LOOSE CHIPPINGS by Thomas Gerald Wheeler


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Typical escape-fantasy"" is the psychiatrist's verdict on Bob Vickery's Brigadoon, a paradise uniquely tailored for an Early English Lit professor (the inn-keeper's name dates from Chaucer, King Arthur is buried inside the town limits). Forty years old and out-of-touch in San Francisco, Vickery suddenly flies to England, motors into the country and stumbles on this ancient village, whose name he presumes to be ""Loose Chippings"" (British for ""soft shoulders""). The townspeople conspire to keep him there--to marry their elementary-school teacher and teach their secondary school pupils--by leaving his rented auto in the hands of their mad inventor and surrounding him with unparalleled food and companionship. Various bits of local magic miss and the romance is flatly predictable, but the story holds you, maybe because the escape fantasy is typical, and very pleasant to share. The resourceful Vickery has a shrewd way of getting back into the disappearing village which will intrigue escapists on a short visit to a better life. Characterization is thin (except for Vickery) but the style matches Wheeler's previous performances. Entertaining though non mind-expanding.

Pub Date: April 5th, 1969
Publisher: S. G. Phillips