THE WAYFARERS by Dan Wickenden
Kirkus Star


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There's a dearth of the sort of book about people that this is. It should make it easy to sell, particularly when you can also say that it is good reading. It is a family story, set in a Mid West large town not far from Detroit -- middle class social status -- between the wars period. The father is a city editor, in his fifties, a widower who has sunk to the depths after his wife's death, and is only slowly emerging to a sense of his responsibility about his virtually grown children, eleven years later. And then it seems to be too late -- his interest is considered prying and is resented. Charlie, his eldest son, shocks him by his fascistic ideas, fostered by his being pretty well on the rocks himself; Laurette, the eldest daughter, has a night club job, and is doing her share in keeping Charlie's little family together; Patricia has fallen out of love with Johnny, who has besued her steadily for years, and into love with a glamorous young newspaper man, brought home by her father one evening; and Joel, at 14, seems completely and stolidly self sufficient. But Rourke, Pat's new suitor, shocks them all into disruption by maliciously spreading gossip about their dead mother -- and the fat's in the fire. It takes some heartbreaks -- and a death -- before emotions become disentangled, and the family discovers that there is still a kind of unity, and a chance to build for the future... Good pace of story -- sound characterization, if at times a trifle overdrawn a and excellent dialogue (of which there is too little in most books today). Rourke's abnormal sex life -- and Charlie's nymphomaniac wife strike notes that may be distasteful to conservatives, but neither situation is offensively handled. Wickenden is fulfilling his early promise"".

Pub Date: June 21st, 1945
Publisher: Morrow