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death, the woman question, labor, and other subjects of vital concern to both of them. Suffering from organic disease and a mental condition bordering at times on melancholia, she was accustomed to describe her sensations at great length, and it is unfortunate that her husband, in preparing these letters for publication, did not delete many of these passages along with other intimate sections which are withheld. They are all similar in tone, and the constant repetition and reiteration of the same facts is tiresome in the extreme. this one exception the reader hesitates to skip even a few lines. In practically every letter Olive Schreiner has something to say, and she says it with such conviction that one is neither surprised that she styled herself a "freethinker" nor doubts that she fully justified the implications of the term.
Under the title "Songs and Laughter" (Harper) three bright orange jacketed volumes of Arthur Guiterman's light verse are now boxed together in a uniform edition. They are "The Laughing Muse", "The Mirthful Lyre", and "The Light Guitar". Of these the last named, and the latest to be written, is perhaps the best all round book of light verse of the three. It ranges from the riotous cavortings of burlesque to a gently humorous, gently satirical attitude reminiscent of Lovelace and Herrick. Some of the shorter pieces are tinged with a fine, if somewhat deprecatory, spirit of melancholy-such gentle sadness as only the wearer of cap and bells can elicit. They are perhaps not typical of the consistently witty and facile talent that shapes most of Mr. Guiterman's verse, but they show a poetic richness that bears out the theory that writers of light verse as truly measure the temper of the times as their more serious colleagues. It
requires, certainly, a fine measure of restraint and understanding to regard the world's follies and to laugh at them with the pure laughter of the mind and the heart, untainted by malice.
Grubbing through dusty newspaper files to resurrect the hackwork of an artist is too often a work of supererogation for which there is, quite rightly, no reward in heaven. But Albert Mordell has reversed the rule in compiling "An American Miscellany" (Dodd, Mead). These two volumes of Lafcadio Hearn's forgotten articles can easily stand comparison with his later work. The editor has followed Hearn's restless journalistic trail through the columns of Cincinnati and New Orleans newspapers of the Seventies and early Eighties—in itself no despicable chore, considering the dismal journalese of those days. No lover of Hearn will doubt the authenticity of these papers nor accuse the editor of misdirected energy in reprinting them. Mr. Mordell states that Hearn's Japanese books repeat his earlier method, and this is unquestionably true. The wonder is, however, that in the exhausting toil of a newspaper man he was able to turn out from week to week such beautifully finished writing, such sensuous Arctic landscape and tropical seascape, and such hideous excursions into the macabre. Through all these selections there runs the thread of his strange erudition and bizarre research. He writes of such matters as serpent worship, Greek courtezans, Renaissance poisoners, Creole philology, Gustave Doré's illustrations, and Baudelaire's translations from Poe.
Charles J. Finger would have us believe that "Bushrangers" (McBride) is largely historical, and we are willing
to concede to his wishes in so far as the bald facts are concerned. But there are things more indicative than facts: Mr. Finger has taken these sordid details merely to guide him to the heart of the bushrangers, so that he may become one of them. And we are perfectly willing to whisper to Mr. Finger that we like his tales about as well as anything we have seen since the golden days of "Treasure Island", for he has given us some romantic moments with his rough, ragged gallants.
One way to learn about the United States is to study the reports of the Census Bureau and another way is to read "These United States" (Boni, Liveright). The first method is amusing enough, but the average person seems to have no taste for that sort of thing; so he will read Ernest Gruening's two volume compilation and snicker or grow angry over the chapter on his own state, according to his temperament. In Volume II, now published, there are twenty two states and four territories described. Somehow these chapters seems less superficially clever than those of the first volume. Not that they lack brilliance. Yet despite all their scintillating analysis they make it evident that Ohio and California are far more difficult to differentiate than Normandy and Gascony, than Bavaria and Hanover. That difficulty is a fortunate one, however, for it has produced some thoughtful writing as well as sparkling comparisons. It would have been a splendid idea to illustrate these two volumes with pictures of the state capitols - but Mr. Gruening might have felt that this architectural commentary was too derisive.
On seeing "Great Detective Stories" (Dial) anyone skeptical of their great
ness has only to turn to the table of contents and notice the writers included. Four of the five are Voltaire, Balzac, Dumas, and Poe. The fifth, by comparison almost unknown, is Vidocq; but the passage chosen from his memoirs is very likely, for the seasoned reader of detective stories, the most welcome thing in the book. The other selections, save for Balzac's "Devil's Disciple", are old hat. At the same time, those who have not read them will find them excellent. Attractively put together, this volume is the first of three which, following a chronological plan, will end with Stevenson.
Certainly few people can be so well equipped to interpret the enigmatic personality of Lenin as his former lieutenant, coadjutor, and sometimes opponent, Leon Trotzky. But not very much that is newly enlightening emerges from Trotzky's book of reminiscences and sketches they are no more entitled "Lenin" (Minton, Balch), though it is an interesting volume which will doubtless be of value to the future historian. Trotzky himself disclaims any idea of making a biography or an exposition of Lenin's "views or methods of action". The book consists of recollections of his first meeting with Lenin, in London in 1903, during the "formative period" of Bolshevism, and of phases of the "decisive year" of the Revolution, from the autumn of 1917 to that of 1918. Added to these are several incidental papers, republished from periodicals. Trotzky does give some illuminating flashlights of the man: none more so than the incident of his introduction of Trotzky to "their" Westminster Abbey, of which the author explains: "The 'their' meant not the English, but the enemy", a meaning which was
Anything that tends to strengthen the growing popular opinion in favor of settlement of international disputes by some rational process of arbitration instead of by war is, no doubt, of value. Whatever one may think of the possibility of the "outlawry of war" (the phrase is a manifest ineptitude, involving loose, incorrect use of language) it is desirable to understand the attempts that have been made in that direction. "Security Against War" (Macmillan) by Frances Kellor, with Antonia Hatvany as collaborator, is a useful outline sketch of the various controversies that have kept Europe in turmoil since the formation of the League of Nations and the establishment of its Court, though the book needs to be used with some caution. It is also interesting as an analysis and discussion of the "machinery of peace" and of the international courts. Perhaps the best chapter is that dealing with the two Hague Courts, which brings out clearly and correctly the essential differences between the older Hague tribunal, created on a sound basis of juridical theory, and not attempting to do the impossible, and the Court created as a byproduct of the war and controlled by the League.
"Colombia, Land of Miracles", by Blair Niles (Century), is very much more than a mere travel book. But then Mrs. Niles herself is so very much more than a mere traveler. She is a lover, not alone of places and of brave adventure, but of humanity and human
motives also. motives also. A lover, too, of beautiful, poetic words in which to frame impressions. Her new book is a volume to be set down, at the last word, with a sigh of regret. The Colombia of which she tells is a land of miracles indeed, where ultramodern aeroplanes fly matter-of-factly over villages that seem to have progressed not one whit from the mediæval; where proud history has its shrine along with the saints; where progress marches shoulder to shoulder with age-old custom. An infant land, in spite of its tale of years; precocious, even advanced in many things, but an infant all the same. The book is most attractively illustrated with photographs taken on the spur of the moment, as it were, so that they render the book all the more pleasing - by Robert L. Niles, Jr.
The one quality which the anthologist should possess above all others is the faculty of selection, the ability to discriminate between that which is second rate and mediocre and that which bears the hallmark of perennial interest. It is precisely in this quality that L. A. G. Strong is most deficient. His collection of "The Best Poems of 1924" (Small, Maynard) contains many selections of imagination, beauty, and technical excellence by poets known and unknown; but it likewise abounds in selections of no excellence whatever by poets equally known and unknown. The compiler seems to have no definite and clear cut conception as to what constitutes poetry; he appears to be lacking in that sense of exclusion which is quite as important in an anthologist as the sense of inclusion; consequently, the reader is annoyed at finding the most exquisite and richly poetic expressions placed side by side with those that are most prosaic, raucous, and tawdry.
THE BOOKMAN'S MONTHLY SCORE
Compiled by Frank Parker Stockbridge, Life Member of the American Library Association, in Cooperation with the Public Libraries of America
"When the photoplay of 'So Big' was shown here it was impossible to fill the requests for the book; the waiting list ran into the hundreds", writes a middle west librarian. It is an interesting circle. A book jumps into popularity and immediately that popularity is capitalized by the movie people, who rely upon the book's popularity to advertise the film. Then the book publishers follow up the film with the book, relying on the popularity of the film to sell more books. During the showing of the film version of "Notre Dame" the writer overheard a conversation something like this: 'D'ja hear they'd made a book from this picksher? Joe got it out o' the lib'ry." Gee! That so? Is it any good?"
Naw. Joe said 'tain't anything like the picksher. that can't write English very good."
Some Frenchman done it
"So Big" and "The Thundering Herd" are the only books in the current score that have been shown on the screen as yet, but it was the writer's privilege to witness the filming of the opening scenes of "The Little French Girl". Which is about all that seems to call for comment in the March list. The three new titles, particularly Mr. Bok's latest, were inevitable. - F. P. S.
6. Life and Letters of Walter H. Page Burton J. Hendrick
FUNK & WAGNALLS
Maurice Francis Egan
H. G. Wells
* This title has not before appeared in the Monthly Score.
THE SEVEN SEAS
War Memoirs-Dostoyevsky - The Loeb Library-Chronique Scandaleuse-Gobineau-Light on Modern Spain - Historical Discoveries— Nitti-Compulsory English in China - An Aviation Yearbook· Royal Love Letters - English and American Books Translated— Balzac
HE memoirs of M. Poincaré are now in preparation. I hear that it has taken the French ex-Premier some little time to make up his mind what form his reminiscences should take. Like all statesmen who have played an important part in international affairs at a critical period of history, he finds himself confronted with the difficulty of condensing the experiences of twelve years into two volumes. Only the practical objections of publishers have induced him to abandon his original intention to publish two volumes a year over a period of five years, ten volumes in all! It is not certain even now that he will consent to the compression of his experiences into two volumes.
The publication of the second volume of Admiral von Tirpitz's new war book is likely to be delayed, owing to opposition on the part of the left parties of the Reichstag. This volume ought to make interesting reading, dealing as it does with the fateful days of July, 1914, onward. Some startling extracts from von Tirpitz's diaries are promised, which shed a new light on the Berlin-Vienna relations during the crisis. The political opposition caused by news of the second volume has invested the book with an unusually high degree of interest, at any rate in Germany. The first volume, which is yet to be published in England and
America, sold 17,000 copies from November 3 to December 7 last year. These figures will surprise many who are of the opinion that war books are dead.
Arnold Bennett, recently interviewed in London by a French journalist on the subject of André Gide's "Dostoyevsky: Essays and Addresses", made this interesting pronouncement:
I must confess to you that Gide seems to me an essayist born, not a novelist. And his masterpiece might well be this Dostoyevsky, which is truly a great book. Gide is above all things an intellect. Moreover, his studies of Dostoyevsky may be regarded as the Confessions of André Gide. Viewed in this light, they give a record of supreme importance.
"Dostoyevsky" contains a remarkable self portrait as revealed in his letters, an illuminating survey of his moral, religious, and political beliefs, and an appreciation of Dostoyevsky's masterpiece, "The Brothers Karamazov". An address read at the celebration of his centenary emphasizes the need for revision of our estimate of the great Russian novelist and of measuring his worth by standards unfamiliar to western criticism. But perhaps the most interesting part of the book is André Gide's sketch of Dostoyevsky's life up to his banishment to Siberia; the influence of the years of prison on his mind and genius; his study of the