Roots. Warmly Inscribed by Alex Haley. First Edition, First Printing. Doubleday. New York, 1976.


Alex Haley is a great American author whose works have made a lasting impact on the tradition of Black literature in America. Born to a high-achieving military and academic family, Haley was encouraged to attend college, but after a shaky first semester, his father convinced him to enlist in the military instead. Haley went on to serve honorably in the U.S. Coast Guard for two decades before turning his sights to literature. His first book, The Autobiography of Malcolm X, was a groundbreaking achievement of collaboration. It is widely cited as one of the most culturally influential texts of the last 100 years. Yet Haley achieved even more acclaim for Roots, the novel which won him the Pulitzer Prize for Fiction in 1977. It is the fictional narrative of Kunta Kinte, an African forced into slavery, and his descendants in the United States. Roots is a powerful look at lineage and American history, told with grace, honesty, and closeness to its characters. In the following years, it was adapted into a television miniseries which was equally popular. It starred a young LaVar Burton and John Amos with music composed by Quincy Jones. Two years later, a sequel series was released, starring James Earl Jones. The series was then remade in 2016, led by an all-star cast yet again, with Forest Whitaker, Anika Noni Rose, Anna Paquin, Mekhi Phifer, and Laurence Fishburne. Much credit has been given to Haley and Roots for spurring a genealogical movement in the Black community, with Black families taking note of Haley’s careful research and archival sources. For all these contributions, there is no overstating the importance of Roots.

This first edition, first printing is warmly inscribed by Alex Haley on the front endpaper: “October 26, 1976 / Svea Smith – Kunta’s family wishes you the very best! / Alex Haley”. In the original half cloth boards, near fine with only minor rubbing to spine ends. Text block fine. In the original dust jacket, near fine with only very minor chips and rubbing to edges.

A near fine inscribed first edition of Roots.

1 in stock


Roots. Warmly Inscribed by Alex Haley. First Edition, First Printing. Doubleday. New York, 1976.

Additional Information provides shipping weight and dimensions.

Additional information

Weight 5 lbs
Dimensions 12 × 9 × 5 in