Twenty-odd essays and reviews in a collection of fugitive little magazine ieces dating between 1942 and 1962, from one of the most quotable, quarrelsome and uninglerly critics ever to huff, puff and percolate in print, Stanley Edgar Hyman. Though uneven in quality, disparate in interests, and unified only by a sort of salvaging sensibility, they are nevertheless as full of spanking good sense as they are peppered with shattering shooting-from-the-hip pronouncements. No one to suffer fools gladly, Hunter Hyman tracks down the over-niceties of neo-Freudians, the middle-class mincing of Gesseland, the superficialities and shapelessness of Funk and Wagnalls Folklore Dictionary, the blimpishness of Fowler (""his characteristic posture is that of King anute commanding the waves to cease""), the fashionable mishmashes of myth and literature, and the Law of Raspberry Jam in mass culture: ""the wider you spread it the thinner it "". But he's not always churlish: Isaac Babel and John Peale Bishop, among others, are cheered, and Thoreau cherished. Read it!