21 NOVEMBER 1885, Page 22

From the Tan-yard to the White House : the Story

of President Grant's Life. By William M. Thayer. With Portrait. (Hodder and Stoughton.)—The author is already favourably known as the writer of the Lives of Abraham Lincoln and President Garfield, "the aim of this volume, like that of its predecessors, being to show the elements of character that made the subjects great." The book, numbering four hundred pages, is divided into thirty short chapters. It is, of course, a life that would tell its own tale under any cir- cumstances, without the advantage of Mr. Thayer's practised hand. At thirty, the future warrior and President was almost unknown, and struggling to support his family in a country village. The chapters on his boyhood are extremely interesting, and prove that "the boy Grant and the man Grant were as nearly related as bud and fruit— that the latter cannot be accounted for without the former is [? beingl studied." Marvellous as is the record, no life could be more real, from its beginning to its end. Mach is told in Grant's own con- versations ; after the Rebellion and thirty-five years of military life, e said to Bismarck,—" The truth is, I am more of a farmer than a oldier. I take little or no interest in military affairs. I never went into the Army without regret, and never retired without pleasure." The simplicity and modesty of his life and character are well known. Included ie the fac-simile of a famous letter of his. It is, of course, a Life to be read.