Category Archives: novels

Rose Allatini and ‘romance novels’

Rose Allatini The excellent news is that Persephone Books are republishing Rose Allatini’s Despised and Rejected as one of their Spring/Summer selections. This novel, of course, was the one that, published under the name of A.T. Fitzroy, described homosexuals and conscientious objectors sympathetically, and was prosecuted in September 1918 as ‘likely to prejudice the recruiting, […]

Why aren’t You in the Army?

For quite a long while now I’ve been collecting examples of the ‘White Feather’ meme, variations on the situation where a woman (often elderly, always self-righteous) accuses a man of being a coward, and is then shown to be ridiculous because he is already a soldier, or is a wounded ex-soldier, or whatever. This postcard […]

Walter Greenwood – New Blog on the Block

Anyone interested in inter-war fiction should take a look at the new blog Walter Greenwood – Not Just Love on the Dole. It’s by Chris Hopkins, who has just published a book on Greenwood.  The book is a thorough study of Love on the Dole, the novel for which Greenwood is famed, but the blog […]

Seven Pillars

How seriously was Lawrence of Arabia taken in the mid-thirties? I ask because one of the running jokes in Alan Melville’s detective story Death of Anton (1936) about the unreadability of Seven Pillars of Wisdom. The novel is set in a circus, and one of the clowns carries a copy of the book around to […]

More pictures

Since the well-informed readers of this blog were so helpful in identifying the ‘Wounded Soldiers’ painting, Rod Beecham asks if anyone can help with some more images, which may be more difficult. In his book he wants to reproduce this image of J.M. Keynes by Roger Fry:

Wounded Soldiers arriving

Rod Beecham is getting near to publishing his book on First World War prose.  He still has some rights issues to clear up, though. He would like to use this painting of wounded soldiers arriving at a station (Victoria?) as his cover image, but does not know who painted it, who owns it, or who […]

Gibbs list updated

A few weeks ago I posted a checklist of the novels of Philip Gibbs. Several readers kindly sent in suggestions for additions or corrections. I have now incorporated these, and the list is updated. At the Sheffield Hallam popular fiction reading group, we have been reading Gibbs this month. I read The Winding Lane, his […]

Philip Gibbs and the war-book boom

The novelist hero of Philip Gibbs’s 1931 novel The Winding Lane is an ex-soldier rather ill at ease in the literary world. At the Pen and Palette, a bohemian club catering for the artistic set, he notes the taste of some of the members: Some of these middle-aged women praised with rather hysterical enthusiasms the […]

The Novels of Philip Gibbs – a checklist

Update: I have now added to the original list I posted a few weeks ago, including the suggestions kindly sent to me by readers, and some others, too. Some of my short summeries are guesswork, and two novels I can find no facts about. Further suggestions and additions will be welcomed. Back in 1937, Sir […]

Bestsellers Lost and Found

At Sheffield Hallam University this Saturday (November 18th) there will be  a presentation about ‘Bestsellers Lost and Found’, based on the 1937 set of cigarette cards: Famous British Authors. Here’s a sample of the writers that Wills chose to commemorate: