THE DARLINGTONS by Sylvia Brooks


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I suppose the closet analogy is The Diary of a Young Lady of Fashion Blend with it a mannered novel of the Victorian era, complete with artificialities and prudery. And you have something resembling The Darlingtons. An apologia in the form of a poem indicating that this is a cobwebbed diary may or may not be taken seriously. But the why of publishing it remains a mystery -- to this reader at any rate. Frankly, I was profoundly bored, and at no point amused or entertained. It is Susan Darlington's story of growing up,- the ugly duckling of twin daughters of people of wealth and fashion. Her father a professional philanderer; her mother a nag and a scold; her twin sister, a selfish, arrogant beauty; and Susan a misfit, from the childish whim to commit suicide (so as to observe from astral heights the grief of those responsible), to successive near calls of losing her one and only love. There's a thread of plot in the recurrent appearance of the villain of the piece-hisses off stage please- the estate steward, who interprets her childish worship and dogging footsteps as readiness for sexual experience. But in the end Kelvin and Susan untangle their misunderstandings and all's well that ends.

Pub Date: Sept. 11th, 1950
Publisher: Farrar, Straus