Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme created by The Broke and the Bookish and now hosted by Jana at That Artsy Reader Girl.
The rules are simple:
Each Tuesday, Jana assigns a new topic. Create your own Top Ten list that fits that topic – putting your unique spin on it if you want. Everyone is welcome to join but please link back to That Artsy Reader Girl in your own Top Ten Tuesday post. Add your name to the Linky widget on that day’s post so that everyone can check out other bloggers’ lists. Or if you don’t have a blog, just post your answers as a comment.
This week’s topic is Favorite Book Quotes. My list is a slight twist on the topic as it’s made up of book titles that are quotations from other literary sources – poetry, The Bible, etc.
- Mr. Standfast by John Buchan (John Bunyan, The Pilgrim’s Progress)
- East of Eden by John Steinbeck (Genesis, Chapter 4, verse 16)
- Brave New World by Alduous Huxley (William Shakespeare, The Tempest)
- I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings by Maya Angelou (Paul Laurence Dunbar, ‘Sympathy’)
- Things Fall Apart by Chinua Achebe (W. B. Yeats, ‘The Second Coming’)
- Far From the Madding Crowd by Thomas Hardy (Thomas Gray, ‘Elegy Written in a Country Churchyard’ )
- For Whom the Bell Tolls by Ernest Hemingway (John Donne, ‘Meditation XVII’ from Devotions Upon Emergent Occasions)
- The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time by Mark Haddon (Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, ‘The Adventure of Silver Blaze’ in The Memoirs of Sherlock Holmes)
- The Mirror Crack’d From Side To Side by Agatha Christie (Alfred Tennyson, ‘The Lady of Shalott’)
- The House of Mirth by Edith Wharton (Ecclesiastes, Chapter 7, Verse 4)
My Buchan of the Month for September is The Magic Walking Stick, one of the few books John Buchan wrote for children. It’s a book I don’t own a physical copy of and which I haven’t read. It seems I’m not alone in that respect as the biographies of Buchan I usually consult when putting together blog posts like this have little, if anything, to say about the book.
Andrew Lownie feels it shares with Buchan’s Huntingtower trilogy (Castle Gay, Huntingtower and The House of the Four Winds) a preoccupation with monarchists and republicans. He notes a large part of the book is devoted to the rescue by Bill (the young hero of the book) of Prince Anatole, heir to the throne of Gracia. Ursula Buchan, John Buchan’s granddaughter and latest biographer, believes the book grew out of the stories her grandfather used to tell his children during country walks.
The Magic Walking Stick was published in the UK by Hodder & Stoughton on 24th October 1932 and in the US by Houghton Mifflin two days later. The book is dedicated to Carola, Margaret and Jeremy, the children of his sister-in-law, Margaret (known as Marnie).
A note by the author states, “The germ of this story was contained in a contribution of mine to Lady Cynthia Asquith’s volume Sails of Gold”. Buchan had known Cynthia Asquith since he was at Oxford. She was the sister-in-law of his friend, Raymond Asquith, who was killed in the First World War. Sails of Gold, an anthology of short stories for children contributed by various authors, was published in 1927. The Magic Walking Stick was also serialized in St. Nicholas, an American magazine for children, between December 1933 and April 1934.
Look out for my review of the book later this month.
Ursula Buchan, Beyond The Thirty-Nine Steps: A Life of John Buchan (Bloomsbury, 2019)
Kenneth Hillier and Michael Ross, The First Editions of John Buchan: A Collector’s Illustrated Biography (Avonworld, 2008)
Andrew Lownie, John Buchan: The Presbyterian Cavalier (Constable, 1995)