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Out of the Ruins and other little novels

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Title:Out of the Ruins and other little novels
Gibbs, Philip   
(12 of 17 for author by title)
The Reckless Lady
The Middle of the Road
Published:   1928
Publisher:Doubleday, Doran & Company, Inc.
Tags:fiction, historical, short stories

In the first place, these nine stories are not "little novels." Such a designation is absurd. They are merely desultory narratives, unsubtle and somewhat anemic. They are not strong enough to provoke any sharp emotional response in the reader. Sir Philip has, we believe, given many of the episodes a post-War setting in the hope that the whole would pass for a serious comment upon Eurpoe of the early 1920's. Of course much of the background is definitely derived from his journalistic experiences, and is by so much unquestionably authentic. However, only two of the stories, "The Supernatural Lady" and "The School of Courage," hold the reader's attention; the success of these is due to their essentially dramatic subject matter tather than to Sir Philip's skill in the development of either character or incident. As a whole, "Out of the Ruins" is mediocre work, long-winded and slightly pretentious.

—The Saturday Review, February 25, 1928. [Suggest a different description.]

Pages:106 Info

Author Bio for Gibbs, Philip

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Sir Philip Armand Hamilton Gibbs (1 May 1877—10 March 1962) was an English journalist and prolific author of books who served as one of five official British reporters during the First World War.

A man of decidedly liberal views, Gibbs took an interest in popular movements of the time, including the suffragettes, publishing a book on the British women's suffrage movement in 1910. With tensions growing in Europe in the years immediately preceding 1914, Gibbs repeatedly expressed a belief that war could be avoided between the Entente and Central Powers. In the event, war broke out in August 1914 and Gibbs secured an early journalistic posting to the Western Front. It was not long before the War Office in London resolved to "manage" popular information about the war, partly by censorship of war reporting. Gibbs was denied permission to remain on the Western Front; he stubbornly refused to return but was duly arrested and sent home.

Gibbs was not long out of official favour, however. Along with four other men he was officially accredited as a war correspondent, his work appearing in the Daily Telegraph and Daily Chronicle. The price he had to pay for accreditation was to submit to effective censorship. He agreed, although unhappy with the arrangement. Gibbs' wartime output was prodigious. He produced a stream of newspaper articles and a series of books: The Soul of the War, The Battle of the Somme, From Bapaume to Passchendaele, and The Realities of War.

The outbreak of the Second World War in 1939 brought Gibbs a renewed appointment as a war correspondent, this time for the Daily Sketch. This proved a brief stint however and he spent part of the war employed by the Ministry of Information. After the war he continued to write about the effects of the war in Europe. He passed away in 1962.


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