10 JANUARY 1914, Page 26

The Breath of the Barren. By L. H. Brinkman. (Herbert

Jenkins. 68.)—This story is timely at the present moment, as throwing light on the character of the Boers, though the date is in the " seventies" of the nineteenth century. The problem with which Mr. Brinkman chiefly deals is the extermination by the Boers of the Bushmen in the Karroo. The account of the arrest of Brandt and his associates and their subsequent trial, and the disappearance of the witnesses, is very dramatic, and the reader will acknowledge that if Lynch law is ever justified, the pursuit and capture of the Bushmen, though technically illegal, was morally necessary. The persons of the story all being Dutch, the author gives many sidelights, some of them unconscious, on the point of view and motives of the pure- blooded Boer. The novel is well worth reading, though the workmanship, from the point of view of fiction, is not particularly striking.