7 FEBRUARY 1969, Page 20

Shorter notices

Salome Dear, Not in the Fridge! chosen and introduced by Arthur Marshall (Allen and Unwin 25s). Trooper Jones, Stanley J. Sharp- less, Edward Blishen, the excellent Miss Norah Bonc—all present and incorrect in company with other old faithfuls from the New States- man's famed competition page. A special de- light to number amongst these heroes of the bookish escapade, masters of the bland en-

venomed jibe, not a few in whom the SPECTATOR may also claim a humble interest: R. Kennard Davis, Vera Teller, J. M. Crooks, E. 0. Parrott, G. J. Blundell et a!, arch- denizens of that happy portion of the weekly scene—the Fagg end of the paper.

A Book of Herbs Dawn Macleod (Duckworth 42s). `To enable one to see the Fairies.—A pint of sallet oyle put into a vial glasse; first wash it with Rose-Water and Marygolde water; the flowers to be gathered towards the east . . . put thereto the budds of Holly- hocke, the flowers of Marygolde, the flowers or toppes of wild Thyme . . . the Thyme must be gathered near the side of a hill where fairies used to be . . . sette it to dissolve three dayes in the sunne and then keep it for thy use.' And many other, entrancing recipes.

The Art of Spying Enrico Altavilla (Robert Hale 30s). A detailed study of the espionage scene—strong on the details (Tort Meade . . . contains the longest [1,069 feet] and largest [610 feet] corridor in the world') and sensation- ally ill-informed on the scene: or perhaps, after all, it's just a case of rather shoddy editing.

Nicholson's London Guide (Robert Nicholson Publications 6s). Here's a happy little publica- tion which you can post to your friends in a foolscap envelope. For its size it is impressively wide-ranging, with nearly 4,000 entries (all the Mandatory ones plus such agreeable diversions as London's aviaries and wildfowl reserves). This is the second edition of a quite recent newcomer to the library of guidebooks. As in the first, the type face, though elegant, could be enlarged with advantage—but then that would mean increasing the bulk or cutting the content, so perhaps Nicholson's are wise to let well alone.