Books: Portrait of a Lady

THE BALLAD AND THE SOURCE—Rosamond Lehmann—Reynal & Hitchcock ($2.75).

Rosamond Lehmann, one of England's most distinguished woman novelists, is the daughter of a onetime editor of Punch. She began writing in her youth, was first published at 16, then stopped for years because she could find only cliches in her work. She married a painter, bore him two children and in 1927 published Dusty Answer, a moving first novel that revealed great promise.

Her new book fulfills it. It is a character study of Mrs. Sibyl Jardine, who lived in an old house set...

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