"...For if a whisper means anything. If it means you'll hear it. Believe it. Be like my first little girl friend when they twisted her arm. Made her tiny note drop to the floor. Followed by her tears. When they made fun of her. And I loved her ever since."

- J.P. Donleavy from A Singular Man
Photo courtesy The J.P. Donleavy Archives.

Although Donleavy began work on the novel A Fairy Tale of New York following completion of The Ginger Man, his second completed and published novel was A Singular Man. His interview in Paris Review # 63 (see JPD Interviews for more) explains why he found it impossible at the time to finish A Fairy Tale of New York but was able to write A Singular Man.

As if Donleavy hadn't had enough publishing woes with The Ginger Man, Little, Brown & Co. gave him grief by delaying publication of A Singular Man, claiming their legal department had become concerned with possible obscenity litigation that might arise if the book were to be published unexpurgated. Now quite well-experienced in dealing with publishers, Donleavy drafted a letter to Little, Brown & Co., threatening to sue for breech of contract if the book, as submitted, was not published in short order. His sizable amount of damages asked (down to the penny) panicked the publishers making them think Donleavy had found some legal precedent unknown to them, and they relented and published the book. In several interviews, when asked if he has a favorite of his works, Donleavy states, A Singular Man.

Hunter S. Thompson had this to say about A Singular Man, "...like sitting down to an evening of good whiskey and mad laughter in a rare conversation somewhere on the edge of reality."

A Singular Man

Cloth | Atlantic Monthly Press/Little, Brown & Co., Boston, November, 1963 - 402 pages
 

First trade edition. According to an interview with publisher Seymour Lawrence, the cover art was based on the actual manuscript as submitted by Donleavy.

A Singular Man

Cloth | The Bodley Head (an imprint of Penguin), London, 1964 - 340 pages
 

One of three, "first UK edition" variants, the only difference being the colors on the dust jacket, this one having orange-red boxes around the spine and front cover titles and subheads.

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

A Singular Man

Cloth | The Bodley Head (an imprint of Penguin), London, 1964 - 340 pages
 

First UK edition, "blue" variant.

A Singular Man

Cloth | The Bodley Head (an imprint of Penguin), London, 1964 - 340 pages
 

First UK edition, "yellow" variant.

Ein ängstlicher Held

Cloth | Kindler, Germany, 1964 - 417 pages
 

German translation.

A Singular Man

Cloth | Atlantic Monthly Press/Little, Brown & Co., Boston, 19?? (no publication date given)  - 402 pages
 

2nd Atlantic/Little, Brown printing. No date given apart from the original copyright date of 1963. Dust jacket and boards identical to first printing.

A Singular Man

Cloth | Atlantic Monthly Press/Little, Brown & Co., Boston, 19?? (no publication date given) - 402 pages
 

3rd Atlantic/Little, Brown printing. No date given apart from the original copyright date of 1963. Dust jacket and boards identical to first printing.

Den enestående mand

Wraps | Gyldendal, Copenhagen, 1965 | ISBN 971932670
 

Danish translation.

A Singular Man

Wraps | Penguin, Middlesex, England, 1966 - 349 pages
 

First UK paperback edition. Black covers and spine.

En Säregen Man

Wraps | Bonniers boktryckeri, Stockholm, 1966 - 296 pages
 

Swedish translation.

Special thanks to Gareth Griffiths for providing the cover scan and publishing info for this edition.

Un uomo singolare

Binding? | Garzanti, Milano, 1966 - 404 pages
 

Italian translation.

A Singular Man

Wraps | Penguin, Middlesex, England, 1967 - 349 pages
 

2nd Penguin printing. Black covers with orange spine.

A Singular Man

Cloth | Delacorte Press, New York, 1967 - 402  pages
 

First Delacorte edition.

A Singular Man

Wraps | Dell, New York, September 1967 - 304  pages
 

First US paperback edition.

Kawatta Otoko

Cloth | Kawade Shobo Shinsha, Tokyo, 1967 - 349 pages

Japanese translation. From the library of J.P. Donleavy. Cover photos by Bill Dunn. Very special thanks to J.P. Donleavy and Bill Dunn for this addition to the Compendium site.

Den enestående mand

Cloth | Gyldendals Bogklub, 1967 | 359 pages
 

Danish book club edition.

Anteeksiantamaton herra Smith

Binding? | Hki: Otava, 1967
 

Finnish translation.

UN Hombre Extraño

Cloth | Luis de Caralt/Colección-Gigante, Barcelona, 1968

Spanish translation. (Also titled "UN Hombre Singular" on front end paper).
From the library of J.P. Donleavy. Cover photograph by Bill Dunn. Very special thanks to J.P. Donleavy and Bill Dunn for this addition to the Compendium site.

Ein ängstlicher Held

Cloth | Kindler, München, 1968. 420 pages.
 

German translation. From the library of J.P. Donleavy. Cover photograph by Bill Dunn. Very special thanks to J.P. Donleavy and Bill Dunn for this addition to the Compendium site.

A Singular Man

Wraps | Dell, New York, April, 1968 - 304  pages
 

2nd Dell printing.

A Singular Man

Wraps | Delta, (an imprint of Dell) New York, September 1968 - 402  pages
 

First Delta printing.

A Singular Man

Wraps | Penguin, Middlesex, England, 1969 -  349 pages
 

3rd Penguin printing, with slightly different front cover from previous printings and completely different back cover.

A Singular Man

Wraps | Dell, New York, 1970 - 304  pages
 

3rd Dell printing.

A Singular Man

Wraps | Penguin, Middlesex, England, 1970 -  349 pages
 

4th Penguin printing.

Un homme singulier

Wraps | Denoël, Paris 1971 - 381 pages
 

French translation.

A Singular Man

Wraps | Penguin, Middlesex, England, 1971 -  349 pages
 

5th Penguin printing.

A Singular Man

Cloth | The Bodley Head (an imprint of Penguin), London 1972 - ISBN 0370005724 - 340 pages
 

2nd Bodley Head printing with entirely new dust jacket art. Dark gray boards.

A Singular Man

Wraps | Penguin, Middlesex, England, 1973 - ISBN 140024476 - 349 pages
 

6th Penguin printing.

A Singular Man

Wraps | Dell, Laurel edition, September, 1973 - ISBN 0440379416 - 304 pages
 

First Dell Laurel printing.

A Singular Man

Wraps | Dell, Laurel edition, December, 1973 - ISBN 0440379416 - 304 pages
 

2nd Dell Laurel printing.

A Singular Man

Wraps | Dell, New York, 1973 - ISBN 0440379415 - 304  pages
 

4th Dell printing.

A Singular Man

Wraps | Dell, Laurel edition, August, 1975 - ISBN 0440379416 - 304 pages
 

3rd Dell Laurel printing.

A Singular Man

Wraps | Penguin, Middlesex, England, 1975 - ISBN 140024476 - 349 pages
 

7th Penguin printing.

En säregen man

Wraps | Wahlström & Widstrand, Stockholm, 1975

2nd Swedish translation.

A Singular Man

Wraps | Penguin, Middlesex, England, 1977 - ISBN 140024476 - 349 pages
 

8th Penguin printing.

A Singular Man

Wraps | Penguin, Middlesex, England, 1978 - ISBN 140024476 - 349 pages
 

9th Penguin printing.

A Singular Man

Wraps | Dell, Laurel edition, June, 1979- ISBN 0440379416 - 304 pages
 

4th Dell Laurel printing.

A Singular Man

Cloth | The Bodley Head (an imprint of Penguin), London 1979 - ISBN 0370005724 - 340 pages

3rd Bodley Head printing. Same DJ as second printing, but boards are grayish-green.

A Singular Man

Wraps | Penguin, Middlesex, England, 1979 - ISBN 140024476 - 349 pages
 

10th Penguin printing.

A Singular Man

Wraps | Penguin, Middlesex, England, 1983 - ISBN 140024476 - 349 pages
 

11th Penguin printing.

Een man zonder weerga

Wraps | Meulenhaoff, Amsterdam 1984 - ISBN 9029011106 - 379 pages

Dutch translation. From the library of J.P. Donleavy. Cover photo by Bill Dunn. Very special thanks to J.P. Donleavy and Bill Dunn for this addition to the Compendium site.

A Singular Man

Wraps | Penguin, London, England, 1985 - ISBN 140024476 - 349 pages
 

12th Penguin printing.

A Singular Man

Wraps | Penguin, London, England, 1987 - ISBN 140024476 - 349 pages
 

14th Penguin printing.

A Singular Man

Wraps | Atlantic Monthly Press (now Grove/Atlantic) New York, 1989 - ISBN 0971132656 - 402 pages
 

First AMP printing.

A Singular Man

Wraps | Atlantic Monthly Press (now Grove/Atlantic) New York, 1989 - ISBN 0971132656 - 402 pages
 

2nd. AMP printing.

Un hombre singular

Cloth | Edhasa, Barcelona, 1989 - ISBN 8435008053 - 424 pages
 

Spanish translation. As of Jan., 2000, still available from publisher.

A Singular Man

Wraps | Atlantic Monthly Press (now Grove/Atlantic) New York, 1990 - ISBN 0971132656 - 402 pages
 

3rd. AMP printing.

A Singular Man

Wraps | Atlantic Monthly Press (now Grove/Atlantic) New York, 1990 - ISBN 0971132656 - 402 pages
 

4th. AMP printing.

A Singular Man

Wraps | Atlantic Monthly Press (now Grove/Atlantic) New York, 1990 - ISBN 0971132656 - 402 pages
 

5th. AMP printing.

A Singular Man

Wraps | Atlantic Monthly Press (now Grove/Atlantic) New York, 1991 - ISBN 0971132656 - 402 pages
 

6th. AMP printing.

A Singular Man

Wraps | Atlantic Monthly Press (now Grove/Atlantic) New York, 1992 - ISBN 0971132656 - 402 pages
 

7th. AMP printing.

A Singular Man

Wraps | Atlantic Monthly Press (now Grove/Atlantic) New York, 1993 - ISBN 0971132656 - 402 pages
 

8th. AMP printing.

A Singular Man

Wraps | Atlantic Monthly Press (now Grove/Atlantic) New York, 1993 - ISBN 0971132656 - 402 pages
 

9th. AMP printing.

A Singular Man

Wraps | Atlantic Monthly Press (now Grove/Atlantic) New York, 1994 - ISBN 0971132656 - 402 pages
 

10th. AMP printing.

A Singular Man

Wraps | Atlantic Monthly Press (now Grove/Atlantic) New York, 1995 - ISBN 0971132656 - 402 pages
 

11th. AMP printing.

A Singular Man

Wraps | Atlantic Monthly Press (now Grove/Atlantic) New York, 1995 - ISBN 0971132656 - 402 pages
 

12th. AMP printing.

A Singular Man

Wraps | Atlantic Monthly Press (now Grove/Atlantic) New York, 1996 - ISBN 0971132656 - 402 pages
 

13th. AMP printing.

A Singular Man

Wraps | Atlantic Monthly Press (now Grove/Atlantic) New York, 1996 - ISBN 0971132656 - 402 pages
 

14th. AMP printing.

A Singular Man

Wraps | Atlantic Monthly Press (now Grove/Atlantic) New York, 1996 - ISBN 0971132656 - 402 pages
 

15th. AMP printing.

A Singular Man

Wraps | Atlantic Monthly Press (now Grove/Atlantic) New York, 1997 - ISBN 0971132656 - 402 pages
 

16th. AMP printing.

A Singular Man

Wraps | Atlantic Monthly Press (now Grove/Atlantic) New York, 1997 - ISBN 0971132656 - 402 pages
 

17th. AMP printing.

A Singular Man

Wraps | Atlantic Monthly Press (now Grove/Atlantic) New York, 1998 - ISBN 0971132656 - 402 pages
 

18th. AMP printing.

A Singular Man

Wraps | Atlantic Monthly Press (now Grove/Atlantic) New York, 1999 - ISBN 0971132656 - 402 pages
 

19th AMP printing.

A Singular Man

Wraps | Atlantic Monthly Press (now Grove/Atlantic) New York, 2002 - ISBN 0971132656 - 402 pages
 

20th AMP printing.

Un hombre singular

Sudameridana, Buenos Aires, Feb.. 20, 2007

Argentine translation.

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A Singular Man

Wraps | Atlantic Monthly Press (now Grove/Atlantic) New York, 2006 - ISBN 0971132656 - 402 pages
 

21st AMP printing.

A Singular Man

Wraps | Atlantic Monthly Press (now Grove/Atlantic) New York, 2008 - ISBN 0971132656 - 402 pages
 

22nd AMP printing.

A Singular Man

Wraps | Atlantic Monthly Press (now Grove/Atlantic) New York, 2011 - ISBN 0971132656 - 402 pages
 

23rd AMP printing.

A Singular Man

Wraps | Atlantic Monthly Press (now Grove/Atlantic) New York, 2015 - ISBN 0971132656 - 402 pages
 

24st AMP printing.

A Singular Man Kindle edition

Amazon | December 1, 2007
 

Auto delivered wirelessly.

A Singular Man audiobook Audible Audio Edition (download)
read by Robert G. Slade | Audible Inc. | October 31, 2013 |listening time: 13 hours - 4 minutes

Available at Amazon

A Singular Man audiobook Una Edition (MP3 CD)
read by Robert G. Slade | Brilliance Audio | July 8, 2014

Available at Amazon