MITTEE by Daphne Rooke


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Report repeated from page 303 of the June 15th bulletin, as follows. The title was postponed for Book of the Month Club selection and is reported here early since its dual choice for February falls within this issue's date lines. ""A Grove of Fever Trees (1950) was laid in Zulu land, Mittee has for a background the Transvaal at the end of the 19th century when Boer and Outlander were joined in bloody struggles. But the two books have common ground in their sombre atmosphere of the wild storms of the mind, their untamed turbulence and their first person narration. Here it is Selina, whom God passes by while he lays his hand on Mittee, who tells of her passion for Paul and her love and hate for her mistress Mittee, who becomes Paul's wife. This triangle adds another side when English Dr. Basil, in his missionary gentleness and kindness, wins Mittee's real love and Paul's concentrated enmity. Through the drought, the uprisings of the Kaffirs when the men go on commando, and the violence of family and personal lives, Selina follows Mittee as Paul follows her, for Selina is the only one who knows the evil in him. War brings the choice to Mittee and it is to Dr. Basil and England she turns, while Selina is the means of Paul's destruction. Again the melodrama of brutish wildness and the intensity of unbalance which has for a contrast this time the more steadfast qualities of Mittee and Dr. Basil. Perhaps a wider market than before.

Pub Date: Feb. 6th, 1951
ISBN: 1592642063
Publisher: Houghton, Mifflin