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The Story of the Stars


    ONE or both of two qualifications are essential in a book designed for general readers: the text must be attractively written, or the illustrations must please the eye. This book has neither of these claims to public favour: the text is stodgy and the illustrations are the very worst that we have seen disfiguring a volume on astronomy. The former defect is due to the author's attempt to say something about the whole of sidereal astronomy in less than two hundred small pages; the wretched illustrations cannot be due to his inability to find others, so this fault must lie at the publisher's door. And yet we cannot understand why the publisher of the Strand Magazine and other pictorial papers could not give the same care to the illustration of a book on astronomy as he does to the description of the home of some celebrity. Only in regard to quantity of information are we able to say a favourable word for this book. Mr. Chambers is thoroughly competent to collect the facts belonging to the old astronomy, and to condense them. He may be able to compress a mass of knowledge into a small compass, but his latest production shows that he has not the touch simplex munditiis of a writer for the popular mind.

    The Story of the Stars.

    By George F. Chambers Pp. 192. (London: George Newnes, Limited, 1895.)

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