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Doctors' stories are proverbially popular. Add to that the fact that the doctor in this case is the famous novelist, and you have a sure best seller. Dr. Cronin tells an extraordinary success story, from his poverty stricken student days, when his landlady was someone to bypass when possible, to his achievement in record time of literary success, his first novel written in a period of semi-retirement from his profession, which had brought him its mead of fame and fortune. One likes him better as a struggling young medico, assistant to a crabbed old Scottish doctor in a rural district, or as an eager young physician, newcome with his bride, to the grim realities of a South Wales mining town, than as a successful London doctor, who measures success in material terms. The story is told anecdotally, episodically, as though bits of reminiscences over the years had been brought together to make a book. But the whole tells as good a story as some of the books, so evidently based on personal experience. The Stars Look Down and Shannon's Way have much of recognizable autobiography. The final quarter of the book deals with the taking up of an old dream -- writing; of the unparalleled early, and continued, success; and of the spiritual change in the man himself, as he learns, through little people, that faith and hope are of greater moment than worldly achievement and security.... Perhaps for today's less sentimental audience this may have somewhat the appeal that two generations ago felt in the unforgettable Beside the Bonnie Briar Bush, by Ian Maclaren.

Pub Date: Feb. 25th, 1951
ISBN: 1166134946
Publisher: McGraw-Hill