THE LIBRARY LA
Published monthly from October to June
Hamilton Smith Library, of the Uni y C
of New Hampshire >i ~ ." i
Entered as second-class matter October 10, 1927, at the post office at m, New Hampshire,
under the act of August 24, 1912 _
Vol. 9 MAY, 1934 0.
A GREAT QUEEN
QUEEN ELIZABETH, by J. E. Neale.
This "amazing Queen, so keenly intelligent, so effervescing, so intimate, so
imperious and regal," has a perennial interest both for scholars and general read-
ers. Mr. Neale, successor of Pollard at University College, London, has spent
his life in a close examination of Elizabethan sources and this knowledge pervades
his biography without dulling his delightful, often witty, style. His treatment of
Elizabeth's statesmanship, her love for Leicester and the problems of her mar-
riage and succession, the war with Spain, religious disputes, and finally the Essex
episode, is masterly. He is not quite so fair, however, when dealing with Mary,
Queen of Scots. One is not allowed to forget, too, that Elizabeth was a woman
and exceedingly human-affectionate, courageous and temperamental. "She in-
toxicated Court and Country, keyed her realm to the intensity of her own spirit.
No one but a woman could have done it, and no woman without her superlative
gifts could have attempted it without disaster." This will certainly rank among
the best and most judicious biographies of Elizabeth.
I WENT TO PITT COLLEGE, by Laura Gilfillan.
"Pitt College, in the terminology of miners in the Pittsburgh district, means
life in the deep, dark caverns of coal seams, the pathetic little pun being based on
the proximity of the mines to the University of Pittsburgh." Miss Gilfillan, re-
cent graduate of a smart eastern woman's college, went to a small coal mining
town near Pittsburgh and for several weeks lived the miserable life of a member
of the families of the miners, who when working earned the munificent sum of
twenty-six cents for digging and loading a ton of coal. It is difficult to realize that
such misery, filth and degredation as is recorded actually exists in this country.
The book is an accurate and unforgettable piece of reporting, without propaganda
or attempt at interpretation; yet it touches a very vital spot in American life and
brings home a vivid picture of the plight of one group of workers which appears
to be fighting hopelessly against capitalistic monopoly, and in that fight seeking
as victory little more than the wherewith to keep body and soul together.
A LITTLE OF EVERYTHING
WHILE ROME BURNS, by Alexander Woollcott.
Amid the conflagrations of the contemporary scene, it is a pleasure to come
upon a fiddler like Alexander Woollcott. Banks may fail and cotton be plowed
under, ministers may fall and taxes may rise, but he still fiddles, and the product
is a book as amusing as any you will find in a long time. Anecdotes, wit, horror
stories, and gossip are blended with the author's lively comments on his friends.
If you know Dorothy Parker only through her poems, don't miss the word-portrait
of her in these pages. And if you like ghost stories, there are several which will
curl your hair.
A ROYAL PLAY
ELIZABETH THE QUEEN, by Maxwell Anderson.
In this play, a "big hit" in 1930, the author takes for his theme the love of
Elizabeth and Essex and its tragic outcome. In spite of Elizabeth's love for her
young favorite, she is jealous of his ambition to get control of the kingdom. Es-
sex fancies himself too much in the role of hero and knowing this, Cecil and Ra-
leigh, aided by Burhley, plot his downfall. He goes to Ireland as they plan, his
letters to the Queen and hers to hiln are intercepted. He returns to London in
open rebellion. Elizabeth is torn between her love and her determination not to
relinquish her crown. Essex plays into her hands and she gives the order for his
imprisonment. In the final scene Elizabeth wavers, sends for Essex and pleads
with him to return her ring which would mean his freedom-on her terms. Es-
sex refuses and goes to his death.
LEACOCK AND "BOZ"
CHARLES DICKENS: HIS LIFE AND WORKS, by Stephen Leacock.
There is a spontaneity about Mr. Leacock's books that is hard to resist.
Altho this biography has -little to offer concerning Dickens' life with which we
are not already familiar, the author is so frankly enthusiastic about his subject
that the book is a joy from start to finish. There is a delightful freshness about
his interpretation of the character of the great novelist, and his comments upon
the well-loved books and their heroes and heroines make us impatient for leisure
to renew their acquaintance. Many of the illustrations are reproduced thru the
courtesy of Dr. A. S. W. Rosenbach who paid thirty-five thousand dollars several
years ago for thirty-two pages of the Pickwick manuscript.
THE BIG MOGULS
THE ROBBER BARONS, by Matthew Josephson.
Altho the title may evoke visions of feudal days, this is the history of Amer-
ica's great capitalists during the period 1861-1901. Jim Gould, Jim Fisk, J. P.
Morgan, Philip Armour, Andrew Carnegie, John D. Rockefeller, the Vander-
bilts and their like, make up the roster. MIany of these men knew dire poverty in
their youth, but unlike our old friend Horatio Alger's heroes, the fortunes which
they accumulated did not make them models of kindness and propriety. Instead
they stopped at nothing in their mad rush for power and gold and little love was
lost between them. A history of our nation in the forty years after the Civil War
is far from complete without due consideration of the dominant part these men
played in shaping its destiny, and Mr. Josephson has ably presented their careers
with this thought in mind.
BOUQUETS AND BRICKBATS
MORE OR LESS ABOUT MYSELF, by Margot Oxford.
The Countess of Oxford and Asquith follows up her entertaining autobiog-
raphy with another very readable volume, in which bouquets and brickbats fly
with equal vigour in all directions. She was well acquainted with most of the
political leaders of England from Gladstone on; she was a personal friend of
King Edward and Queen Alexandra; she came from one brilliant family and
married into another. Thus she has much to write about, and she writes with no
restraint, whether it 'be her own character that she is analyzing, or that of a friend
(or enemy). That she has both friends and enemies is not surprising, for her
intelligence and charm are mingled with a blunt disregard of other people's
feelings, though she means only to prick their vanities and never to wound their
hearts. In the last chapter she anticipates her obituary notices in the Times by
writing what she would have people know of her after her death. More than most
women, she can see herself from a detached point of view, and what she writes
about herself therefore carries weight.
BLACK RIVER, by Carleton Bcals.
"Once this river flowed clean to the sea, like a beautiful youth with firm
muscles and fine limbs. Now it has become Black River, tainted with evil; disease
has corrupted it-the terrible disease of oil." The author's knowledge of the
Latin countries of the New World here finds outlet in a novel written around
British and American activities in the oil fields of Mexico some fifteen years ago.
Large American oil interests mercilessly exploited small and large land owners
to gain possession of oil land. Here are exposed underhanded methods used to
bring American intervention, coupled with local revolutions, bribery, spoilation,
and murder. "With a kind of devastating and relentless thoroughness Mr. Beals
shows that the lives of all sorts of people are twisted and scarred and broken
through the consuming lust for oil." Not a beautiful novel, but strong with
violence and authenticity.
WELL OF DAYS, by Ivan Bunin.
Altho a novel, this Life of Arseniev, as it is called in Russian, is really the
autobiography of Bunin's own childhood and youth. "I remember," and he begins
with his earliest memories of sunlight and Spring and farm life among onlyny
fields, a solitary manor in their midst . In winter a boundless snowy sea;
in summer, a sea of cornfields, grass and flowers." It was a lonely, happy and
vivid life for such a boy. "I coud see all the seven stars of the Pleiades, hear
half-a-mile off the whistling of a dormouse in the evening field. I felt drunk with
the intensity with which I inhaled the scent of an autumn morning or a winter
snowstorm, an old book or a lily-of-the-valley." The first death which touches
him, his first love, his discovery of poetry and books, Russian festivals and small-
town life are experiences shared with the reader. In looking back upon these
days, Bunin has a poignant sense of the brevity of life which accentuates the
beauty of that former world and the joy and sorrow of its human relationships.
COME IN AT THE DOOR, by William March.
The title, drawn from a Negro spiritual, "My Lord is so high, you can't go
over him, My Lord is so wide, you can't go 'round him, My Lord is so deep, you
can't go under him, You must come in at the door," expresses the theme of this
strange novel excellently. The application however is Freudian, not religious,
and concerns the unconscious efforts of Chester Hurry, a Mississippi boy, to re-
member a horrible incident in his childhood-the hanging of a malatto caused
through a perverse impulse of Chester's. An illness and removal to his grand-
father's blots this out of his conscious mind and he grows up, marries and is fairly
successful in a normal way. Then his father's death and his return to the old
home causes an unexpected climax and the opening of the door.
It is written in a most unusual way, with some characteristics of William
Faulkner, but the terrible is treated so simply it does not seem forced. There are
many beautiful passages, sensitive and tender, and the characterization, both white
and negro, excellent.
WEYMOUTH SANDS, by John Cowper Powys.
"The background of the novel is the seaport town of Weymouth, England.
The characters, a weird collection of human oddities, play their parts in a fan-
tastic story of passion and tragedy, against this background. Among the charac-
ters are a famous clown, his mad brother who preaches to all who will listen, a naive
teacher of Latin, the clown's insane wife, a young philosopher, and an abortionist."
A POET'S CHALLENGE
UPSURGE, by Robert Gessner.
This is not a pretty poem, nor did the poet intend it as such. It is a startling
piece of propaganda against conditions facing the Youth of today. America is
dealt with first and the picture is horrifying in its stark reality. Then England,
France, Genmany and Russia are presented in brief, revealing flashes. Going back
to America again, to the unemployed demonstration at Dearborn, to the "Scotts-
boro boys in the KK country," and to the miners, the book ends on a note of im-
MUSICIAN AND STATESMAN
PADEREWSKI, the story of a modern immortal, by Charles Phillips.
We think of Paderewski as a musician first and a statesman second, but he
himself has always lived by his motto "Fatherland first, art afterward." The
present biography covers very fully his career in both fields, with a host of anec-
dotes illustrating his Imany-sidedness. The author is perhaps too deep in hero-
worship of his subject to give a critical, reasoned estimate of his place in either
music or statecraft, but he has a great deal of interesting material to offer.
EAST SIDE NEW YORK
WIINDOWS ON HENRY STREET, by Lillian Wald.
The Henry street settlement, now of international fame, has largely been
the work of an inspired social worker and leader, Lillian Wald. In this book,
she gives the story of the House on Henry street since 1915-"the years that
saw war, peace, boom and depression, the Russian Revolution, and prohibition."
It is primarily the story of the innumerable people of lower New York who have
been aided by the House in nursing, child welfare, recreation, sanitary reform
and have received the gift of understanding. There are scores of anecdotes-
amusing and sad-which bring the life of these people, including so many foreign-
ers, vividly to us. The personality of Miss Wald, great in her kindness and
tolerance, makes one understand her achievements.
PARIS FRONT, by Michel Corday.
Portions of the author's diary kept during the years 1914-18. M. Corday
held a civil service position in Paris during the war and his book gives us a
behind the scenes view of that city comparable to those seen at the front.
THE ECONOMICS OF AIR MAIL TRANSPORTATION, by Paul T. David.
A timely book, the result of several years of research, published by The
Brookings Institution. Galley proofs revised after air mail contracts were can-
THE HOUR OF DECISION, by Oswald Spengier.
Supplementary to The Decline of the West, restating the author's belief con-
cerning the impending crisis in Europe with emphasis on Germany's danger.
SOLDIERS WHAT NEXT, by Katherine Mayo.
Well documented study of the financial treatment of World War veterans in
the United States, Germany, Italy, France and England. 28 per cent of the pro-
posed budget of the U. S. for 1934 goes to veterans' expenditures; in 1932, with
fewer men in service, we spent one hundred million dollars more for ex-service
men than any European nation.
VILLAGE TALE, by Philip Stong.
A small Iowa village is the scene of Phil Stong's third and latest novel, per-
haps his best. "A tale told of a village where somber, inbred passions smoulder
slowly with no betraying smoke until they burst at last, suddenly, into destructive