Books: On Soundings

THE RIDDLE OF THE SANDS by ERSKINE CHILDERS 284 pages. Dover. $3.50.

Many a small-boat sailor prides himself on knowing what a No. 3 Rip-pingille stove is from the reading of this novel. A band of literary aficionados accounts some of Childers' prose as the finest ever written in English on the experience of sailing. First published in 1903, The Riddle of the Sands caused a sensation by speaking of a plausible German invasion of England. It has been reprinted enough to become a minor classic. Generations of readers have leaned back...

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