunning of the spine of the dust wrapper.