IN THE FOREST by Basil rwell


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Most readers will succumb to the frankness and charm of this memoir-novel about a lad's first year in summer stock in 1930. (If you've done any amateur acting this story will make you long to be back on the boards.) Young Jeff, fresh from college productions of Shaw and Pirandello, lands a job with a stock company on Cod and soon finds himself rehearsing three plays a week and playing triple oles. Several ripe old actors and ripe young ladies round out the bill with some wonderful talk about James O'Neill, Ethel Barrymore and Henry Irving,--and sex. is uninitiated and he is anxious to obtain experience with more than the arts. By mid-novel he's rebuffing invitations from lasses in flimsy nightgowns and sometimes less. He falls in love three times in a week, the last time with a mousy thing he'd barely noticed before. She's Lucy, a scrawny Italian girl who feels she may not be worthy of true blue American Jeff. When Jeff pointedly ignores introducing her to his parents she breaks off with him and suddenly Jeff's a much wiser fellow. He never gets her back. One fine character is Mr. Cagliari, who pleads with Jeff to take his daughter to help save her nerves, and does his begging quoting Dante. Long swatches of horrible dialogue from the plays are great fun.

Pub Date: Oct. 28th, 1963
Publisher: Macmillan