Category Archives: Short stories

‘Kipling’s Indian Adventure’

This is just a brief note to recommend the television programme Kipling’s Indian Adventure, which was broadcast yesterday. You can still catch it on iPlayer (if you live in Britain): The presenter was Patrick Hennessey, whose book The Junior Officers’ Reading Club (about his military service in Iraq and Afghanistan) I mentioned on this […]

The Kipling Journal

Officers of the Irish Guards, Warley. John Kipling third from left. The September Kipling Journal arrived here yesterday. It is a special edition devoted to the theme of Kipling and the Great War, marking the centenary of the death of  John Kipling, at Loos. It contains a very useful piece by Tonie and Valmai Holt […]

Theosophists and lesbians

One of my current projects is trying to understand Rose Allatini, author of the remarkable novel Despised and Rejected (1918). Since the novel was prosecuted and banned, it is not surprising that Allatini seems to have shirked the subject of deviant sexualities in her later fiction. The 1935 novel Girl of Good Family (written under […]

Register of effects – Julian Grenfell, Edward Thomas, Saki

Yesterday I mentioned the Register of Soldiers’ Effects, which lists monies paid to the family of those killed in action, and showed Isaac Rosenberg’s record as an example. Officers’ records are listed by initial rather than by full Christian names. Here, from early in the War, is Julian Grenfell’s record. Click on it for a […]

Wodehouse and Buchan

For the Sheffield Reading 1900-1950 book group this month, I’m reading P. G. Wodehouse’s Eggs, Beans and Crumpets, a high quality 1940 collection of stories, four of which are about Bingo Little. Mrs Bingo, of course, is better known as the romantic novelist Rosie M. Banks (that middle initial irresistibly recalling Reading Group favourites such […]

Father Teapot and ‘Somebody’s mackintosh’

Fred Studenberg, who has taken on the huge task of collecting all of Warwick Deeping’s short stories, has asked if my readers would help him in a bit of detective work. He has found the manuscript of ‘Father Teapot’, a hitherto unpublished story, in the Howard Gottleib Archival Research Center at Boston University.  Deeping’s handwriting […]

A Depressing Story

In Herbert Jenkins’s jolly book, The Night Club (1917), a group of men agree to gather together regularly to tell each other stories (as so often in fiction of the time – did it ever happen in real life?) The first meeting, however, ended in a fiasco. A fellow named Roger Blint had been called […]

Arthur Calder-Marshall’s ‘Before the War’

  Arthur Calder-Marshall   The Short Story and the First World War by Ann-Marie Einhaus is worth reading for many reasons, but I’m especially grateful to it for pointing me towards some stories I didn’t know, and especially ‘Before the War’ by Arthur Calder-Marshall. I’ve just got hold of English Story (1st series), where it […]

Warwick Deeping and the Fortunate War

War washes the slouching, selfish hypocrisies and all the slosh and humbug out of a man’s life. If I had to choose one sentence to encapsulate the attitude to the War of the stories in the fiction magazines that one would do it. It is from ‘Benjamin Comes Back’ by Warwick Deeping (Story-teller magazine, February […]

‘Goodbye to All Cats’

I’ve written a chapter for a forthcoming collection of critical essays on P. G. Wodehouse. (I’ll be sure to relay full information here when there is firm news about publication date and details.) My piece is on Wodehouse and the Great War – which might sound to some people like one of those thesis subjects […]