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ELT 49 : 1 2006 and reduces Kipling's achievement to "trickery," "sleight of hand." He later revised the article as an introduction to a collection of Kipling's stories (Mrs. Bathurst and other Stories, 1991) and softened the accusation somewhat. The fact remains that for a hundred years critics have feared being conned by a writer whose politics and value system are antipathetic to theirs and have sought ways to declare him "bogus." Kipling's answer (if there is an answer) in "A Matter of Fact" (Many Inventions) states that all writing is a "lie," a fiction; "for Truth is a naked lady, and if by accident she is drawn up from the bottom of the sea, it beho[o]ves a gentleman either to give her a print petticoat or to turn his face to the wall and vow that he did not see." The poem "A Legend of Truth," the prologue to a story about postwar convalescence and healing ("A Friend of the Family," Debits and Credits), advances his answer a step further: Once on a time, the ancient legends tell, Truth, rising from the bottom of her well, Looked on the world, but, hearing how it lied Returned to her seclusion horrified. Her "kindlier sister, whom men called Fiction," carried on Truth's work until the First World War. Then Truth's fictional "deputy" could not cope with the horrors and fell silent until Truth invited her to return "for Truth's own sake." People "need us both, but you far more than me!" Probably no review of Kipling's letters will match Harold Orel's tribute to the letters of Robert Louis Stevenson (ELT, 40:1 [1997], 60-68). He claimed their publication was "one of the great publishing events of the 1990s" and called RLS an Adonais, a charming, optimistic man "who brightened the dying years of Queen Victoria's reign." Both Stevenson and Kipling suffered years of poor health. Both married energetic , difficult American women. Both were dedicated to their craft. The difference is that most readers liked RLS, while too many readers hate RK. Like Jonathan Swift, who was afflicted with Tory gloom, Kipling aimed "to vex the world rather than divert it." Vex it he still does. D. H. STEWART ________________ Bozeman, Montana Hardy's 'Facts' Notebook Thomas Hardy's 'Facts' Notebook: A Critical Edition. William Greenslade, ed. Burlington: Ashgate, 2004. xxxvi + 365 pp. $84.95. OF THE TWELVE notebooks kept by Thomas Hardy that survived the various Max Gate bonfires, "Facts from Newspapers, Histories, 66 BOOK REVIEWS Biographies, & other chronicles—(mainly Local)" is one of the most idiosyncratic. Notwithstanding its fascination for Hardy scholars, providing as it does source examples of some of the quirkier plot components of his fiction—wife sales, overturned coaches, impaled horses, public humiliations with fatal consequences—it has taken a long time to arrive in print, although it has been available in the commercial microfilm collection The Original Manuscripts and Papers of Thomas Hardy (EP Microform) since 1975. William Greenslade's edition now joins such valuable research resources as C. J. P. Beatty's The Architectural Notebook of Thomas Hardy (1966), Richard Taylor's The Personal Notebooks of Thomas Hardy (1978), Lennart A. Bjork's The Literary Notes of Thomas Hardy (1985), and Pamela Dalziel and Michael Millgate 's Thomas Hardy's 'Studies, Specimens &c.' Notebook (1994). Hardy began keeping "Facts" in the summer of 1883, soon after taking up residence back in Dorchester and just before starting work on The Mayor of Casterbridge. He was still making periodic additions as late as 1913, although the bulk of the entries were made in the 1880s. This grouping, more than 460 in all, results from his trawling through the files of the Dorset County Chronicle for the period 1826—1830, seemingly in a conscious attempt to immerse himself in the week-byweek life of Dorchester and its surrounding area in the years immediately before his own birth. Since other entries draw on Hardy's reading in published memoirs and correspondence, such as Horace Walpole's Letters (Peter Cunningham, ed., 1857-1859,), and in local antiquarian materials, most particularly John Hutchins's The History and Antiquities of the County of...

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Additional Information

ISSN
1559-2715
Print ISSN
0013-8339
Pages
pp. 66-69
Launched on MUSE
2010-05-21
Open Access
No
Archive Status
Will Be Archived 2021
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