The Master Key: An Electrical Fairy Tale Founded Upon the Mysteries of Electricity and the Optimism of Its Devotees. It Was Written for Boys, But Others May Read It
Indianapolis: Bowen-Merrill, 1901. Hardcover. First Edition, second printing; binding 'A' with Bowen-Merrill imprint on lower spine and comma in last line on copyright page to the right of "n' in Brooklyn. 8vo. 245 pp. 12 color plates and black & white illustrations by F(anny) Y. Cory. Publisher's green cloth with color plate affixed to front cover; gilt lettering and decoration. Light wear to extremities with corners starting to show through; front hinge cracked else a near fine copy. Item #18513
The author dedicated this title to his second son, Robert, and it is generally thought that Rob, the novel's protagonist, was based on Robert Baum. "L. Frank Baum has written a number of clever books for children but nothing so strikingly original, so novel in invention or so genuinely entertaining as his latest story, 'The Master Key - An Electrical Fairy Tale.' Mr. Baum has the gift of writing up to children - and a rare gift it is." - Democrat Chronicle. (Bienvenue & Schmidt p.196).