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the lazy man, the man who distrusts his from this essay which may be commended country, the over-civilized man who has to the notice, not of boys only, but of lost the great fighting, masterful virtues, men, strenuous and non-strenuous alike. the ignorant man, and the man of dull It is this: “There is no need to be a prig. mind, whose soul is incapable of feeling There is no need for a boy to preach the mighty lift that thrills 'stern men about his own good conduct and virtue. with empires in their brains'?”
If he does he will make himself offensive be that there are some of us who think and ridiculous." that all this strenuousness, like Mr. “Expansion and Peace,” “ Civic HelpWordsworth's world, is too much with us: fulness," " Character and Success," " Milithat after much beating of the tom-tom . tary Preparedness and Unpreparedness," and tooting on the horn a little restfulness and a number of other subjects are treated is infinitely soothing--and that the quiet, of in these essays. thoughtful lookers-on have their place in
J. H. W. the great scheme of things equally with the men who act and talk and strenuously beat upon the loud, reverberating drum. HOW TO READ WISELY Surely none will disagree with the essayist who tells us that a healthy state can exist A MONG the things that may safely be only when the men and women who make
called difficult is the giving of adit up lead clean, vigorous, healthy lives
vice in reading books-giving it wisely and that we must be resolute to do our
and feeling sure that the advice will be duty well and manfully; resolute to up
used. This world of books has vast amhold righteousness by deed and by word; plitude and the needs and tastes of readresolute to be both honest and brave, to
ers are widely varied. So many things serve high ideals, yet to use practical
must be known before definite advice can methods. Yet one may wonder whether
be undertaken; and these things are alit be worth while so strenuously to insist
ways difficult, and are sometimes imposupon the acceptance of propositions so
sible, to know. One
One may deal in general self-evident.
propositions, it is true, and then feel enIn an essay on “The American Boy” tirely safe; but general propositions will Governor Roosevelt tells him that if he
not satisfy most readers. They are apt to would turn out to be a good American
leave them as much in the dark as they man he must not be a coward or a weak
Indeed, what one says may ling, a bully, a shirk or a prig. That he
contain nothing that the reader does not must work hard and play hard, and must
feel he already knew. He will then go be clean-minded and clean-lived, and able
away a sadder but not a wiser man. to hold his own under all circumstances,
Carlyle and Frederic Harrison are no
table and against all comers, which is all ad
writers who have undertaken mirably true; as also is the statement that something in these directions. Probably the boy can best become a good man by their influence has been potent in directbeing a good boy, and that he should be ing the minds of readers away from clean and straight, honest, truthful, gentle ephemeral books and centering them for and tender, as well as brave. Indeed it
COUNSEL UPON THE READING OF Books. By H. Morse seems, at times, as though we were in Stephens, Agnes Repplier, Arthur T. Hadley, Brander danger, like the virtuous lady, of protest
Matthews, Bliss Perry and Hamilton Wright Mabie.
With an introduction by Henry van Dyke. Houghton, ing too much. And there is an extract
Mifflin & Co., 12mo, $1.50.
a time on the books that last through finds it is not Bancroft, not Prescott, not generations of men. But few who have Parkman, who was the greatest American descended from general truths to particu- historical scholar, but Henry Charles Lea. lar instances can be said to have been well Taking ground somewhat contrary to rewarded. Readers who have been di- Professor Stephens, Miss Repplier, who rected, we will say, to Milton, Scott, Gib- never writes anything that is not of first bon, Wordsworth and Byron, would per- rate quality, pleads for putting deep huhaps report that two or three of these man interests into the writing of history. writers charmed their emotional natures She would have the life, not only of the and inspired their understanding, but the period, but of the author as he saw it, others brought to them no message of placed before us-colored, it may be, but consolation, no argosy of knowledge. It strong, personal and definite. It is a very is even worse where the advice pertains to charming paper that Miss Repplier conbooks of lesser rank, and worst of all when tributes, full of sound sense, fine and eleit pertains to current literature. It is a vated sentiments, and firmly right. Inwise man indeed who can be certain of his deed, most readers will find that among ground when he steps into those boggy the five men who bear her company, she meadows, or tries to find a way about in shines with a light all her own. The those tangled thickets.
"five” men, I have said, and yet there are The writers in the present volume make six. But the sixth is the author of “Litno attempt to furnish lists. They deal tle Rivers.” Dr. Van Dyke writes the inwith books in their larger aspects, and troduction. Very charming fun he has mainly with great books. Scarcely any with those whose colleague he is. Well others are mentioned. What they under- he may, for to him was given the last take to do is to define and elucidate
great- word. ness, or to distinguish between kinds of Mr. Mabie, who writes of essays and greatness. Professor Stephens, who brings criticism, enters a field very much his to the theme of history learning and con
This is also true of Brander Matvictions, born of a lifetime spent in the thews, whose topic is fiction. Bliss Perry's study and treatment of history-not to theme is poetry, and he writes with a say, the writing of it also-shows us whence scholar's understanding. In Mr. Mabie's came the inspiration out of which has paper we find an amplitude of knowledge been developed the modern school of sci- and that felicity of expression which never entific historians. It was Niebuhr and fail him in whatever he undertakes to say. Ranke who gave definite direction to sci- Perhaps felicity of expression should be entific history, although it was a man called Mr. Mabie's greatest gift. Indeed, born long before their time, who was first the variety of sentiment and view with to practice it on the amplest field and in which he may approach subjects closely the most notable manner–Gibbon. Pro- allied, and the charming newness with fessor Stephens makes a plea for truth in which he may present some familiar the historical narrative, as opposed to aspect of it, the whole theme being mere style and charm of expression. He wrought out each time in happy phrases says of writers like Froude and Carlyle and nicely turned sentences, are somethat they “rank among the glories of thing which I think might without exagEnglish literature, but their genius for geration be called one of the marvels in literary expression has done great harm to contemporary literature. Mr. Mabie here the study of history.” In this view he explores the great field of the past. It is needless to say that he writes out of a full MANY POINTS OF VIEW mind and that his characterizations are delightful ; whether it be of Greeks that I reading a story by Mr. Henry James, he discourses, of Macaulay, Bacon or old
it is always a question whether one is Montaigne.
facing a serious problem, or treating The most serious aspects of this task of whipped cream as if it were solid food. telling people what they should read, pre- Age does not wither his power to analyze sents itself to the professional reviewer of
a situation to its fullest psychological exthe day's literature. Fortunately those tent; nor does custom make of his charwho wrote the papers in this volume
acters very much more than puppets, movwere able to escape the responsibility of ing in accordance with the workings of dealing with books which the world has
their clever maker's personified .mind. not yet tried; but it is the fate of other
From the perplexing titles which brood men that they can take no refuge in the shadowingly over the complexities under great writers of past ages. They cannot
the covers, to the advertisements at the deal with principles and facts that are
end, there is a feeling of existence where fixed and eternal, but must at once con
a great deal of cleverness is going on, with front a proposition lying right before you sometimes alert, but oftentimes in a them—the proposition, Is this book worth
half dream, and utterly unable to keep reading? Sometimes they go right; quite up. It is the feeling which you have often they go wrong; for it is in the long its work, and you can hear the doctors
when an anæsthetic has almost completed run, not the critic, however gifted, who determines what shall be the fate of any
speak in voices real, yet unreal, through the book, but that wise and great public haze of your ebbing consciousness. The which in all times has reserved to itself
sensation is of a situation which is somethe inalienable right to determine it.
what beyond reach, yet with which you It is probably the fault of most review
are concerned. At times one wonders if ers that they fail to look beyond their own
it is really worth while to follow the taste-fail, that is, so to project them
thread, even though one may be an adselves, as it were, into the common intelli
mirer of Mr. James. gence as to know what the popular judg
Perhaps it is too much to demand of a ment will be. Literary history abounds
writer literary finish and human interest. in examples of critics who have gone
We are so accustomed to Henry James's widely astray, and so will it forever
artistic perfection, and to his skilful conabound. There can never be a guide for versations, that we have gradually come readers that shall approach anywhere near
to ask for something more, for real heart infallibility. I think the history of criti
behind the automatic hearts which never cism will show that its greatest services vitally beat. If the Roman prince would have been, not in severe and searching only be spontaneous and follow Miss examination of books, but in making the
Gunton of Poughkeepsie to her home, and public know what books worth their at
marry her! But none of Mr. James's tention had newly come into existence.
heroes are so rude. Actual guides critics were not, and will
There is, however, consolation in the not be. Let us call them rather heralds,
fact that this last book of stories, The their duties ceasing when the procession Soft Side, has a degree more of human starts. Francis W. Halsey.
THE SOFT SIDE. By Henry James. The Macmillan Co., 12mo, $1.50.
interest than “Terminations” had. The ing grasp of the grammatical demands of charm of its author's method is never- the English language as a means of literary failing, and the success of his epithets and expression—a great gain to the mind of phrases is still secure.
any reader that is at all sensitive to soleHuman interest is not lacking in Mrs. cisms. The beauty of the scenery is vastly Dudeney's Men of Marlowe's. The men marred if one's wagon has no springs and are Nat Chaytor, who died of consump- the road is full of rocks. Some of the tion, and Orion, who killed his aunt for early crudeness has disappeared in these her money; Arnold, who loved his dog vivid pictures of soldier life, and with it better than he loved Clarissa, who turned some of the Manet splashes of color in out to be his slovenly charwoman's daugh- word-painting. The vigor and fearlesster; Orchard and Hopkins and Jimmy. ness are here, without the apparent aim Pathetic figures they are, half developed at effect. The book is a distinct advance, in their manhood, therefore abnormal. but we shall never know whether or not They lived in Marlowe's Inn, just off it would have been its author's swansong Holborn, in “sets" provided with “dun- before literary death. Those who knew scopes.” Their stories are told in crisp, the man say No. short sentences, forming chapters linked In Billy Sanders, Mr. Joel Chandler together by the association of the charac- Harris has given us a character that will ters with one another. The author says, not soon be forgotten. On the Wing of in her unusual introduction, written in Occasions contains, as its longest story, dialogue: “I prefer sad tales; there is “ The Kidnapping of President Lincoln," more strength in a sob than in a giggle.” one of the best bits of rapid narative and True, but not more than in a laugh. Gig- clear-cut character sketching in many a gling is not the only alternative. The day. The first sentence sends you deeper stories may not unjustly be called studies into your easy-chair for pure content. in unhealthy death. They are written The story is in full swing by the time the with power, but power turned in the first page is turned. Your interest in wrong direction, in one of the two direc
young Francis Bethune's state of mind is tions where women turn it who "write immediate, not so much from psychologiwith a man's touch." Strong women cal analysis, as from an instinctive percepwriters are almost always either morbid or tion that the author is not analyzing for erotic.
the sake of analysis, but for the purpose How would he have developed had he of getting you into the story. The lived? This question is of perpetual in- glimpses of President Lincoln," the man terest when a man dies who appears to be of the people,” are perfectly consistent riding on the crest of his highest wave. with our ideas of him, even to the point With Stevenson there could be only one where he says that if Stanton called him answer: Towards greater perfection of art add fool, there must be something in and ripeness of sane thought. With Ste- it, for Stanton generally knew what he phen Crane the answer is not so was talking about. His deep melancholy These stories of the Spanish war, Wounds dispelled by one of Billy Sanders's stories in the Rain, show the author's encourag- is shown in a few skilful touches, and that shrewd old man, though unversed in alities of Earnshaw and Heathcliff in Latin and Greek, knew human nature-a their relations to each other and to the much more useful acquirement than remaining characters in the book. The knowledge of books.
Billy's tact in dealing with the Secret MEN OF MARLOWE's. By Mrs. Henry Dudeney. Henry Holt & Co., 12mo. $1.25.
Service men gives further evidence that WOUNDS IN THE RAIN. By Stephen Crane. Frederick ON THE WING OF OCCASIONS. By Joel Chandler Harris.
Doubleday, Page & Co., 12mo, $1.50.
A. Stokes Co., $1.50.
same kind of interest is felt in the pasMr. Harris has followed in the wake of sionate, tyrannic Carmichaels-Philip and the supply of historical fiction that must Nicholas—who fill the opening chapters be proceeding from demand, but he fol- of Chloris of the Island with a picture of lows at a far enough distance, and in a dark brutality. There are adventures in gait of his own distinctive enough to place this book, but they have interest only in him in a class by himself. The Secret relation to the characters, and not per se. Service is a phase of the Civil War that Mr. Watson has succeeded in combining has not been made to pall upon our jaded narrative and psychology, so that the intastes. Those of us that find historical terest is divided between the thing done novels hard reading will have no difficulty and the doer. It cannot be denied that with a detective story. A healthy mind the fascination of the story is uncanny, finds great relief from close work in de- but fascination it undoubtedly has. tective stories. Therefore this book can Marie Corelli's last novel, The Master be heartily recommended to anyone in Christian, should have an index. It need of relaxation. The style is so good might read somewhat after this fashion: in all the five stories, that the vehicle of
Africa—a fashionable pasture-land for disapthought is forgotten in the interest of the
pointed lives, p. 199. narrative—the test of a really good style. Actors' vs. Priests' follies, p. 193.
Mr. A. B. Frost's illustrations of Mr. Celibacy in the Roman church, p. 127. Harris's stories have been so successful as
Charm-more fatal in a woman than beauty, p. examples of illustrations which, truly il
Eyes-English vs. Italian, p. 319. lustrate, that their absence in this book
“Go," definition of (in a man), p. 392. must cause regret. It would be interest- Hand, character shown in, p. 177. ing to see what Mr. Frost would make of Heretic, definition of, by precocious child of the scene in President Lincoln's private twelve, p. 138. office.
Marriage vs. liaisons, p. 161.
Man's nature, p. 154. Since the days of “Wuthering Heights”
Sleighrides in America, p. 250. there have not been many books enthral
Socialism, p. 126, et al. ling enough to make one sit up of nights Stage managers who keep harems, p. 153. to read. Mere adventure will not do it. Tramping with tramps, p. 257. That recent book of hair-breadth escapes
Vivisection, p. 130. par excellence, "To Have and to Hold,"
Woman's rights, p. 126.
temptations, p. 157. cannot do it. Adventure follows adventure, but the susceptibility to impression
This rough outline gives but a faint idea becomes gradually dulled, and it is possi- of the many subjects touched upon by ble to put the book down half-finished,
half-finished, Miss Corelli. The amount of riches which with no particular interest as to what
she offers is well nigh overwhelming. Six form of escape is to follow. Its quality hundred pages of compressed thought on will be the same as that of the preceding all topics of the day, with contemporary one, you are sure.
references to wireless telegraphy, the The fascination of “ Wuthering Dreyfus case, President Faure's death, Heights," dark and unpleasant as the
CHLORIS OF THE ISLAND. By H. B. Marriott Watson. book undoubtedly is, lies in the person- Harpor & Brothers, 12mo, $1.50.