12 APRIL 1935, Page 34



disaster that ought never to have happened, and what chances money . . _

during and after the War, that it lacks that element of name." .. , • • is Dr. Cronin's great weakness—he has only the courage of the gamut of life in the logging camps—love, marriage, fortune, convictions which were held a generation ago by a tiny the panic of 1907, family life; love again, vaster fortune, minority (who were penalized for holding them), convictions glamour, parties, extravagance, the boom, the slump, to the which today are held by nearly. everybody. He is a humani- appropriate ending : Love in Winter. By Storm Jameson: (Cassell. 7s. 6d.) shortly supersede it entirely. But there are few signs yet of

immortal works of literature or indispensable pictures of con- Love in Winter, the middle 'volume of a trilogy, is an temporary manners ? Were they worth writing, and are they attempt to catch sonnething of the rhythm of contemporary Appropriately, perhaps, it was on a bed of convalescence lives it reflects, from' hustle, triviality and formleisness. To that I opened The Stars Look Down, and it was heartening, follow the fortunes of Hervey Russell is certainly to be re- and indeed tonic, to discover that although the author is a minded of the difficulties of many women who struggle to earn doctor, his principal theme is the sanctity of htunan life. And their own livings, but if only Miss Jameson were content to how enviable, I thought, to be a doctor who can write, and to slo'w down and isolate her specimens a little more, to practise have been for years continuously brought in touch with the a greater economy of means, she would be more rewarding. intimacies of countless homes, the growth and decline of On these large canvases the paint is apt to run thin, and a few families, and the secrets of individuals. And as I read on I dabs or lumps of colour are often made to do duty for careful began to compare Dr. Cronin, somewhat to his advantage, with drawing : for example, we are told of one person that " she the well-known Dr. Blank, who has also beaten his lancet was generous, selfish, erratic, kind and unscrupulous," and into a pen, and gives facile and frequent pleasure to thousands of another, a certain Julian Swan, that " he was affable, ener- by flattering their simpler prejudices in unassuming prose. getic, spiteful, self-indulgent, generous, vain." Fortunately, And I read f-Mther, admiringthe doctor's industry and energy, we are told a great deal more about Swan, for Miss Jameson his wide sympathies, his unwillingness to boggle at disquieting can be a sly satirist. Swan declares that " the modem intellect symptoms, his robustness and humour, his whole complex is only a morbid growth—the invention of Jews and liberals," plot running as efficiently as a hospital, his chapter openings and we see him surveying London from the top of St. Paul's : with their gathered-up threads of --narrative, and his chapter " ' What a city to sack ! ' he murmured. His blood shook in endings with their note of suspense ; and I learnt that he his body. I am the modern condottiere, he thought : hereby I knows how to tell a story in 'which subtlety plays very little declare war on all spineless snickering intellectuals, blind-at-birth

ideal is ts, libera, pacifists, hokeepers. I am inxicated with part indeed, in which there is no possible danger of mistaking

life, I intend tols drink, ride,s eapt , figh to t, make love, as much as I the villains for heroes, or vice versa, and in which melodrama, please : . ;The white-faced, black-coated shopkeepers . . . have sentimentality and coincidence are given a good run for your preached-liberalism only to save their miserable sickly skins from library subscription. The central episode of his book is a mine being drubbed by some young man with more courage than .' 3, it affords him of examining the structure of society and the This amusing exposure of an all too familiar kind of canting power of money, of dividing houses against themselves and of nonsense ends, of course, in a fascist ealnte, witnessed only by putting idealism into practice ! But as I went on reading (and two schoolboys who' have been watching with " the aloof by this time I was well under way) I noted about this chronicle embarrassed interest of the young," while Swan murmurs or panorama of life among the people of Tynecastle before, to himself, " ' Ave Julian ! ' After all, it was an Emperor's


strangeness so inevitably to be found in a work of art, that it Miss Ferber, the author of Cimarron and of Show Boat, tells the ordinary reader little or nothing that is essentially seems to have a mind perfectly adapted to the needs of the new, and, what is more remarkable .(though not uncommon, cinema ; it is doubtful whether anything more than a certain especially with regard to the War), that it tends to describe the exuberance of detail would have been :lost if she had chosen events of twenty years ago from today's point of view. If The to write her new book in the form of a scenario ; and it is easy Stars Look Down had appeared in 1915 it would have been to imagine_ it ptit up in shop windows as " the book of the thought highly seditious, revolutionary, and generally daring film." Come and Get It is an immensely brisk and genial and advanced, for the honours go to conscientious objectors account of the rise to wealth of Scotch-Irish and. Scandinavian and the victims of capitalism ; ridicule and obloquy are lumber-lacks in the woods of Wisconsin; and in particular poured upon the holders of power and authority ; and fun is of one Barney Glasgow, appropriately nicknamed Gusto, who even made of the Old School Tie and esprit de corps. And that is rushed with a bang and a swing through the whole tarian with an able pen but a purely conventional mind, like " This is th© most vital, amazing, stirring, goofy, thrilling a gesture of nobility, of sacrifice, towards the sublime." where hearts are of gold and muscles of iron; where the lump