OVER THE GATE by Miss Read
Kirkus Star


Email this review


Fairacre is one of the few completely conceived places in current fiction. This is Miss Read's tenth book set in the small English village and told in the voice of the schoolmistress whose eye is a little sharper than she allows her tongue to be. Like the other titles in this satisfying series, the book is made up of stories and vignettes centered around the familiar characters who, this time, tell the stories to the teacher. There are: Mrs. Pringle, she of the distinguished limp, donned and doffed as a sign of her fluctuating dudgeon; Joseph Coggs, the village version of the so-called culturally deprived child whose imagination and trust have not failed him yet; Mr. Willett, the elderly school janitor whose stories date back to a childhood spent all in the same place and all the richer for it; and the old classmate, still restlessly married and prodding her comfortably single friend to make something, anything else, of herself. The ""Miss Read"" books have a special sort of realism--the comfortable pace of country life and its people observed without spite in the light of a gentle comic gift. There are those readers who feel that all the good books about the good qualities have stopped being written. They can be safely directed to Miss Read--they may even catch a glimpse of ""that page beneath the page"" her stories always offer.

ISBN: 0618884173
Publisher: Houghton Mifflin