Seven Lady Godivas: The True Facts Concerning History's Barest Family

Dr Seuss, Author Random House (NY) $9.95 (0p) ISBN 978-0-394-56269-8

With the commercial success of You're Only Old Once, Random House offers a commemorative edition of another adult work of humor by the venerable children's book author. Originally published in 1939, this revisionist farce attempts to rectify the ""shameful'' story of ``a big blond nude trotting around the town on a horse'' and Peeping Tom, the ``illicit snooper.'' The frothy, historical romp presents seven Lady Godivas (Ladies Godiva?) whose father, the Lord of Coventry, is thrown from a horse and killed. The noble daughters vow to postpone their marriages to the seven Peeping brothers until they discover ``some new and worthy Horse Truth, of benefit to man.'' This gives Seuss the opportunity to contrive the origins of such wisdoms as, ``Don't put the cart before the horse.'' Seuss's only prose work (according to promotional material) lacks the sparkle of his children's verse, his women aren't as interesting as the real Lady 11th century maverick who sacrificed her modesty to force her husband to lower taxesand readers will wonder why the protagonists (who bear unsettling resemblances to children in later Seuss works) are unclothed. Major ad/promo; Literary Guild alternate. (September 1)