FAME IS THE SPUR by Howard Spring


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This has greater timeliness, perhaps, and less humanity than My Son. My Son. Between the lines, one cannot help but read a parable of England, riding to power through ambition, through great gifts of organization, through opportunism -- and finding the reward insufficient and empty at the end. The story is again of a poor boy who reaches success, but Hamer Shawcross fails --for me at any rate -- to capture my imagination, my affection or my sympathy. He never emerges as anything more than a prop on which to hang the attributes of a gifted egotist, who sacrifices the ideals of youth to the urge for power. Through his life pattern is told the story of the rise and disintegration of the Labor Party, the fight for woman's suffrage, the first world war, the illusions of the twenties -- and the approaching collapse of Europe. Cavaleade of a shoddy world, with enough bits of warmth to keep hope alive to ideals and individuals. Not an easy book to read, nor one likely to touch the sympathetic cord of parallel experience that gave My Son. My Son! its sure appeal. But certain to reach a wide public on the fame of the earlier book. Spring is a gifted writer. This book seems carved out of a certain bitterness that may be inevitable in writers sensitive to the collapse of much they counted on. The publisher's backing, advertising, circulars, posters, advance copies etc. will give it a good send-off.

Pub Date: Nov. 15th, 1940
ISBN: 0548443246
Publisher: Viking