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309 In the Days of the Comet; noted the successful narrative technique of The War in the Air; observed the symbolism in TonoBungay ; deplored the loss of artistry in Ann Veronica; analyzed the "knuckle-rapping" style, bold improvisations, imagery, "phrases of pouncing precision, and sudden epithets that leap like arrows to their mark" in Marriage ; etc. More mundane errors of fact also appear in the study. The Idea of a League of Nations and The Way of a League of Nations were published in 1919, not 19l8~Tp. 11), Joan and Peter in 1918, not 1917 (PP· 21, 126), Tono-Bungay in 1909, not 1908 (p. 23). The character appearing in The Island of Dr. Moreau is Prendick, not Pendick (pp. 57-59, 134TT"and WeIIsFs novel in 1930 was The Autocracy of Mr. Parham, not The Autocracy of Mr. Parnham (pp. 101, 131). The time may be right for a penetrating literary analysis of Wells's work, but Borrello's study unfortunately presents an uninspired lightweight survey of a heavyweight subject . University of Texas, Austin William J. Scheick 2. Myth and Realityi Rupert Brooke Timothy Rogers. Rupert Brooke ι A Reappraisal and Selection (Londi Routledge & Kegan Paul, 1971). Cloth ι £2.25; paper ι £0.75· Since his death in 1915 the legend of Rupert Brooke has grown and flourished, and distinction between man and myth has become more and more difficult. Timothy Rogers' book is yet another attempt to put the writer and his work into a truer perspective. It is a book in which the qualities of moderation and restraint are evident. Instead of the romantic photographs by Sherrill Schell and the drawings by the Raverats, one of Mottram's more serious studies and several informal snapshots show Brooke as the world saw him. His beauty and the more extravagant aspects of his personality are briefly mentioned, but not enlarged upon; the legend has been quietly but firmly pushed into second place. In an introductory chapter the author considers the state of Brooke scholarship today and comes to the conclusion (which this reviewer confesses to sharing) that not only the lightweight accounts by writers such as Arthur Stringer and Michael Hastings, but also Hassall's biography and Keynes' edition of the Letters misrepresent Brooke, the man, and tell at best only half-truths, The inaccuracy of the lesser works and the deliberate censorship of the more formidable ones have helped to perpetuate the myth. The brief life which comprises the second chapter reproduces mainly the known facts without embellishment. It does not add to our knowledge of Brooke but it perhaps helps to establish more firmly the knowledge that there was a man behind the myth, and that when the romantic aura is stripped away, something of Brooke remains. Selections from Brooke's various kinds of writing make up the 310 other seven ohapters of this book. There are a few previously unpublished pieces and a number of pieces which are not otherwise readily accessible. Selections are always a problem and it is easy to quarrel with someone else's selection. Yet my criticisms are few. Simply because Timothy Rogers quotes Hugh Dalton's comment that Brooke was "the best letter-writer I have ever known" (p. 40), I should have liked to see one of the letters to Dalton included. Perhaps because I still see Brooke as primarily a poet I should have liked to see a few more of the poems included (e.g., "Hauntings," "One Day"). But this is carping! we must appreciate this book for what it is - an attempt to come to grips with the real Brooke, to throw off the legend and show a solid foundation for his reputation. This is the most successful attempt I have seen. From Timothy Rogers' comments, however, and from the selections of Brooke's own writings, the foundation which emerges seems to be a slender one. The case is put clearly in the opening paragraph of the book: "... Rupert Brooke is at most a minor figure in English literature" (p. 1). It is true that he has been "widely misjudged and misrepresented" (p. 1) by friends and denigrators alike, but if his reputation were to stand on his work...

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Additional Information

ISSN
1559-2715
Print ISSN
0013-8339
Pages
pp. 309-310
Launched on MUSE
2010-05-21
Open Access
No
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