First edition of this hilarious and charming fairy tale from the Kingdom of Petland, illustrated by photographs of puppies and kittens dressed like the main players.
"Grandma Flufpaw's eyes had a far-away look as she peered through her shell-rimmed spectacles and you could just tell a story was coming."
THE KING WHO NEVER SMILED is part of the "Petland Photo Tales" series, all by Harry Whittier Frees. Frees describes his puppy and kitten (and bunny) photography methods on the inner front cover: photographing animals "requires an exceedingly fertile imagination and infinite patience [...] The secret of success is kindness, first, last and all the time."
The SATURDAY EVENING POST speculates that Frees "launched an American obsession with documenting every possible angle of our precious felines" with his Petland series and posed-animal postcards, comparing his work to modern cat memes. Frees's work definitely sits near the roots of the lolcats family tree.
Read more: Nicholas Gilmore, "The Cat Meme Photographer from a Century Ago," The Saturday Evening Post 10 September 2018.
Chicago: Manning Publishing Company, 1932. 10'' x 6.5''. Original pictorial stiff wrappers, saddle-stapled. Illustrated with black-and-white photographs.  leaves. Spine cracked with a careful glue repair, wrapper with light edgewear. Early tape reinforcements to center staples. Bright.
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