If there is a time and a place for everything, what's Chaucer doing down here? The idea of some of Chaucer's Canterbury Tales edited and retold seemed like a good one when A Taste of Chaucer (1964, p. 10, J-10) appeared last year, but this biography jumps the gun on average American curricula and spends much time on the much more difficult poetry most often encountered in college freshman English. Then too, there is that hokey beginning which fictionalizes a breakfast scene with the family of Chaucer in his boyhood. Younger readers are also swiftly wheeled past Chaucer's private life in general. It's on to the courtly career and the writings--but he deserves so much more in a biography, such as more mature readers for instance.