r SELLERs

=ring aura ng results >xCursions erious re = version, >aves one he inven- work of Ids much 1e reader, excellent effect of The char- 1 subtlety ression of 2>ye is due r of hero; the book nd to be. ‘land, the om. prob- nd. The but their Oo equate medieval tiles who ding the

1, Ph.D., versity,

Jhio

BEST SELLERS.

The Semi-Monthly Book Review

Published by the University of Scranton, Scranton, Pennsylvania

, Editor John A. Jaekkn, S.J.

Associate Editors

One N. Wolf, Ph.D. ugeric P. /Willging

(Catholic University)

Business Manager Mildred Norton (Assistant Librarian)

BOOK OF THE MONTH CLUB—MARCH SELECTION

The Wall

Hersey, John

Knopf. Feb. 27, 1950. 632p. $4.00.

There is perhaps a certain amount of editorial hyper- bole in Alfred Knopf’s statement that this latest work by the author of A Bell for Adano and Hiroshima “‘is one of the truly great novels of our generation’, but there is no doubt that it is John Hersey’s most im- portant work thus far. It is also the first presentation we have had of one aspect of World War I[—the attempt by the Germans to completely exterminate the Jewish population of Poland, especially that part of it centering in Warsaw. The Wall tells how that attempt failed—how human beings have that about them which resists annihilation, and how, individually and collec- tively, the Jews of Warsaw survived.

To tell the story of the Warsaw ghetto between 1939 and 1943, Hersey has resorted to the familiar literary device of the rediscovery of lost records. The records, in this case, are those contained in the so-called “Levin- son archive”, a compilation of all sorts of materials, diaristic, conversation records, official records, personal reflections, and so on—all put together by Noach Levinson, one of Warsaw’s Jews. From the four mil- lion or so words of the archive in its orginal form, enough has been extracted to make up this volume of more than 600 pages, and to give a thorough picture of life in the ghetto during the four years during which the Germans carried on their extermination campaign.

Scores of figures pass through these pages—Levinson knew everyone in the ghetto, was known to all, and had the confidence of all. In the reactions of each to the four years’ terror, not only physically, but mentally, Levinson was passionately interested, and that all should be got down on paper, to be preserved for the world to see how the Jews had lived through the terror, was his object. He is, then, the major char- acter of the book, in the sense of being a catalyst, as well as a recorder, of the varied characters in the ghetto; and we know more of him, by the time the book ends, than of the characters whose lives and hearts he has opened before us.

The unit of survival during the worst days of the terror was the “family”, but not all families were connected by blood ties. At first a blood-related family occupied one flat, or one room, but as the lines of the ghetto were drawn tighter and tighter, “family” lines broaa- ened, to include in each unit all friends of the family,

}

and even homeless and friendless souls generally. With iree family groups, the story is chiefly concerned— he Apts, the Mazurs, and the Bersons, but each family as its own group of hangers-on and dependents. The canvas becomes, moment by moment, more crowded with characters, but it becomes easier, moment by mo- ment also, to single out the important souls—Rachel Apt, homely, brilliant, and brave, the “Little Mother” of her large group; Dolek Berson a dreamy, impractical man, whose strength grows as the terror becomes greater; Halinka Apt and Rutka Mazur, beautiful girls both, but antithetical in their reactions to suffering, and with opposed views of duty; the deeply religious rabbis Mazur, Goldflamm, Mandeltort; Benlevi, Zilber- zweig and Rappaport, leaders of opposing Jewish politi- ‘al factions, carrying on political activity in the face of annihilation. Dozens of others there are, too, some crossing the pages for but a moment, but all coming within the ken of the eager Levinson, and all assigned their places in the great drama of death.

The diabolical methods of the Germans in their cam- paign to kill off hundreds of thousands of Jews, we all know quite well by now, from multitudes of White Papers, captured films, picture collections, and the testi- mony of survivors and witnesses; graphic though Her- sey’s accounts are of such things, we have heard them before, and perhaps they have lost force in the many tellings—but this does not prevent a passionate interest in the lives of these most real men and women as they move through the Levinson Archive. Not only do Hersey’s [or Levinson’s, for we often forget, I think, that this is a fictional device] people stand before us in the round, but we get a feeling of the validity of Her- sey’s picture of the very quality that is Jewishness—

CONTENTS

Book and Classification The Wall (Ila) Innocents at Home (I) World and Paradise (IV) The Sea Eagles (IIb) Louis Pasteur, Free Lance of Science (1)

Author Hersey, John Considine, Bob Maass, Edgar Jennings, John Dubos, Rene White, Nelia McDermott, Thomas McKenney, Ruth Dark, Eleanor Annixter, Paul Lowell, Juliet Hall, Geoffrey

The Pink House (IV) Certainly, I’m a Catholic (1) Love Story (IIb)

Storm of Time (1) Swiftwater (1)

Dear Hollywood (IIb)

The End Is Known (Ila)

186

the deep spirituality of the 1

fer pati and to re bel

suffering is worst; and—a

i em with the Irish il s Tri sh Rose could do—

allies within the Jewish

1: ausaster.

It is, indeed, this love of

the pages of the Archive rather con ae of intra-ghetto polit too much for the average reader and shibboleths hard to ke archival en

large number, complicate, | the reader; though t reality to the device.

tries, and cross- and

bie vast amount of

‘mbedded in the pages wil attractive to those of Jewis oe will get from The

ion of the ability of the spirit i, and of the permanence sense of humor, personal brav the race. By some reviewers undoubtedly, be compared to I think, the great universality of is an important piece of war writ sound throughout.

D. Bernard Theall, Department of Libra

Catholic l Inia ersit Washington 17,

*

Considine, Bob Dutton. Feb. 28, 1950. 208; Mr. Considine is nationally columnist and reporter-at-large; lraws an income comfortable enou; is wife, and three vigorous {partment in the upper-brac! lis woes and worries as fath more or less complicated by are others’ of lower income count of his familial tribulations, suffer from the intrusion of budget: the casual mention of the multiplicity sters own and neglect may ca

envy in fond parents among his reader

dine takes his income for granted;; he telling about his boys.

Of an occasional Sunday, reported doings of the C been amplified, recast, and a bookful of comment on th parenthood, and on the n

from sucking infant to sixth-gr

is a full quota of laughs

incidents and by a ski

rences. Father is in

contradiction, but of comp!

D-Ray Distinegrator Gun;

of the child’s first days in kine , first lessons in civilization by cut Zone.

Hersey Considine Maass

and strains as he strives encase uncooperative the multiple paraphernalia of snow. important-for-future-generation re.

television on toddlers; on experi-

Roy Rogers and suchlike two

] 1 1

eer abel, “Hi-yo-yo on a Long

parents, will relish Inno.

te their Own

> | IS 00d

World and Paradise 1950. 405p. $3.50. ank profanity and its noxious slurs members, World and Paradis. in the manner of the elongated, yrical ra abble rouser, but falls miserably objectively examining its professed subject, gg ra a Var. Mixing the intrigues of flirtat hs carnage Py the battlefield, and the sensitive fuse religious disquietude requires an alchemist far above author Maass’ faculties to succeed. He is, in adc lition, notoriously wont to ride roughshod over whatever patent obstacles happen to aed in the ry’s getting on.

]

idliners in the cast of bloodless make-believe char-

ible minx wad ¢ camp follower named

ating Catholic nobleman, Count Karl

arrach; the inevitable sgoorgel and Richelieu

Chevalier de Poiron; and an out of order

1in monk, Father Patricius, ie carries the

relief. All of them, it might a noted, are

bysmal thick-headedness and monotonous

—as is also the case of Prince

pictured here as a mystic and adventurer

etually wrenched between the mundane wisdom “xpediency and the dictates of conscience.

Through the pages the swirl of warfare pounds devas

ingly past the capital doors of middle Europe, with

Rosanna and Karl always meeting opportunely in the

heat of . But religious and patric ‘tic factions divide

them, and Rosanna is swept willy-nilly into the arms

f the conniving Chevalier.

ey = aes ¢ Iowever, Mr. Maass seems to regret th is first decision,

ind with the presumed slaughter of Poiron at Eger, iffords Karl a second chance with the lady. He

BEST SELLERS issued by the Library, University

of Scranton, Scranton, Pennsylvania Subscription price, $2.50; Single Copies, 15 Cents; Canadian and Foreign, $3.00. Entered as second class matter, April 16, 1943, at the post office at Scranton, Pennsylvania, under the act of March 3, 1879. Copyright, 1950, by the University of Scran- ton. Indexed in the Catholic Periodical Index.

Symbols of Classification: I. Suitable for General Reading. II. Adults Only, because of: A. Advanced Content and Style; B. Immoral Language or Incidents. III. Permissible for Discriminating Adults. IV. Not Recommended to Any Class of Reader.

Best SELLER;

MaRCH

claims | Christi< Jenstein bountii results and, ul mously Friar T solutiol who d divorce forthwi commu

A luml

Jennin Double« When indentt for pas indent pursuit Joshua her tra only aj numer

himsel Thoug chance wealth Barney on the and sl Kenny actual] inactiv

ST SELLER:

‘ooperative of snow. ration re. on experi hlike two. on a Lone

lish Inno. their OWn

it 1 it 1s f00d

Paradise

ious | slurs | Para dise elongated miserably bject, the flirtatior ve fuse of far above adc litic yn,

\ whatever

iy of the

eve char- er named unt Karl Richelieu of order rries the ted, are notonous f Prince lventurer wisdom

Is devas pe, with y in the is divid he arms

decision, at Eger, He pro-

versity lvania

Dents; econd ice at ch 3,

Ms scran-

-neral anced dents.

Not

MarcH 1, 1950

vhere, in a qualm of

claims his passion at Nuremberg,

Christian repentance following the defeat of the Wal- 1

lensteiners, Rosanna has established herself as madame bountiful to the city’s refugees. Momentary confusion results leon the Chevalier tur ‘ry much ali and, under the impression iI id, |

m<¢ a! W edded to Karl’s sis

Friar Father Patricius t

sa by declaring, “May a

who disturbs their happiness! divorce and the marriage before forthwith blesses th communion with botl

uck smile,

A pommering vehic investigati n of Worl | and 'P

on any count.

lowa

The Sea Eagles

Jennings, John I $3.00.

Doubleday. Feb. 299p.

16, 1950. oc ; lad inadvertently

co was signing a note

When a young Sassenach-hating indentured himself in belief that

for passage to America, an American sailor bought his indenture with money raised by an Irish trollop in the pursuit of her profession. Of the three—Kenny Boyle, Joshua Barney and Moira—the third separated to ply her trade throughout the British Navy and and only appears for a brief instant to aid in one of Joshua’s numerous escapes. Her main excuse, not

ented by the author but accepted by him as wel that Kenny is too good to be hampere stripe. Arrived America Kenny the latter’s home at Baltimore wher give Kenny his freedom. Kenny ref himself to fall in love with Joshua’s si

Though Kenny chance to buy wealth that should lead to re Barney in the fledgling American Navy on the book is a story rages and chases, and skirmishes, captures an

Kenny move through all naval actually spend almost as much inactive as they do on active duty.

Army

yearned for the pri

his freedom as well as d position,

and from then battle escapes.

scenes of the

time, as prisoners, Thougl

h each loves

HEADLINERS

Book and Classification Author and Review

The Parasite S (IV) 5 s Cavalier (I) Egyptian (IIb)

sae Hill (1)

du Maurier Jan. Shellabarger Jan. Waltari Sept. Goudge Jan. Mary (IV) Asch Nov. A Rage to Live ong O’Hara Aug. The Horse’s Mouth (IIb) Cary Feb. One on the House (IIb ) Lasswell Feb. The Way West (Ila) Guthrie Oct. Wom an of Rome (III) Moravia

This | Remember (Ila) Roosevelt

The Mature Mind (IIL) Overstreet

My Three Years in Moscow (Ila) Smith

The Peabody Sisters of Salem (1) Tharp fodern Arms and Free Men (Ila) Bush

The Wooden Horse (Ila) Williams

~ Wana Ue

—~ he eee | ee

Jennings Dubos 187

the other, enny and Barbary strike sparks and it takes Kenny’s mutilation and his subsequent recovery, during and after the fight of the Bonhomme Richard and the ing them together. But victory on the sea

ry on land and the two couples faced

he brave young new republic

romance of colonial

poorly and awkwardly

tory and of matters naval

also scanty and insufficient.

iters especially are all too briefly described ng submitted to plot. Moira is an ob- -haracter and a bit too much space is de- liz sex with a bit too

In general the book

below the level

( mmercialization of of her noble: ess. “=? a

adults but is definitely

ree |

eariler WOrks.

* + *

Dubos, Rene J. Louis Pasteur, Free Lance of Science Feb. 2, 1950. 418p. $5.00. . fellow Frenchman and a fellow scientist, Dr. h 1as Written a book for the so-called “average” one of the truly great men of the ages. Seldom does become unduly technical, although it is fortunate that the author did not include a bit more scientific terms, even though such have been relegated to footnotes. In rteen chapters he makes understandable the con- ibutions made by Pasteur to such problems as the pos- of spontaneous generation, the germ theory of >, mechanisms of contagion and disease, and im- munity and vaccination. Although a chemist and not Pasteur devoted much of his life to the -radicati of disease and the lessening of human iffering. Frequently he had to fight bitterly with dical practitioners, who gave up very slowly many yns then currently held.

ne musconceptic

I Brown. Dubos

rea d er

‘mation about

rial might

a poysician,

enerally known that Pasteur did much to last the pc pul rly held conception that spontaneous possible, it is interesting to note that career, he evidently believed such development possible. He apparently entertained the belief that life could come from non-life during the years he spent teaching at Strasbourg and at Lille, but by the time he returned to Paris in 1857 he was evi- dently prepared to prove that spontaneous generation was scientifically impossible. One is impressed at the practical aspects of his work, when we follow his work for the period 1865-1869 when he tried to lessen the effects of the silkworm epidemic in southern France. One of his letters written in 1865, upon the death of his father, is weighted with the solidity of the Catholic principles which guided his life. This attitude sus- tained him during his illness in 1868 when his left arm and leg were partly paralyzed. After his illness, he seemed ti come even more productive. During the | 1873-1888, he, more than any other scientist, proved the germ theory of disease and developed the

chniques of immunization (pp. 48-49); in 1881 he vaceinated and saved sheep from dying from anthrax; in 1885 he vaccinated two boys and probably saved them from contracting rabies. Meanwhile, he kept in

Since ns is g 1 i

generation was early in hi ]

s research

] be

1OC

188

touch with List ter in England and with Koch in Ger- many, each of whom was also advancing the frontier of medical and scientific knowledge. It was very diffi- cols to convince physicians that bacteria cause disease. Even though the phy » admit, after using the microscope, that bacteria were present in the blood and tissues of *rsons, these same doc- tors maintained that the bacteria were a result and not a cause of disease. Even the redoubtable Fl rence Nightingale ridiculed the idea that there were specific

bluntly: “There are no specific itions” (p. 249 ).

pt

sicians were forced t

diseased pe

1;

diseases. She said

dise ases; there are specific disease Col She maintained that bad livi ng conditions could duce any disease; in effect she argued that no diseases could occur in an area which was sanitary. Typhoid fever and typhus were to her simply two phases of the same illness; neither could appear in clean, well ventilated quarters. It was against such ignorance that Pasteur had to carry on an uphill fight. When he accused the doctors who were

ending women in maternity of hospitals of carrying puerperal fever by their unclean hands from one patient tl doctors were highly insulted,

to another, the but eventually Pasteur proved to them that he was ; right (po; Z6Z).

It is indeed fitting that such a book should appear at this time. The leading scientists of the world now seem unfortunately to be committed, by actions of their re- spective governments, to the destruction of civilization as we know it. It is at least comforting to know that a great scientist who lived from 1822 to 1895 was com- mitted to the practice of saving life rather than de- stroying it, and to the religious belief that God wanted men to live together in peace rather than to the secular commandment of today that we must destroy ourselves, if necessary, in order to kill anyone who disagrees with us. The science of today is as destructive as that of Pasteur’s day was constructive. Which do you prefer? Paul Kiniery, Ph.D., Loyola Unia ersity, Chicago, Illinois

= * *

White, Nelia G. The Pink House

Viking. 3111p. $3.00.

The Pink House is an odd book. air of unreality about the scenes, the characters, and the intertwined plots. The title rather suggests that there is a house with a personality strong enough to influence its inhabitants; the title is misleading and does not fulfill its promise. The story, or rather the stories, are trivial and ill defined: The characters do not act, they drift.

The novel is concerned with John Dickinson and his wife Rose, their four children, John’s sister, Poll, and a crippled niece, Norah Holme. This last is the narrator, part spectator and part participant in the tale. In the course of the story, the crippled niece is received into the Pink House and is resented and mistreated by her Aunt Rose and the four children. Her only friend is Poll who becomes her tutor and confidant. Rose Dick- inson is the evil influence in the story but the latent malice in her seems never to crystallize. She despises her husband, resents her children, indulges in ‘mild flirtations, rather serious thievery, and finally, on a presumably solitary tour through Europe, divorces her

There is a curious

White McDermott McKenney

Best SELLER; husband and marries a titled Britisher. The authores would have it that the malignancy of this woman warps and seriously impairs the spiritual and moral outlook of the family. pees ewer for the novel, this impression does not come through the gen. eral confusion. The dominating ann Poll, is perhaps the only chars that Nelia White de

pletely. She is interesting, believable, and thoroughly enjoyable.

entire

wiliade velops com.

It is regettable t! iat in order to arrive at a solution or untangling of the threads of the story, the authoress has to depend on two divorces a1 iree Marriages, More than thi . divorce is taken as the natural way of settling marital difficulties. This last turn transforms he boo k from one that is neutral, or at best mildly

one that cannot be recommended.

William Noé Field,

ae Hall College,

South Orange, N. J.

* * *

t t

interesting, into

Certainly, I’m a Catholic 154p. $2.50. This book is a statement of ton attorney, whose avocation writing, and who al- ready has to his credit a biography of Pius XII. His standpoint is that of a busy professional man, educated nearly entirely in Catholic schools, now carving out a successful career in the world. He understands wel certain dr: awbé acks to his religion in the world of affairs, where he observes that Masons or Episcopalians seem to fare best. It is partly in answer to these and other persons of different views, and pat rtly to satisfy his own questioning mind that Mr. McDermott has set dow: this brief and practical summary of his reasons for stay- ing Catholic despite its social and economic disad- vantages. Such a book is timely and objectiv e, touching on every- day matters such as patriotism, sex and social relations, science, the Index, idecslinn. and democracy. It is easy to read and accurate, being the product of a legal mind. It is not a systematic treatise, makes no pretense to profundity or scholarship (there are very few notes or references), and touches but lightly on the interior aspect of religion. Its appeal is directly to the ordinary busy layman who hasn’t had the time or training to give much consideration to the difficulties of his re ligion. Among non-Catholics the book should do good work, for it is sympathetic and straight-forward. There is, however, nothing of special interest for the student, scholar, or priest, who will know most of what is in it. Nevertheless, since the battle of books is on, what with Mr. Blanchard and his ilk, this little work ought to be a useful piece of artillery in parishes and among lay apostles since it gives timely answers to the many ques tions that will be thrown up by inquirers, friendly and otherwise.

McDermott, Thomas Bruce. Feb. 15, 1950.

faith by a young Washing.

Dom Bruno McAndrew, st. Anselm’s Priory, Washington 17, D. C. ~* a + McKenney, Ruth Harcourt, Brace. Feb. 10, 1950. 303p.

Another autobiographical work from Columbus, Ohio, girl, who had New

Love Story $3.00. the pen of the Yorker readers

—120, wil later some

ness’,

toe be 1 Kenne an ear life are are Ci\ The f capto r misera supren suburk style t a few

of a ©

an

o

Scr

a7)

fun it thinks princi} have < grace ge

Dark Whitt This

that

hund seem: toma size | nine more ancil

© authores iS Woman and moral ‘ly for the h the gen. is perhaps ‘LOPS Com. thoroughly

olution or authoress Marriages, ral way of transforms est mildly nded. ield, lege,

N. J.

Catholic Washing-

| who al- XII. His educated ing out a inds well of affairs, ans seem nd other his own et down for stay- ic disad-

N every- ‘elations, y. It is f a legal pretense Ww notes interior ordinary ining to his re- do good

There student, is in it. 1at with 1t to be ong lay 1y ques- dly and

rew,

2 Story

of the readers

ST SELLER

MarcH 1, 1950

(and subsequently playgoers) laughing a decade or so ago, with her stories about her sister Eileen; and whose la violent grandfather less fascinating. The present vo ‘lume has 1 Ruth’s brief and violent courtship by a young Masses, and with the subsequent life, dozen

ater reminiscences of a seemed somewhat to do wit

editor of the Neu vicissitudes of married

over a period of a

years Or SO. It has always seemed rather sad that a writer of Miss ey’s talents should have spent so large a part

of her re al » much ink, in the yf those parts

cause

of the labor movement which are, to say the best of them, very, very, very far to the left, and that she and her husband sho a i have spent so large a part of their

1 life in fanat

then, a

married ical 1 devotion to bad causes. Leftist labor sales up, rather goodly share of these reminiscences, and there is throughout a too shrill in- sistence on the beauty of being emancipated socially and free from most "of convention’s trammels. At their wedding, both were dete rmined not to have any of “this ‘Dearly Beloved, to Have and to Hold’ busi-

ness”, and the account of the wedding, “while meant te be funny, is a rather good commentary on the Mc- Kenney attitude toward religion. (Mike had just shed

an earlier wife, whose turnings-up in their subsequent life are described in great detail—but then, such things are ceiees. ) The fac though, that Ruth captor of ie moment which is, miserable, but is afterward, and as supremely funny. There is an suburban barbecue in the genuine “My-Sister-Eileen” style that is worth all the rest of the book. There are a few other such gems, but mainly this is an account of a desperately unconve ntional married life, with a insistence throughout on how much

screamingly shrill i

fun it has all been, and with what Ruth McKenney thinks of, I am sure, as a brave declaration of conjugal principles at the end, to the effect that “if Mike and I have a life rich and varied, we must endure with what grace we can the pain we have suffered between our goodly joys. We are too passionate and too blunder- ing, to inhabit any safe and comfortable plateaus”. It all depends on what one calls “richness” in married life—or in any life.

The book is quite harmless for adult reading, and much in it will amuse, but it is a really rather frightening exhibition of paganism among the middle classes.

D. Bernard Theall, Department of Library Science, Catholic University of America,

W ‘ashineton 7. D. is

hts

* * *

McKenney is a fine as it passes, supremely McKenn 1ey- -related, account here of a

Dark, Eleanor

Whittlesey House.

Storm of Time

Jan. 30, 1950. $3.50.

This is, probably, the biggest bargain in print-per-penny

590p.

that has been published in many moons. The six- hundred-less-ten pages are closely printed in what seems a smaller-than-usual type with less-than-cus-

tomary margin, and would easily make three ordinary- size novels. It also covers, rather thoroughly, some nine years of the early history of Australia, involving more characters and plots, sub-plots, peripheral and ancillary stories than a reviewer can count or recount

Dark Annixter

189

briefly. Yet it all adds up to a continually interesting sometimes exciting historical novel that is much more history than novel, for all that many of its people are fictitious, valid creations of the author’s invention. The scope of the work is big, and this reviewer agrees, with- out cavil, to the Introductory estimate historian Allan Nevins gives to the completed work. Mr. Nevins has also neatly summarized the content of

follows:

“Tt is a story full of violence, cruelty, greed, and poli- tical intrigue, lighted by episodes of heroism, sacrifice, and devotion to public aims. The author

; the book as

self-

writes with convincing vividness of convicts of high lineage and low, and their brutal maltreatment; of the efforts of scheming men to monopolize land, reduce

independent settlers to serfdom, and exterminate the natives; of revolts savagely led and still more savagely quelled; and, most important of all, of the grim, endless

and the civil gov- dominate

feud between the military garrison ernors. Two men of exceptional ]

Stature

much of the tale: the shrewd, cold, insatiably ambi- tious Captain Macarthur, and his opponent, one driving Governor Bligh of Bounty fame, duelists whose battle

shakes the young colony. the weak outer settlements, ness, the tenuous links with with sure economy of stroke.” However, I found myself far more interested in the ultimate fate of the or convict Finn, and the red- haired runaway bush-boy, Jonny, who tried to establish a safe refuge for other runaway penal victims, remote from the expanding colony; am he than in the higher- level historical struggle of Governor Bligh and “Jack Bodice” Macarthur. The latter of these two con- testants appears through the first and last thirds of the book, but oddly never comes to life as a : deee dimen- sional person. Possibly this is because he is one of the “real” historical figures. Whereas Stephen Mannion, the fictional, insufferably arrogant, independent planter looms dark over half the pages with a menace that is tangible; and his young wife, Conor, is also exception- ally well-drawn, credible and immensely sympathetic. The struggles of Bligh’s predecessor, Governor King, are equally important with Bligh’s although they end less tragically, yet more pathetically. It is something of a shock to notice that Miss Dark has authored five previous novels, (among them The Time- less Land, which was a Book-of-the-Month selection when published here), because Storm of Time is al- most, if I may be pardoned the banality, a down-under Gone With the Wind. Throughout the entire book, Miss Dark’s love of her native Australia glows like a proud lantern; and her sympathies are wide and just. There is no reason why Storm of Time need be neg- lected by any reader who likes action, plenty of it, and a lot of reading for the price of purchases.

R. F. Grady, S.J., Ph.D.,

University of Scranton

FAMILY READING CLUB—FEBRUARY SELECTION

The infant city of Sydi ney, il

the immense silent wilder-

England,

are described

Annixter, Paul Swiftwater

A. A- Wyn. Jan. 18, 1950.

Adventure in the wilds of the Maine wi oods provides source material for this story of a trapper’s life, of his

256p. $2.50.

190 Lowell Hall

dependency on the beneficence of nature to provide a simple livelihood for his family. : The blood of the MicMacs flowed in his veins and Cam Calloway knew the bush and the habits of its four-footed residents with a knowledge unique in the wwiftwater region. It seemed as if Bucky possessed the ht as he joined his father in setting the

same rare insight winter trap lines for the first time.

A weakness for a nip too much at times, his obvious inability to acquire material wealth, and the simplicity of his ways as he sought the forest in preference to their company had won for Cam the antagoriism of the Swiftwaterites. But the Calloways were reasonably happy in their log cabin, as happy as people who are sometimes hungry for food or friends can expect to be. Bucky nursed a deep admiration for his father; he shared Cam’s love for the forest creatures and promised to be as canny a woodsman. Like Cam, he experienced an almost spiritual affinity to the wild geese as they planed over the Maine woods twice yearly in their migratory journeys. The two deplored the loss of life as huntsmen leveled the valiant birds in flight, and the main theme of the novel centres on their efforts to provide a sanctuary for them.

Bucky’s rapid development from boyhood to man’s estate occurs when Cam, in the act of setting his traps, fractures a leg thus necessitating a lengthy convales- cence. Going over the trap line alone, the boy con- quers fear as he stalks a wolverine that has been pil- laging the catch to its winter lair where, in a tense battle, he kills the beast. Suspense ranks high through- out the story and reaches a maximum when old Fire Eyes, a lynx, is done to death by Keg, the Calloways’ amusing pet bear. Conflict creeps in as the inevitable city promoter, Fraser, attempts to take advantage of the father and son in their honest efforts to build up the bird sanc- tuary. It is a dramatic moment when the gander, en route north, settles his flock on the lake near the trapper’s cornfield, but a bitter one when Fraser’s friends fire at the unsuspecting birds for the sheer de- light of killing. Cam’s heroic effort to scatter the flock, an easy prey on the water, costs him his life as a gun volley cuts him down. By some instinct, the geese persist in remaining and the sanctuary is finally assured proper support with Bucky installed to carry on Cam’s work. Characterization is well established here with the stress on man’s nobler traits. Ma Calloway is entirely human in her longing for a fur cape; Cam and Bucky, in their conspiracy to provide it, are equally engaging. Viney, Bucky’s sister, is almost too young to figure dramatically in the tale but Bridie Mellott his one-time schoolmate contributes to the plot in a mildly romantic angle. Some criticism might be directed at the time element. One has almost decided that Cam lived and died dur- ing the heyday of the Hudson’s Bay Company when direct allusion to modern methods of travel and stream- lined living brings one up to date. This is a simple, unobjectionable story fit for all to read and boys espe- cially should find it to their taste.

Rosemary McCormick,

Toronto, Canada

BesT SELLER;

Dear Hollywood 96p. $1.00.

Lowell, Juliet

Duell, Sloan & Pearce. Jan. 27, 1950. Juliet Lowell has coined a pretty penny out of othe peoples’ not-so-literary and unintentionally humoroy; epistolary efforts. Where collections have been drawn from letters to government agencies and t congressmen the present series have been coll from Hollywood but, in spite of Hollywood’s repute. tion, are scarcely zanier than those from other sources, Letters to movie stars, to restaurants, to radio stations department stores, beauty consultants and newspaper columnists make up the bulk of the book. A few are funny, some are objectionable as are many of the accompanying illustrations. Suggestive allusions and double-entendre are frequent. Although the book will not injure adults there is no reason to recommend jt

either for style or content.

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*

Hall, Geoffrey Holiday

Simon & Schuster. Dec. 9,

The End Is Known

1949. $2.00. (Inner

248p.

Sanctum Mystery).

The publishers say this is a first novel. It is a good one. Though the opening situation which motivates and directs the subsequent action is a fairly common one, the twists the plot takes are ingenious, the pace never falters, the suspense never sags, and the conclu. sion is bang-up.

When a stranger threw himself from the apartment window of Bayard Paulton, middle-aged department store executive, his wife reported that she had thought him one of the store’s employees when he said that only Mr. Paulton could help him. In the hope that his aid might still be of service to the dead man, Paul- ton made contact with three individuals who had known him in life.

There was Crazy Jessie Dermont who came from Mon- tana to take the body back for burial. She said the suicide had stopped at her restaurant one day and been persuaded to stay the winter. And there was “The Greatest Brain in the World” who had known the dead man at a subarctic camp during the war. Helen Marr had known both him and his wife, greedy, cheating Peggy Landowski, at a Maine airfield. But all had lost touch with him years before. None of them—and certainly not Mr. Paulton—anticipated how nearly the tragedy in the victim’s life would touch the businessman’s life. The author is a good reporter—the scenes of his novel come alive through one or two descriptive touches which the reader recognizes or considers illuminating. The characters are well-conceived and plausible, with rather more depth than one customarily finds in a mystery story. While the murderer is exaggerated for the effect the author wishes to achieve, the others are well typed and convincing. Plot development is smooth: the necessary pegs on which the plot hangs are in their proper place, unobtrusive and credible. Only the bitter taste in the author’s mouth seems a bit young and raw. Helen L. Butler, Ph.D., Department of Librarianship, Marywood College, Scranton, Pennsylvania

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