A centennial biography, Sir Thomas Lipton's life is significant largely as a commercial career which achieved fabulous proportions, but is inherently lacking in personal or dramatic detail beyond its Algeresque aspects. Of poor but stolid Scotch background, Lipton shipped out to America as a cabin boy at fifteen, quickly showed the abstemious, ambitious traits which were to carry him on. Back in England he opened his first market, and with his ingenious advertising stunts, was able to carry out his program of one new ship a week. There followed his entry into the tea trade; the achievement of multimillionaire status; the knighting; the debut of the yachtsman; the friendship with King Edward VII and the great social festivities which ended with the King's death, as did that old world of prestige and property. A bachelor to the last, Lipton was always a friendly, genial figure, dramatic in his achievements rather than his activities. And Waugh, admiring as he may be, still doesn't carry this to the general biography reader.