Sonderbooks Book Reviews by Sondra Eklund

Sonderbooks Stand-out 2005
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****Parnassus on Wheels

by Christopher Morley

Reviewed December 11, 2005.
The Akadine Press, Pleasantville, New York, 1998.  Originally published in 1917.  160 pages.
Available at Sembach Library (F MOR).
Sonderbooks Stand-out 2005 (#4, Light-hearted Fiction)

This novel is old-fashioned and utterly delightful, perfect for anyone who loves to read.

Helen McGill tells us right away that she never expected to be an author.  Her brother Andrew was the author in the family.  He managed to write a bestseller about the farming life, but his dedication to the farming life was never the same.  “And all the time I was counting eggs and turning out three meals a day, and running the farm when Andrew got a literary fit and would go off on some vagabond jaunt to collect adventures for a new book.”

One day, a man shows up with a horse pulling a cartload of books, labeled “Roger Mifflin’s Travelling Parnassus.”  He travels around the countryside, selling people books to spice up and enrich their lives.  Well, Roger Mifflin had taken it into his head to give up bookselling and write about his adventures.  He was offering his Parnassus for sale, and thought that Andrew McGill, the Sage of Redfield, would be the perfect person to buy it.

Helen was infuriated by his plan.  She was sure Andrew would buy it and go off on another adventure, leaving her to do all the work on the farm.  One thing led to another, and Helen decided to buy the Parnassus herself.  Mr. Mifflin decides to come along the first day to help her learn the trade, and so their adventures begin.

This book is good old-fashioned fun.

Review of the sequel:
The Haunted Bookshop

Copyright © 2005 Sondra Eklund. All rights reserved.

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