Dreamy Sales of Jung's Red Book – We were absolutely amazed

Carl G. Jung's Red Book
Jung's original ornate calligraphy and tempera illustrations are reproduced in “The Red Book,” which is partly hand-bound.

Jung’s original ornate calligraphy and tempera illustrations are reproduced in “The Red Book,” which is partly hand-bound.

As reported in the New York Times: “We were absolutely amazed,” said Elaine Petrocelli, an owner of Book Passage, an independent company with bookstores in San Francisco and suburban Corte Madera, Calif. “Here you have a $195 book in what’s supposed to be a bad time, and we have many, many orders for it. I think we have over 20 orders for it.”

The book is considered the Holy Grail by many Jungians, who for years had only heard rumors of its existence. For decades Jung’s descendants kept the original, leather-bound volume, which Jung worked on between 1912 and 1928, locked in a bank vault.

It took Sonu Shamdasani, the primary translator and the writer of a 33-page introductory essay, two years to persuade Jung’s family to let him start working on a color copy of the original book.

Mr. Mairs first saw about 30 facsimile pages of “The Red Book” and some of Mr. Shamdasani’s introductory material.

“I was blown away,” Mr. Mairs recalled. “I really am not a Jungian. I looked at it simply as an object that was so beautiful I couldn’t keep my hands off it.”

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