Strong Drink, Strong Lang

John Espey, Author John Daniel & Company Books $17.95 (148p) ISBN 978-0-936784-80-9
Espey, professor emeritus of English at UCLA, here collects nine of his essays published in the New Yorker in the 1940s. Still stylish, witty and often poignant, the accounts tell of his life as the child of missionaries in Shanghai before the revolution. Fortunately for the growing boy, his mother's sense of humor compensated in part for the hidebound Calvinism of his father, who pushed his son to excel, particularly in school back home in America. Espey may well owe the clarity of his prose to his father, who warred against slovenly English no less than against indulgence in ``strong drink'' and other sins. The book ends with the author caring for his dying father, their affection outlasting youthful rebellions and parental intransigence. A lovely memoir. (Nov.)
Reviewed on: 01/01/1991
Release date: 01/01/1991
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