17 FEBRUARY 1923, Page 16



This week, again, the books are few and comparatively unimportant. Sir Frederick Treves publishes a volume of what seem to be amusing anecdotes about his professional experiences—The Elephant Man and Other Stories (Cassell). There is a translation of the book on Napoleon (Harpers) written by Louis Etienne St. Denis (" All "), who was his second mameluke. The book gives an intimate—indeed, often a trivial —account of Bonaparte's life from the beginning of the Russian campaign to the end at St. Helena. The American authors of that amusing book of " spoof " travels, The Cruise of the Kawa, have published a new book called My Northern Exposure (Putnams). It appears to be, like the other, an entertaining satire on sensational books of travel, and, again like its predecessor, is illustrated by exceedingly funny photo- graphs of the authors dressed up, this time in furs instead of in hibiscus flowers and shark's teeth. Perhaps the funniest of the illustrations are of the extremely attractive ladies of the party and of the ridiculous walrus on the end papers.

Continental Stagecraft (Benn Bros.), by Mr. Kenneth Macgowan and Robert Esmond Jones, looks interesting. The settings illustrated are mostly in the Gordon Craig manner, and there are many allusions to this designer. Unfortunately, a hasty glance would seem to show that the text is also under the influence of Mr. Craig's prose style, which is always deplorable. Another volume of the Harvard Historical Studies has appeared, it is by Professor Vincent Fuller on Bismarck's Diplomacy (Humphrey Milford). It seems a learned book, but is, perhaps, too amply supplied with footnotes. Another book has been added to the great number- that have appeared lately on South America. Inca Land, by Mr. Hiram. Bingham (Constable),-is a popular book. Sustained on the flesh of fat guinea-pigs, the travellers of whom this book tells searched among the pampas and on the uplands of Peru for remains of Inca civilization.

There are no novels of interest this week, but Messrs. Burns, Oates and Washburn publish Last Poems of Alice Meynell and a complete collected edition of her careful, beautiful and restrained work. Restraint is a quality that we ask in some measure in all artists, but it is to be questioned whether Mrs. Meynell had not this quality in excess, and whether something in her—some moral or technical scrupulosity— did not come near to strangling a true poetic voice. There is, however; no question of the beauty and value of much of