First Lesson

Published under the pseudonym "James Aston".

(1933) Among the names suggested by critics as the possible authors of Mr. Aston's first novel, They Winter Abroad, were Aldous Huxley, Richard Hughes, and Osbert Sitwell. His new novel tells the story of a Cambridge Don who goes to Italy for a holiday and finds, instead, adventure of the oddest sort. It is impossible to describe in a short space the numerous vicissitudes into which this shy little academic is suddenly precipitated, but a taste of them may be suggested by saying that he elopes from Capri in an open row-boat; lands with his Italian inamorata in a small mainland village each of whose other inhabitants might be a character from Alice in Wonderland or an escaped lunatic; and finally returns to Cambridge and sanity after a prodigious party ending in a fight with a rival Russian whose hobby in life is trying everything once "just to see how it feels."

Those are the bare bones of a story which is filled out with many pages of wise and witty writing. Mr. Aston might still be several people he is not.

(from dust wrapper)

White, T.H. First Lesson by James Aston. Knopf : New York, 1933. First American printing April 15, second June, 1933. The copy in the scans is the second printing. Red cloth lettered in black.

Special thanks to Matthew Handscombe - Bookseller

England Have My Bones: For the Reader of the Works of T. H. White
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Revised Monday, 11-Jul-2005 15:32:58 CDT.