THE WINTHROP COVENANT by Louis Auchincloss


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Blue blood often rum Colder, and this once again affiliated group of short stories follows a pride of Winthrops from early Puritan times to the present day when ""the world (is) falling apart"" but not theirs--granted a natural immunity through genealogical and social distinction. History gets a token acknowledgment in the first episodes going back to the Bay Colony of Governor Winthrop when troublesome Anne Hutchinson was declared ""unfit"" or during the Salem trials whose victims ""stank with pride"" and died to spite bigoted Puritanism. On down the years--a French bastard son is sent to the New World where he witnesses a different kind of suppression and the hanging of a slave; or turning to lighter things, another Winthrop's attempt to salvage his law partner's marriage. When twigs are bent, usually they're dry ones--say Adam Winthrop who after a long dull marriage is successfully used by a lady novelist; or the insecure mother of triplets who wonders whether it's better to be a cipher or a pose? or Althea, a Winthrop too, losing her husband who proves to be ""The Penultimate Puritan,"" more recalcitrant than she could ever be. There are all the familiar old Auchincloss hangouts from Back Bay to New York to Washington; there's the personable, equable tone of voice, never raised; and that demeanor while if gentlemanly to a fault has an unmistakable virtue--it's vouched for by the wide readership which obtains.

Pub Date: March 25th, 1976
Publisher: Houghton Mifflin