Books: Words Without Music

TRISTAN & ISOLDE: RESTORING PALA-MEDE — John Erskine — Bobbs-Merrill ($2.50).

John Erskine's formula—recasting romantic old tales in ironic, belittling modem dialog—caught the public fancy, made his Private Life of Helen of Troy (1925) a U. S. bestseller. The formula has worn a little thin, but Erskine tales still make pleasant enough reading. Erskine admirers may solace themselves by reflecting that although Anatole France would have done them better, many a Cabellian would have done them worse. In adapting the Tristan legend to his scheme, Author Erskine has of course ousted...

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