3 MAY 1940, Page 18

"THE WITCH IN THE WOOD" SIR, — Though I am devoted admirer

of Miss Kate O'Brien, I must protest against an injustice she commits against several writers—including myself—in her review of Mr. T. H. White's The Witch in the Wood. She hauls us over the coals because our tributes to Mr. White's previous book, The Sword in the Stone, are quoted on the jacket of the later one, and she assumes that we were thus approving work of the same quality. Speaking for myself, I would like to make it clear that I consider this quite untrue. I thoroughly agree with Miss O'Brien that The Witch in the Wood is an unpleasant piece of facetiousness with hardly a trace of merit. But I will maintain against all comers that The Sword in the Stone was entirely different in tone, and that it contained many scenes and several characters which sprang from just that fusion of innocence and sound sense that Miss O'Brien admires in the classics she names as contrasts to Mr. White's work.—I am, yours faithfully, .15 Orchard Court, Portman Square, W. I. REBECCA WEST.