THE HOUSE OF WORDS by Lovat Dicknson


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The Ante-Room (1960- see report p. 784) was a ""highly personal and pleasant volume of reminiscences"" of a boyhood in strange countries- and of his own young attempts to make a living. This second volume in contrast seems almost autumnal in tone, honest up to a point, more ""public"" than ""personal"". Dickson, noted in the field of Canadian and English publishing, writes of the London literary world of the '20's through the '40's, especially in that end of publishing engaged in making ends meet and books pay their way. A man of other men's letters, Dickson could pick winners such as Jules Romains- and a prophetic book which outlined Hitler's conquests. During the Battle of Britain he brought out a celebrated translation of War and Peace. His portraits of Richard Hillary, doomed hero of the RAF, of Charles Morgan, of Max Beerbohm, of Osbert Sitwell and others will appeal particularly to people of a passing generation and people of his own milieu. And this book is largely for that market, more limited than the earlier book, slightly old-fashioned (not always a detriment in these days), and sequined with shop talk. His smallish firm was ultimately incorporated with British Macmillan, where he worked with the present Prime Minister.

Pub Date: March 12th, 1962
Publisher: Atheneum