BOOK OF THE WEEK

Review . . .

education for her child, Johann, who at an early age gives excellent promise of becoming as sure a musician as his worldly father. He has his triumph in 1844 when he succeeds in swaying Vienna more than had his father in his debut eighteen years before. Son is like father in many respects but he never forgets the debt he owes to the self-sacrificing mother who is at once the most human and the most herioc person in the biography. Mr. Ewen presents the contemporary life of the musician very factually; he considers the European tours of both the Strauss' and gives a full account of the triumph achieved by the younger Straus in his American visit to Philadelphia.

The biography never penetrates but flows along at a regular, unaccented rate over the surface of Vienesse life like the music of the carefree fellows it portrays. Here biography and character go hand in hand without serious thought or effect. The book is another biography of a minor figure in musical history; Mr. Ewen cannot be expected to create a master-piece for he lacks original material, the Strauss' were not men of musical stature, the events in their lives, with a few momentary triumphs are not the material upon which one can successfully lose a serious biography.