THE MOTHER TONGUE by Anthony Bailey


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A very British piece de resistance (could be trifle) spends a few months in America with Hugo Challis, who has left the ""expectedness"" of his life in England for this country and a job in a bookstore, the Albion. In scattered scenes and intermittent incidents most of which are as unpredictable as those that are involved, this follows his association with certain members of the English colony and their organization for the ""enlargement of British Constitutional Ideas""; their staging of a Benefit Ball which ends disastrously when Lord Smithers (a well know confidence man) makes off with the take: Hugo's seduction of first Glory, then Eve; and his reluctant participation in the affairs of Mr. Zim, who owns the Albion, and proves to be a man of many parts and interests--- notably fraudulent art works.... While much of this strays off here and there, scattering its shots, still- in its untrammeled way- it has moments of humor as well as sharpness, particularly in the distinctions that it draws between Anglo-American life and character. Casual, convivial.

Pub Date: Nov. 13th, 1961
Publisher: Macmillan