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THE MONTH ON MURRAY HILL
bomb had burst before the glass and the image of the explosion remained."
Henry Beston, who is preparing other adventures in his BOOK OF GALLANT VAGABONDS, read that passage and would, no doubt, have slapped his thigh if gestures were not foreign to so huge a man. From that point he and I started all over the world together for an hour, while I discovered two places where he had never been; and Murray Hill and the rattle of riveters fell away to valleys and the song of locusts, and once a machine gun. Manuscripts moved past going home, the newspapers accumulated, and adding machines made out royalty statements for June while we took a small boat down among the Sea Islands where DuBose Heyward's PORGY is laid (it will be out in the autumn) and climbed to the Rainbow Bridge in southern Utah.
Albert Payson Terhune, Frank L. Packard, Hulbert Footner, they all write at first hand of adventure. But sometimes it grows quite exciting even on Murray Hill.
It was two months ago that Edwin Lefevre came in to talk about his new book, THE MAKING OF A STOCKBROKER, which will be released June 22. I sat him down by me, laid his stick and hat across my desk, and asked him to tell me all about himself that I did not know. In a few minutes he knew all about me. He is a man much more interested in people than in books, and in business than in writing; which makes for ease of style and wealth of matter when he does write. For years he told of the romance of big business in the "Saturday Evening Post", and later brought out a book on Murray Hill called REMINISCENCES OF A STOCK OPERATOR. There were others too, WALL STREET STORIES, SIMONETTA and ONE IN A MILLION, all written in a style which, while neither staccato nor abrupt, carries the reader along at flying speed like a surfboard on a wave. This is probably the height of good journalism the minimizing of obstacles to the mind and eye and reminds one of Sir Philip Gibbs. must be the result of an instinct for the reader's mind, so that the things which need
explaining are explained at just the proper length, and the large words and brain-halting ideas of other men fall into easily digestible form. When I first opened the STOCKBROKER book I found myself suddenly on page forty-eight; so I closed it quickly to take home. It is one of the inexplicable traditions of a publishing house that one's reading should be done at meals and in bed, lest the office have the appearance of a club. And of course it is a bit difficult to look up from a book and tell one's secretary to do something, at least with the ring of authority.
THE MAKING OF A STOCKBROKER is the autobiography of one John Kent Wing, as told by Edwin Lefevre. John Kent Wing is a famous Wall Street broker, in the story. And the book is dedicated to one John Wing Prentiss, a famous broker of Wall Street. What are we to deduce from that? I asked Mr. Lefevre. But he was talking of something else, the reason for writing the book. It is fully set forth in the preface. The Wall Street man, like the stage Englishman, is limited in popular conception to a type curiously far from the true one. "The trouble is that the public's Wall Street is in reality an old Wall Street. It became obsolete years ago." Thus John Kent Wing. He loves his business, is prouder of its record than of its success, and denies hotly that the buccaneer of thirty years ago exists. His story is one of astonishing achievement through adventures which are true ones, and which are all on the records of the past twenty years.
I have seldom been so excited as during that first panic. Later, of course, I lost millions without turning a hair; but that fifty thousand dollars was more than I could afford then. Toward the end of the book, when I was frightfully wealthy, I thought of buying Murray Hill entire, and telling the riveters to stop.
For June publication there are several unusual novels besides THE MAKING OF A STOCKBROKER and SEIBERT OF THE ISLAND. Of the latter, by the way, Edwin Björkman has just written me: "The biggest South Sea story since Stevenson, comparing favorTHE BOOKMAN Advertiser
THE MONTH ON MURRAY HILL
ably with his EBBTIDE and THE WRECKER." By V. Sackville-West there is SEDUCERS IN ECUADOR, whose title has nothing to do with the story beyond its mystery and strange quality. Curiously I read it through (and it is a short book) until I laid it down staggered by the fact that it might be true. It is a Tale of Hoffman, boldly done, a ghoulish trick of fate and imagination. I would read it again if I did not remember every line. V. Sackville-West wrote CHALLENGE several years ago, and that one I have given to a dozen people at Christmas ever since.
Then there is THE HARP, a story of South Africa containing a mystic quality of other character, almost epic in its tale of mother and son. Ethelreda Lewis, the author, is a resident of Johannesburg, and wife of a doctor there. Hers is one of the few novels by South Africans which has reached American publication. Another was THE LITTLE Karoo, by Pauline Smith, the book of short stories about which Arnold Bennett is so tremendously enthusiastic.
Wyoming. Her new mystery novel, THE RED LAMP, has gone into manufacture for August release, which in this instance is a lengthy process, for the first edition is to be a hundred thousand copies. E. V. Lucas, essayist, art critic, is recently in from England; and once in a while comes Dan Poling, who is Dr. Daniel Poling of the Old Fort Church on Fifth Avenue, to talk about THE FURNACE, published in May. Like Ralph Connor, who is finishing TREADING THE WINEPRESS for autumn release, he has shown that a minister can write a powerful story, especially if he has been a laborer, lecturer and army chaplain.
Manuscripts eagerly awaited are coming in to Murray Hill. Hugh Walpole's PORTRAIT OF A MAN WITH RED HAIR and Frank Swinnerton's THE ELDER SISTER; Aldous Huxley's ALONG THE ROAD and Richard Blaker's "OH, THE BRAVE MUSIC!" are arriving or expected from England. RED ASHES, by Margaret Pedler, is in preparation for July and an immediate success; THE GIRL WHO CAST OUT FEAR is just in from Italy, where Dorothy Speare is making her début in grand opera, and will be brought out in the fall.
Whose novel of THE ELDER SISTER
So much has happened recently on Murray Hill. Twelve new Americans of considerable reputation have added their names to the summer and autumn publication lists: Floyd Dell, Percy MacKaye, Elsie Singmaster, Nalbro Bartley, Stephen Vincent Benet, Hervey Allen, DuBose Heyward, Edward Lucas White, Jessica C. Cosgrave, Corey Ford, Henry Beston, and Gordon Young.
Michael Arlen has returned to England, triumphant but exhausted by the demands on him here. Irvin Cobb is headed toward Montana, and Mary Roberts Rinehart is in
THE BOOKMAN Advertiser
RELIGIOUS BOOKS ON MURRAY HILL
VEN in a month which has been noteworthy for unusual religious news, the visit to this country of Professor James Moffatt has been an event. His new translation of the Old Testament has received a well deserved publicity through the religious and secular press. Many were anticipating seeing and hearing the man.
We have the habit in this country of thinking that all liberals must be fighting liberals. They must be "agin" something. They like to startle - that is a part of their stock in trade. So, many had thought of this He hasn't hesitated to use the best of scientific research in his books. Many of his words and phrases in his new translation are revolutionary.
What a surprise it must have been to many to listen to and meet this quiet, modest scholar with his courtesy of conduct and simplicity of speech. The Scotch make fine preachers for this day. They have the faculty of considering and absorbing all the benefit of higher criticism and research without sacrificing the fine ballast of piety and consecration. Liberal perhaps; but Christian leaders of the sanest type. Yes, undoubtedly, yes. And this describes Dr. Moffatt as he appeared to his friends in America.
Many of our religious leaders from abroad are well known in New York but Dr. Moffatt is welcomed to all parts of the country. Just at present he is lecturing in Texas. He writes from there that he is having a wonderful time, though he fears for his modesty and digestion.
Among things carefully preserved in this office is an envelope which will show how well known his Bible translation is. It is addressed,
Publishers of the New Testament,
Uncle Sam was well enough informed to send this where it belonged, to 244 Madison Avenue.
Criticisms of Dr. Moffatt's Old Testament are many and varied. Most of them have to
do with individual words which he has used which do not appeal to the taste of the reader. One woman, whose name is Jemima, protests because he has changed that name in the passage in Job to Ringdove. But on the whole scholars are agreed that it has been a mighty big task well done.
Mrs. Mary M. Russell, who, by the way, is at present Chief Executive of the Camp Fire Girls of Los Angeles, recently told us of the beginnings of her work in religious dramatics. It was while she was director of young peoples' work in a church in Boston. The pastor was perplexed with mid-week service problem. In order to encourage the young people to attend he suggested that she plan to put on a short Biblical drama. Imagine the surprise of the pastor and herself on that Wednesday evening to find several hundred people crowding into the room where formerly there were but a few dozen. All of Mrs. Russell's books are the result of actual productions. She believes that each drama should be very successfully produced under normal conditions before it is published.
Dan Poling's entrance into the field of fiction is watched with considerable interest. All of his other books have been of sermons or church methods. We rather think that he is enjoying the experience of reading the reviews of his first novel. "Our budding young novelist" was the way that he was introduced at a gathering a few nights ago.
Mr. Basil Matthews, secretary of the Boys' Department, World Y. M. C. A., has been among the recent callers at Murray Hill. He is the author of a number of books on the Doran lists and will soon have another one on the life of Christ. This is Mr. Matthews' first visit to America. He was bound for Estes Park, Colorado, where he will participate in a conference of Boys' Work Secretaries of the Y. M. C. A.
THE BOOKMAN Advertiser
WILLIAM H. LEACH.
THE BOOKMAN'S LITERARY CLUB SERVICE
Believing that clubs will welcome an outline which combines range of subject with an authoritative understanding of the end to be achieved, the editors have brought together representative committees of authors, students, and critics to present for the use of women's clubs an outline which will contain both elements. The divisions of the series are: I. Contemporary American Fiction (see THE BOOKMAN for October, November, December, 1922, January, 1923); II. Contemporary American Poetry (see THE BOOKMAN for March, April, May, June, July, August, 1923); III. Contemporary American Drama (see THE BOOKMAN from November, 1923 through July, 1924); IV. The Short Story. After contemporary American literature has been covered, programs on the historical background of our literature will be given and these will be followed by a survey of the English field.
The BOOKMAN programs are formed, not by the editors of this magazine but by a board of advice which has been organized to include names from various lines of literary thought in America, so that the result will represent no one group. The executive committee of advice is as follows: Mary Austin, the novelist; Dr. Arthur E. Bostwick, librarian of the St. Louis Public Library; Dr. Carl Van Doren, one of the editors of "The Century"; Mrs. L. A. Miller, chairman of literature, General Federation of Women's Clubs; May Lamberton Becker, of the "Reader's Guide" of "The Saturday Review"; Dr. Joseph Fort Newton, rector of the Church of the Divine Paternity, New York City; Booth Tarkington, the novelist; and Rose V. S. Berry, of the General Federation of Women's Clubs.
The Editor of THE BOOKMAN and his advisers and associates will answer promptly and to the best of their ability any question confronting any literary club. Such questions should be addressed "THE BOOKMAN'S Literary Club Service".
Representative American Short Stories. Alexander
The Best Short Stories of 1924, etc. Edward J.
O. Henry Memorial Award Prize Stories of 1924,
Thrice Told Tales. Blanche Colton Williams.
Short Stories by Present-Day Authors. Raymond
The Stories Editors Buy and Why. Jean Wick.
Modern Short Stories. Frederick Houk Law.
Contemporary Short Stories. Kenneth Allan
Short Story Writing for Profit. M. Joseph.
Short Story Writing. N. B. Fagin. SELTZER.
Narrative Technique. T. H. Uzzell. HARCOURT,
A Handbook on Story Writing. Blanche Colton
A Manual of the Short Story Art. G. Clark.
The Art and the Business of Story Writing. Wal-
Fundamentals of Fiction Writing. Arthur Sulli-
Fiction Writers on Fiction Writing. Arthur
Short Stories in the Making. R. W. Neal.
Writing the Short Story. J. B. Esenwein. HINDS,
THE BOOKMAN ADVERTISER
Out of Indiana comes the portly George Ade whose name is always connected instantly with "Fables in Slang". He is short story writer, playwright, and scenario writer. Mr. Ade was born in Kentland, Indiana, on February 9, 1866. He received a B. S. at Purdue University in 1887 and has been a trustee there. He did newspaper work in Lafayette, Indiana, and on the Chicago "Record". He is often to be seen on the streets of New York, but makes his home at his farm in Indiana.
ELLIS PARKER BUTLER
Pigs is Pigs.
DOUBLEDAY, PAGE. 1906.
Philo Gubb. HOUGHTON MIFFLIN. 1918.
Here is another middle westerner. Ellis Parker Butler was born in Muscatine, Iowa, December 5, 1869. He received a high school education. Like Mr. Ade, he is immediately associated with a definite title: "Pigs is Pigs". He now lives in Flushing, New York, and has just retired as presiIdent of the Authors' League of America. contributes short stories to "The Delineator", "The Woman's Home Companion", and "The Saturday Evening Post".
Mr. Cobb is a humorist of distinction, who needs no biography attached to his name. Everyone knows that he was born in Paducah, Kentucky, and that after he received his formal education he became a newspaper man - in fact he may be said to have been a newspaper man from boyhood on. He has been on the Paducah "Daily News", the Louisville "Evening Post", the Paducah "News-Democrat", the New York "Evening Sun", the New York "Evening World" and "Sunday World". He represented "The Saturday Evening Post" as war correspondent in Europe. Mr. Cobb is married and lives in
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