First Edition Points and Criteria for The Man with the Golden Arm

Year Published: 1949
Author Last Name: Algren
Author First Name: Nelson
Publisher: Doubleday
Original Price: $3.00
Pages: 343

FIRST EDITION is stated at the bottom of the copyright page. Boards are light gray cloth with red and green lettering on the spine and green top stain. Endpapers are green. Back of dust jacket has photo of the author and three reviews - Chicago Sun, Malcolm Cowley, and Chicago Tribune.

Note: The book club edition is smaller than the true first edition and the dust jacket would appear shorter if married to a true first book. The book club boards are darker and lacks red lettering on the spine.

The Man with the Golden Arm won the National Book Award.

Picture of the 1949 first edition dust jacket for The Man with the Golden Arm.
Picture of the 1949 first edition dust jacket for The Man with the Golden Arm.

Picture of the first edition copyright page for The Man with the Golden Arm.
Picture of the first edition copyright page for The Man with the Golden Arm.

Picture of dust jacket where original $3.00 price is found for The Man with the Golden
Picture of dust jacket where original $3.00 price is found for The Man with the Golden Arm.

Picture of the back dust jacket for the first edition of The Man with the Golden Arm.
Picture of the back dust jacket for the first edition of The Man with the Golden Arm.

Picture of the first edition Doubleday boards for The Man with the Golden Arm.
Picture of the first edition Doubleday boards for The Man with the Golden Arm.

Picture of the back dust jacket flap for the first edition of The Man with the Golden
Picture of the back dust jacket flap for the first edition of The Man with the Golden Arm.

Picture of the first edition title page for The Man with the Golden Arm.
Picture of the first edition title page for The Man with the Golden Arm.

Identification picture of The Man with the Golden Arm.

The book on the bottom is the true first edition and the book lying on top of it is a
The book on the bottom is the true first edition and the book lying on top of it is a book club edition. Notice the size and color difference. Also notice that the words "THE MAN" and "THE GOLDEN" are red on the true first edition.

The book on the left is the true first edition of The Man with the Golden Arm.  The book
The book on the left is the true first edition of The Man with the Golden Arm. The book on the right is a book club edition. Notice the size difference.

The book on the left is the true first edition of The Man with the Golden Arm.  The book
The book on the left is the true first edition of The Man with the Golden Arm. The book on the right is a book club edition. Notice that the reviews are different.

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Disclaimer: This website is intended to help guide you and give you insight into what to look for when identifying first editions. The information is compiled from the experience of reputable collectors and dealers in the industry. Gathering and updating information about these books is more an art than a science, and new identication criteria and points of issue are sometimes discovered that may contradict currently accepted identification points. This means that the information presented here may not always be 100% accurate. If you spot a mistake, drop us an e-mail and we will do our best to investigate and correct it.