These selected writings are introduced by the author's half century mark commentary that offers an excellent starting point for the articles, reviews, prefaces, essays, etc. that follow. Making clear that his ""real intention is seduction... not to draw nice literary distinctions but to communicate, by any means open to me, the love and enjoyment of literature..."", he applies his ""noble pleasure of praising"" to many another field. Ogden Nash, Abner Dean, Madame Curie have his admiration; Gertrude Stein and William Faulkner arouse his ""puzzlement""; there are pieces on Sinclair Lewis, Ambrose Bierce, Henry James Dickens, War And Peace, Huckleberry Finn, Moby Dick; and there are discourses on clowns platform readings, musical comedy, master of ceremonies, science fiction, children's reading, etc. These personal preferences and prejudices are artful and attractive, avoiding the ponderous and abounding in companionship. A persuasive and provocative collection from books and magazines.