Books of the Month

Poetry. The Poets and Poetry of Ireland, by Alfred M. Williams (J. R. Osgood & Co. ), is an admirable compilation so far as it goes. The editor has fairly accomplished his purpose, which was to give within the compass of a single volume a connected series of Irish poems from the earliest period down to the present time. Mr. Williams has both gained and lost by strictly adhering to his self-imposed limitations, which excluded the work of Irish-American poets as well as that of Irish poets who were not truly national, —that is to say, such Irish singers as addressed themselves almost wholly to English listeners. The loss and the gain are obvious. Mr. Williams’s collection contains little that is commonplace, and much that is rare and not easily accessible to the general reader. His historical illustrations and critical notes add greatly to the value of a unique compendium of Irish poetry. —The same publishers have issued a red-line edition of Miss H. W. Preston’s translation of the Georgics of Vergil, originally published in a less elaborate form. The present volume is illustrated with four full-page cuts. — Geraldine, A Souvenir of the St. Lawrence (same publishers) is the title of an anonymous work, in which the author set himself the difficult task of writing a society novel in verse. The author’s claim that he wrote the poem before he had read Owen Meredith’s Lucile is easily conceded. The resemblance between the two poems is undoubtedly accidental; it is, however, unfortunate. One can scarcely avoid comparing Geraldine with Lucile. A better poem of the kind than Geraldine would suffer by such a comparison.—Roses and Myrtles, by Sarah Jerusha Cornwall (D. Appleton & Co.), is a volume of graceful, brief poems and lyrics, in which the workmanship is rather better than the material.

Holiday Books for Children. The young folks are to have a treat this year, if the first putting forth of gayly-tinted covers is a fair indication of the literary crop to come. No approaching Christmas season has ever been signalized by the appearance of so many attractive books for children. In fact, it is difficult to imagine what more tempting offerings could be brought forward. A book that will undoubtedly take its place as a standard work for young folks is The Children’s Book (Houghton, Mifflin & Co., Boston), by Horace E. Scudder, author of the Bodley Books and many others. It is almost a whole library in itself, as it contains long selections from the best, books that have ever been written for children, — fables, popular tales, stories in verse, stories from Hans Andersen and from the Arabian Nights, Lilliput, Adventures of Baron Munchausen, etc. The illustrations are numerous and excellent, and the book is beautifully bound. A colored frontispiece by Rosina Emmet is very attractive. — The most thoroughly original and the best colored illustrated book of the season is The Glad Year Round. (James R. Osgood & Co., Boston.) It is a great credit to the illustrator, Miss A. G. Plympton, and will without the least doubt establish her position among the very best illustrators of children’s books in this country. The class of books to which this belongs was the immediate result of the introduction of the Kate Greenaway Books; but while in all other cases the illustrators of these books on this side of the Atlantic have closely followed the teachings of Miss Greenaway, even adopting her costumes, Miss Plympton has made her book purely original and entirely American. The costumes worn by the children whom we see every day in the streets of the city or in the country are suddenly made very picturesque and beautiful under the skillful brush of this artist. The verses are pleasing, and the whole work is extremely delightful. As a piece of printing the book will easily rank with the best of color work. — Mr. Frank R. Stockton is one of the best friends among authors that the children have. His books are invariably full of good reading, and in every respect attractive and interesting. New editions of two of his books (Charles Scribner’s Sons, New York), Tales Out of School and Roundabout Rambles, are issued this year, with fresh pictures and beautifully decorated colored covers. In their new dresses, these books will delight the children more than ever. — Sunday (E. P. Dutton & Co., New York) is the title of a book of over four hundred pages, filled with stories for children on every conceivable topic, and illustrated in the most generous manner.—Our Young Folks Abroad (J. B. Lippincott & Co., Philadelphia) is a story of the adventures of four American boys and girls in a journey through Europe to Constantinople, told by James D. McCabe, with innumerable illustrations. — Cross Patch, by Susan Coolidge (Roberts Brothers, Boston), is a book that will surely please the juveniles. It is made up of narratives, into which the author has introduced characters and suggestions from the myths of Mother Goose. Illustrated by Miss Ellen Oakford. — The Rev. Edward E. Hale has added the third to his series of Stories of Adventure. (Roberts Brothers, Boston.) It includes true stories of Marco Polo, Cortez, Humboldt, and others. — Mrs. Overtheway’s Remembrances, by Juliana Horatia Ewing (Roberts Brothers, Boston), is a book for the older children, and younger grown-up people. It is a collection of five stories by the author of Jan of the Windmill, with ten full-page pictures. — Phaeton Rogers, by Rossiter Johnson (Charles Scribner’s Sons, New York), originally appeared in St. Nicholas, where it was immediately placed on the list of favorites with the young people. It is a capital book, filled with spirited incidents which are cleverly told. The illustrations are a great feature of the book. —Two Cabin Boys, by Louis Rousselet (Roberts Brothers, Boston), is a boy’s book.

It is filled with the most exciting sea and land adventures, all of which are well told and generously illustrated. The plot is skillfully put together, and there is nowhere any sensationalism or extravagant exaggeration.— Thorncliffe Hall, by Daniel Wise, D. D. (Lee & Shepard, Boston), is a story for older boys. It relates how and why “Joel Milford changed his opinion of boys whom he once called ‘ goody-goody fellows.’ ” —Dr. Gilbert’s Daughters, by Margaret H. Mathews (Porter & Coates), is a well-conceived and well-written story for girls.

Legends and Folklore. Moncure D. Conway’s The Wandering Jew (Henry Holt & Co., New York) is said to be the only existing treatise on the subject. The author has not entered into the study of the legend as a matter of curiosity, but seriously, because he believes the subject has a real and a large significance. He discusses the sources of the myth, the generalization of the legends, and devotes several chapters, all of them full of strange and interesting material, to the wanderer in the folklore of Germany, France, and England.—An Introduction to the Science of Comparative Mythology and Folklore (Henry Holt & Co., New York), by the Rev. George W. Cox, author of Popular Romances of the Middle Ages, is a most complete work. Its purpose is to give a general view of the mass of popular traditions belonging to the Aryan nations of Asia and Europe, not merely to discuss or relate the Greek and Latin myths. — Pictures and Legends from Normandy and Brittany (G. P. Putnam’s Sons, New York), by Thomas and Katharine Macquoil, contains many stories founded on popular traditions in these countries, and others that have been adapted from the tales of story-telling beggars.

Miscellaneous. Thomas Fowler, professor of logic in the University of Oxford, has written an excellent book on the life, works, methods, opinions, and influence of the great English philosopher, Francis Bacon. (G. P. Putnam’s Sons, New York.) If one has no technical acquaintance with philosophy it is an exceedingly difficult and tedious task to acquire an understanding of the nature and influence of Bacon, and it was to make this task a pleasant labor that Professor Fowler wrote his book. He has placed his discussions on the different divisions of his subject in an interesting form, and has wisely kept the book down to convenient size. — A First Greek Course (Harper & Brothers, New York), by William Smith, is a new text-book for the use of the lower classes in schools. — The Yorktown Campaign and the Surrender of Cornwallis, by Henry P. Johnston (Harper & Brothers, New York), is a timely publication and a thoroughly well-written book. It gives an account of the final campaign of the Revolution, and of the movements of Cornwallis and Lafayette in Virginia. Several disputed and uncertain points are established by unpublished letters of Lafayette’s. Letters by American officers and papers captured in Yorktown, now in the State Department at Washington, as well as numerous plans of the Yorktown siege by French, English, and American engineers, were consulted by the author. A list of authorities on the period to which the book relates is given in the appendix. The illustrations are excellent.— The History of the Discovery of the Northwest, by John Nicolet, with a sketch of his life (Robert Clarke & Co., Cincinnati), is a story of the perseverance of the first white man who visited that part of the United States now divided up into Ohio, Indiana, Illinois, Michigan, and Wisconsin. The Jesuit Relations were the author’s chief resources for information.—The Franklin Square Song Collection (Harper & Brothers, New York) contains over two hundred of the songs and hymns that have, during many years past, become popular in the widest sense. In the midst of a multitude of newer airs these were rapidly being lost sight of. The words are given with the music in each case. The addition of notes on the history and origin of many of the songs is a new feature in such compilations, and a good one, as it gives the book a certain historical value. — The second in the Leaflets from Standard Authors (Houghton, Mifflin & Co.) has been compiled by Miss Josephine E. Hodgdon, from poems and prose writings of Oliver Wendell Holmes. These Leaflets are especially designed for use in schools, but as they include the best known and most admired passages they can hardly fail to be useful for homes and libraries as well. —The new volume in the series of Appleton’s Home Books (D. Appleton & Co., New York) is Household Hints, by Miss E. W. Babcock. The little book contains a mass of information for housekeepers, and is especially designed for those who are inexperienced in the trials of managing a household. All sorts of difficulties which come up to disturb the routine of a well-regulated home establishment are discussed and perhaps set at rest. At all events, the young housewife has here, in convenient form, practical hints that have evidently been well considered by the experienced, and which to the male intellect, incompetent on such subjects, appears to be almost without value! — The Story of a Scandinavian Summer (G. P. Putnam’s Sons, New York), by Miss K. E. Tyler, is a pleasant account of the movements of a party of travelers during three months in the land of Thorwaldsen. It flavors strongly of the note-book. The author has a great deal of historical information to offer about whichever of the principal cities, places of interest, or scenes in the journey were considered worthy of the required space in the book, and it is in the main interesting. — In 1878 Mr. W. F. Rae visited the Province of Manitoba and a part of the New West as correspondent of the London Times, and two years later, in the same capacity, he journeyed from Halifax, N. S., to the Red River of the North, in Manitoba, and then to the Rio Grande, in New Mexico. The letters which he sent to the Times during these two journeys are now printed in book form (G. P. Putnam’s Sons, New York), under the title Newfoundland to Manitoba. — Louis Moreau Gottschalk, the composer and pianist, made it an invariable rule to keep a daily journal, which, when he was on concert tours, was sometimes extended to many pages. All his notes of travel and many of his letters have now been brought together in book form (J. B. Lippincott & Co., Philadelphia) by his sister, who in editing the volume added a short biographical sketch and many criticisms. The original work was in French. — The World, Round it and Over it, is the title of a volume made up of letters written to a daily journal by an English barrister-at-law during his travels around the world. The book is illustrated with numerous wood-engravings. (Rose-Belford Publishing Company, Toronto.) — The Autobiography of Mark Rutherford, Dissenting Minister (G. P. Putnam’s Sons, New York), is evidently an English book. Whether it is really an autobiography or a piece of fiction the reader will have hard work to determine. It matters little, however, for nothing can save it now from being rather dull and commonplace. —A Critical Review of American Politics (Robert Clarke & Co., Chicago), by Charles Reemelin, is, in book form, a series of chapters on almost all the questions that bear on American politics, from the Declaration of Independence up. The author gives the reader, in the preface and sketch of his own life, the means of forming an idea of the true value of the book, although perhaps unintentionally. — The Great Explorers of the Nineteenth Centurv, translated from the French of Jules Verne (Charles Scribner’s Sons, New York), is a book that explains itself in its title. It is well illustrated with original drawings by Leon Benett, and fac-similes from early maps and manuscripts. — With the title of the Agawam Edition, G. P. Putnam’s Sons have issued the first two installments of Professor Moses Coit Tyler’s History of American Literature, in one handsome volume, at a moderate price. This places a valuable standard work within the reach of the general public. The completion of Professor Tyler’s task is awaited with interest. — Mr. Edward H. House gives the happy title of Japanese Episodes to a collection of papers published by J. R. Osgood & Co. Mr. House has resided in Japan during the last twelve or fifteen years, and his observations on the manners and traits of that singularly gentle people are of exceptional value. The only serious fault to be found with Mr. House’s Episodes is that they are too few. The reader would gladly welcome half a dozen such stories as the Little Fountain of Sakanoshita, and a whole volume of such sketches as A Day in a Japanese Theatre, both of which were originally printed in this magazine. A Japanese Statesman at Home appeared in Harper’s Monthly. The bit of travel entitled To Fuziyama and Back is now in type for the first time. It is presumable that the publishers charge nothing for Mr. House’s sketches, since the prettily designed cover with its Japanese emblems is alone worth the price of the book. — Roberts Brothers have brought out Mr. A. I. Symington’s William Wordsworth in two very neat volumes. The biographical essay is agreeably written, though it is in no sense a profound study of the poet. The extracts from Wordsworth’s prose and poetical works display a nice critical taste. —Mr. J. Brander Matthews’s papers on the French Dramatists of the Nineteenth Century have been collected in an exquisitely printed 8vo volume. (Charles Scribner’s Sons.)— From the press of Didier et Cie, Paris, we have received L’Homme et la Nature, by Dr. Hugh Doherty. — In L’lnsegnamento Pubblico ai Tempi Nostri (Forzani, Rome), Signor Fornelli discusses the question of public education from an advanced Italian point of view.—In the two beautifully printed little volumes containing The Comedy of Errors and Cymbeline (Harper & Brothers) Mr. William J. Rolfe has completed his series of Shakespeare’s plays for the young. We consider Mr. Rolfe’s plan a commendable one. There is a place for just such an edition as he has projected and edited with so much discrimination. — The Poets’ Tributes to Garfield is a collection of poems written for the Boston Daily Globe and other journals. (Moses King.) — If we may judge by the two volumes now issued, the Campaigns of the Civil War (Charles Scribner’s Sons) promises to be a valuable series of military studies. The initial volume, entitled The Outbreak of the Rebellion, by John G. Nicolay, describes the opening of the conflict, and covers the period from the election of Lincoln to the end of the first battle of Bull Run. The second volume, From Fort Henry to Corinth, by General M. F. Force, contains a narrative of events in the West from the summer of 1861 to May, 1862, involving an account of the capture of Forts Henry and Donelson and a description of the battle of Shiloh. We shall examine the work in detail hereafter. — In the department of essays there is nothing more charming in a thoughtful, graceful way than Mr. O. W. Bunce’s Bachelor Bluff, his Opinions, Sentiments, and Disputations. Nearly all, if not all, these papers are collected from the pages of Appleton’s Journal, where they were read with a pleasure that insures them a second perusal. (D. Appleton & Co.) — Miss Jewett’s Country By-Ways (Houghton, Mifflin & Co.) requires no recommendation to those who are familiar with her Deephaven sketches and the pleasant pages of Old Friends and New. Country By-Ways is in some respects a notable advance on Miss Jewett’s previous writings. Without losing any of her freshness or simplicity, she has acquired a firmer hand. This is particularly plain in the story of Andrew’s Fortune. —Walter Savage Landor, by Prof. Sidney Colvin (Harper & Brothers), is the latest addition to the English Men of Letters series, and is the most interesting of recent biographical and critical sketches, if we except Mr. George Willis Cooke’s book on Emerson (James R. Osgood & Co.). Mr. Cooke has made a loving and adequate study of his subject. It is admirable in an admirable fashion, and is its own justification, if the publishing of such a work at the present time needs a raison d'être. The book has a fine steel portrait of Emerson.

Fiction. Mr. De Forest’s new novel, The Bloody Chasm (D. Appleton & Co.), is not so sanguinary as its title. It is a love story, with a Southern heroine and a Northern hero, and deals with the period immediately following the collapse of the Confederacy. There are a great many entertaining novels which are not nearly so good as Kate Beaumont, and this is one of them. Mr. De Forest belongs to that small group of American authors who can write novels pure and simple. Others excel him in the presentation of subtile characters, or in the depicting of a single situation ; but no one puts so much story into his story, — so much action and every-day life. All these things enter into the composition of the Bloody Chasm, which, though it lacks the well-knit plot and the sustained literary excellence of Kate Beaumont, is a book that the reader will not care to lay down until he has finished it. — Without a Home, by Edward P. Roe (Dodd, Mead & Co.), requires no special comment. It does not differ in essentials from the author’s previous books. Mr. Roe’s purpose is always excellent, and he has had the good fortune to win a large audience. — In the Bush, by the Rev. H. W. Pierson (D. Appleton & Co.), is a thoroughly delightful book. Nothing could be better in their way than the author’s descriptions of old-time social and religious life in the Southwest, and nothing could be much more unsatisfactory than the five or six full-page cuts which serve to illustrate the text. — Queen Titania (Charles Scribner’s Sons) is one of those pleasant little tales which Mr. Boyesen has taught us to look for at his hands. The volume contains two other short stories, The Mountain’s Face and A Dangerous Virtue, the latter being decidedly the gem of the collection.— A Prince of Breffny, by T. P, May (T. B. Peterson & Bros.), is a historical romance of considerable freshness and spirit. A lively young Irish adventurer, serving in the army of Charles III. of Spain, is not at all a bad figure for romance. — The Fate of Madame La Tour, a tale of the Great Salt Lake, by Mrs. A. G. Paddock (Ford, Howard & Hulbert), and Damen’s Ghost, one of the latest of the Round-Robin Series of native fictions, complete our list in this department.

Art. A Biography of David Cox, with Remarks on his Works and Genius (Cassell, Petter, Galpin & Co., New York, London, and Paris), by William Hall, has been issued under the editorship of J. T. Bunec. The author was favored with a long intimacy with Cox, and being an artist himself was therefore able thoroughly to appreciate the efforts of the man whose biographer he has become. The book is much more interesting to the general reader than biographies are apt to be; perhaps, for one reason, because the genius of the man who earned a foremost place among the creators of a school of English watercolor painters has not been praised without limit, but has received justice.—The Human Figure, one of Putnam’s Art Hand-Books (G. P. Putnam’s Sons, New York), edited by Miss Susan N. Carter, has reached a fourth edition. In her capacity as principal of the Woman’s Art School, at the Cooper Union, Miss Carter has had an opportunity to see what is needed in the way of special discussions for students in art, and these volumes appear to be edited understandingly. In the book at hand, which was written by Henry Warren, honorary president of the Institute of Painters in Water-Colors, the drawing, color, and proportions of the human figure are considered in detail. — A Short History of Art (Dodd, Mead & Co., New York), by Julia B. De Forest, will have to take its chances with many others which have appeared within a few years. The book is well illustrated. It is intended for students as an introductory to standard works, but, being a book of three hundred and fifty pages, it can hardly be called a “ brief” outline of the origin and development of art, although it may be, and evidently is, an interesting and accurate one. — Students in art who desire to give any considerable attention to the history of sculpture, painting, or architecture will find Mr. C. S. Farrar’s book, Art Topics (Townsend MacCoun, Chicago), of the greatest assistance. As a reference book and key to standard works on art, it has at present no rival. Its whole purpose is to give a brief biographical history of sculpture, painting, and architecture, with special references to the best works on the subjects, or on any particular divisions of them. These references, given in such a thorough manner, are exactly what students in art need to assist them. — The Magazine of Art for October (Cassell, Petter, Galpin & Co., New York) contains the second paper on The Story of an Artist’s Struggle ; a second article on Dutch Painters and Woodcutters, with five illustrations; Nuremberg, with five illustrations; an article on The Progress of Academies of Art in Great Britain ; a well-illustrated account of Barge Life; and the usual number of pages of art notes. The full-page frontispiece is a wood-engraving of Ars Longa, Vita Brevis, after the original painting by Haynes Williams.

Religious. The following religions books have been received during the month : The Bible Com mentary, Vol. III, Romans to Philemon (Charles Scribner’s Sons, New York), by F. C. Cook, M. A., Canon of Exeter; The American Edition of the Revised Version of the New Testament (Harper & Brothers, New York); The Theory of Preaching, Lectures on Homiletics, by Austin Phelps, D. D. (Charles Scribner’s Sons, New York); The Candle of the Lord, and Other Sermons, by the Rev. Phillips Brooks (E. P. Dutton & Co., New York); The Man Jesus, by John W. Chadwick (Roberts Brothers, Boston); The Orthodox Theology of To-Day, by Newman Smyth (Charles Scribner’s Sons, New York).