WISDOM'S GATE by Margaret Ayer Barnes
Kirkus Star


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In many ways, this seems to me the best thing Mrs. Barnes has done. It is a more mature piece of writing, depending for its authenticity on the veracity of the situations and the characters in relation to each other, rather than on the meticulous exactitude of detail, which gave Years of Grace its appealing nostalgic quality. Cicily, the daughter of Jane of Years of Grace is the central figure, and she and Albert have returned to Chicago, after the scandal of their divorces and marriage has died down. Now comes the acid test, and the second marriage almost crashes on the shoals of the very weaknesses that were capitalized to bring about their marriage. A thought-provoking book, so real a picture of just such a circle of people that it seems photographic, a perfect piece of reporting, an X-ray of the inner significance of the round in a suburban community. It is sustainedly interesting, and while not great literature, it is a sure candidate for popularity in wide circles of readers. A big book on the publisher's Fall list, to be backed substantially by advertising and promotion efforts.

Pub Date: Nov. 4th, 1938
Publisher: Houghton, Mifflin