A PUBLICATION which is an event of much importance is the list of books suitable for British Public Libraries which, under the title Interpreting the United States, has just been issued from the National Central Library. Our readers will no doubt have received copies of it by this time, because the obvious intention of the Ministry of Information, which fathers it and the Carnegie Trustees who paid for it, is that it should have definite beneficial influence in all parts of these islands. The actual choice of books has been made for “the light their authors cast on the history, institutions and foibles that seem peculiarly American,” by the A.L.A. using a group of representative librarians whose choice has been submitted to some twenty literary critics and professors and to the comment of some European refugees now in the United States. A feature of the list is that arrangements have been made to overcome the great difficulty the shipping position imposes on the importing of American books. The books can actually be obtained, some from the National Central Library and the others from English booksellers. It therefore becomes possible for any library to acquire the reasonably authentic collection, long desired, of books that are really representative of the great other half of the English‐speaking family. Among the six hundred books are, fortunately, many which are already on the shelves of any well‐selected library. Books of all prices are included, among them some rather expensive ones, but the average cost per volume is about twelve shillings. Of the importance of bringing the truth about America to our people no librarian needs to be persuaded and we are sure that the welcome we extend to this list will be echoed everywhere.
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