DAVEY'S ADVENTURES WITH THE CLYDE BEATTY CIRCUS by

DAVEY'S ADVENTURES WITH THE CLYDE BEATTY CIRCUS

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KIRKUS REVIEW

Davey's adventures are trumped up on the tanbark of the Clyde Beatty Circus. The photographs of ""Davey"" are really of Clyde Beatty, Jr. This is a juvenile novel that could have been juvenile non-fiction because the only parts of the book worth lingering over are the factual details of planning and keeping a huge travelling show on the road. The fictional Davey is a composite of the wholesome American eleven year old boy on vacation with his father's old friend Loppy, a clown with Clyde Beatty. (The late, great animal trainer is a character in the book.) Potentially adequate non-fiction is decked in the trappings of a novel. The characterizations and the dialogue interrupt the flow of information. Worse, some of the incidents and consequent conversation devolve into broad hints on good boyish behavior. Perhaps only a contortionist could wriggle past the flaws in the fiction to praise the authenticity of the background. Further, the book raises the question of when self-advertisement or product promotion is acceptable. In straight biography or information-by-interview, the circus and its personnel would have to be identified as a matter of course, but this is not necessarily true of fiction unless what is being described is the only one of its kind. Demi-fiction.

Pub Date: Feb. 24th, 1966
Publisher: Abelard-Schuman