Photo courtesy of The J.P. Donleavy Archives.
"[New York]...the city that is too rich to laugh at and too lonely and ruthless to love and where
Happiness
Is
A big cat
With a mouse
On a square mile
Of linoleum."


- J.P. Donleavy from A Fairy Tale of New York

A long time coming, the novel version of this story was finally issued by Seymour Lawrence/Delacorte Press in 1973. Donleavy published segments earlier as a short story by the same title and scenes from the stage adaptation (see Anthologies and Periodicals for more on the short story and Donleavy - Playwright for more on the complete stage version).

The book was begun after The Ginger Man and was titled "Helen," which is the name of Cornelius Christian's deceased wife in all versions of the story, as well as the title of the first act in the stage adaptation. For reasons unknown the novel "Helen" was set aside, later to be completed as A Fairy Tale of New York.

There is a considerable amount of confusion regarding this title A Fairy Tale of New York (the novel) and Fairy Tales of New York (the play). And then there's the Pogues' song "Fairy Tale of New York."

A Fairy Tale of New York

Cloth | Delacorte Press, New York, 1973 - ISBN 0440026245 - 341 pages
 

First trade edition. Green boards.

A Fairy Tale of New York

Cloth | Eyre Methuen, Ltd., London, 1973 - ISBN 413450309 - 410  pages
 

First UK edition.

To purchase books by J.P. Donleavy, go to the Buyers' Guide.

A Fairy Tale of New York

Cloth | Delacorte Press, New York, 1973 - ISBN 0440026245 - 341 pages

2nd Delacorte Press printing. Only noticeable difference is the second printing statement on front end papers. No month given.

A Fairy Tale of New York

Cloth | Delacorte Press, New York, 1973 - ISBN 0440026245 - 341 pages

3rd Delacorte Press printing. Only noticeable difference is the third printing statement on front end papers. No month given.

A Fairy Tale of New York

Cloth | Delacorte Press, New York, 1973 - ISBN 0440026245 - 341 pages

4th Delacorte Press printing. Same DJ and green boards as prior printings but with green edges on pages. 4th printing statement appears on front end papers, again with no month of printing given.

A Fairy Tale of New York

Cloth | Delacorte Press, New York, 1973 - ISBN 0440026245 - 341 pages

5th Delacorte Press printing. Same green page edges as 4th printing; DJ and boards same as all other printings. Again only printing number given, no month.

A Fairy Tale of New York

Wraps | Dell Laurel, New York, September, 1974 - ISBN 44003233175 - 379 pages
 

First US paperback edition; first Dell printing.

A Fairy Tale of New York

Wraps | Dell Laurel, New York, December, 1974 - ISBN 44003233175 - 379 pages
 

2nd Dell printing.

Cuento De Hadas En Nueva York

Wraps | Editorial Sudamericana, Buenos Aires 1974 - 391pages
 

First Spanish language translation.

A Fairy Tale of New York

Wraps | Penguin, Middlesex, England, 1975 - ISBN 0140039643 - 334 pages
 

First Penguin printing; first UK paperback edition.

Fiaba a New York

Cloth | Garzanti Libri, Italy, 1975 - ISBN 8811660106 - 360 pages
 

Italian translation.

Un conte de fées new-yorkais

Wraps | Folio/Editions Denoël, Paris, 1977 - ISBN 2070380645 - 465 pages
 

French translation.

A Fairy Tale of New York

Wraps | Dell Laurel, New York, November, 1977 - ISBN 44003233175 - 379 pages
 

3rd Dell printing.

cuento de hadas en nueva york

Wraps | Bruguera/Libra Amigo, Barcelona, 1977
 

Spanish translation.

A Fairy Tale of New York

Wraps | Penguin, Middlesex, England, 1978 - ISBN 0140039643 - 334 pages
 

2nd Penguin printing.

A Fairy Tale of New York

Wraps | Penguin, Middlesex, England, 1979 - ISBN 0140039643 - 334 pages
 

3nd Penguin printing.

A Fairy Tale of New York

Wraps | Penguin, Middlesex, England, 1980 - ISBN 0140039643 - 334 pages
 

4th Penguin printing.

cuento de hadas en nueva york

Wraps | Bruguera/Libra Amigo, Barcelona, 1980?
 

Spanish translation.

A Fairy Tale of New York

Wraps | Penguin, Middlesex, England, 1982 - ISBN 0140039643 - 334 pages
 

5th Penguin printing.

A Fairy Tale of New York

Wraps | Penguin, Middlesex, England, 1984 - ISBN 0140039643 - 334 pages
 

6th Penguin printing.

Cuento De Hadas En Nueva York

Wraps | Editorial Sudamericana, Buenos Aires 1986 - ISBN 9500703912
 

Argentine translation in Spanish.

Cuento de hadas en New York

Wraps | Pocket-Edhasa, April 1988, Barcelona - ISBN 8435015645 - 423 pages
 

New Spanish translation; first Edhasa printing.

Un conte de fées new-yorkais

Wraps | Collection Folio (an imprint of Gallimard) #1976, Paris, September 1988 - ISBN 2070380645 - 465 pages
 

French translation. 2nd Folio printing.

A Fairy Tale of New York

Wraps | Atlantic Monthly Press (now Grove-Atlantic), March, 1989 - ISBN 0871132648 - 341 pages
 

First AMP printing.


Cuento de hadas en New York

Wraps | Pocket-Edhasa, April 1990, Barcelona - ISBN 8435015645 - 423 pages
 

2nd Edhasa printing.

A Fairy Tale of New York

Wraps | Atlantic Monthly Press (now Grove-Atlantic), 19?? - ISBN 0871132648 - 341 pages
 

2nd AMP printing. No dates are given on AMP reprints between the first printing date of March, 1989 and the 10th printing in 2001.

A Fairy Tale of New York

Wraps | Atlantic Monthly Press (now Grove-Atlantic), 19?? - ISBN 0871132648 - 341 pages
 

3rd AMP printing. No dates are given on AMP reprints between the first printing date of March, 1989 and the 10th printing in 2001.

A Fairy Tale of New York

Wraps | Atlantic Monthly Press (now Grove-Atlantic), 19?? - ISBN 0871132648 - 341 pages
 

4th AMP printing. No dates are given on AMP reprints between the first printing date of March, 1989 and the 10th printing in 2001.

A Fairy Tale of New York

Wraps | Atlantic Monthly Press (now Grove-Atlantic), 19?? - ISBN 0871132648 - 341 pages
 

5th AMP printing. No dates are given on AMP reprints between the first printing date of March, 1989 and the 10th printing in 2001.

Volshebnaya skazka N'yu-Jorka

Cloth | Gumanitarnoe agentstvo "Akademicheskii proekt", Sankt-Peterburg, 1995 | 430 pages | ISBN 5733100109

Russian translation. Edition includes the complete novel, plus several stories from the collection Meet My Maker the Mad Molecule: "Meet My Maker," "One For Yes," "When I Bought a Bear," and "Franz F." Special thanks to Ivan Denisov for contributing the information on this edition and cover photo.

A Fairy Tale of New York

Wraps | Atlantic Monthly Press (now Grove-Atlantic), 19?? - ISBN 0871132648 - 341 pages
 

6th AMP printing. No dates are given on AMP reprints between the first printing date of March, 1989 and the 10th printing in 2001.

A Fairy Tale of New York

Wraps | Atlantic Monthly Press (now Grove-Atlantic), 19?? - ISBN 0871132648 - 341 pages
 

7th AMP printing. No dates are given on AMP reprints between the first printing date of March, 1989 and the 10th printing in 2001.

Conte de fées new-yorkais

Wraps | Denoël, Paris, March, 1997
 

French translation.

A Fairy Tale of New York

Wraps | Atlantic Monthly Press (now Grove-Atlantic), 19?? - ISBN 0871132648 - 341 pages
 

8th AMP printing. No dates are given on AMP reprints between the first printing date of March, 1989 and the 10th printing in 2001.

A Fairy Tale of New York

Wraps | Atlantic Monthly Press (now Grove-Atlantic), 19?? - ISBN 0871132648 - 341 pages
 

9th AMP printing. No dates are given on AMP reprints between the first printing date of March, 1989 and the 10th printing in 2001.

A Fairy Tale of New York

Wraps | Atlantic Monthly Press (now Grove-Atlantic), 2001 - ISBN 0871132648 - 341 pages
 

10th AMP printing. Smaller format with revised cover design.

Cuento de hadas en Nueva York

Wraps | Pocket-Edhasa, 2003, Barcelona - ISBN 8435015645 - 423 pages
 

3rd Edhasa printing.

A Fairy Tale of New York

Wraps | Atlantic Monthly Press (now Grove-Atlantic), 2004 - ISBN 0871132648 - 341 pages
 

11th AMP printing.

A Fairy Tale of New York

Wraps | Atlantic Monthly Press (now Grove-Atlantic), 2006 - ISBN 0871132648 - 341 pages

12th AMP printing.

Volshebnaya skazka N'yu-Jorka

Cloth | Symposium, Sankt-Peterburg, 2007 | ISBN 589091118X - 480 pages

Russian translation.

A Fairy Tale of New York

Wraps | Atlantic Monthly Press (now Grove-Atlantic), 2009 - ISBN 0871132648 - 341 pages

13th AMP printing.

A Fairy Tale of New York

Wraps | Atlantic Monthly Press (now Grove-Atlantic), 2011 - ISBN 0871132648 - 341 pages

14th AMP printing.

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A Fairy Tale of New York

Ebook edition, Lilliput Press, Dublin, 2013

Available in Kindle, Nook & PDF formats.