21 DECEMBER 1867, Page 23

Gutch's Literary and Scientific Register and Abnanack for the Year

1868. (Stevens.) Punch's Pocket-Book for 1868. (Punch Office.) The Boy's Own Pocket-Book for 1868 (Routledge.)—Here is a choice of pocket-books for different readers—the first for the lover of informa- tion, the second for the lover of comic literature, and the third for those who have yet to develop into one of the two preceding classes. Gutch is, as usual, a complete collection of valuable instruction, and it is difficult to find a subject that is not treated by him, and treated well. One or two little mistakes are made in various branches, as for instance, in the list of Ambassadors, where the same man is made to do duty at Berlin and Munich ; in the list of waterfalls, where those of Norway are omitted ; and in the list of stamp duties, where the old permission to un- stamped drafts on bankers to circulate within 15 miles of the drawee is inserted, without any notice of the subsequent Act by which all unstamped r- -drafts entail a penalty. Punch has his accustomed cartoon, and his light literary matter to supplement the serious business entries. But the information is also sweetened by semi-comic illustrations not of the most successful nature. It always seemed to us incongruous that a pocket-book published by Mr. Punch should condescend to giro mere official lists of Members of Parliament and public officials. But the attempt to make fun of these grave tables does not diminish the incon- gruity. The remaining pocket-book, which is intended for boys, is a handy and neat little publication. It gives the rules of the principal games, in addition to the necessary contents of an almanack, and will thus be equally valuable for the playground as for the home circle. But what does a boy want with a space for engagements, as if he was a business man or a marriageable young lady ? In our days the chief engagement might have been put down as " 11.45—with the Head master in the Library "—and this is not an entry which a boy would care to make. However, the present generation is becoming so arrogant and luxurious, that ivory tablets will soon be necessaries for an infant.