Friday, September 16, 2016

Beasley's Christmas Party: Review

Beasley's Christmas Party (1909) by Booth Tarkington is a sweet tale of the Midwest. It opens by introducing us to a young man who has recently come to Wainwright to work on the Wainwright Morning Despatch as a cub reporter. He has high hopes of interviewing Mr. David Beasley, a well-known and well-respected local politician who may have the governorship in his sights. But Mr. Beasley is a quiet, retiring gentleman who doesn't care much for talking and doesn't interview well. Our reporter hero just happens to live next door to Beasley's residence and begins to notice some odd goings-on. Mr. Beasley talks to people who aren't there and holds athletic contests with invisible foes. What's happened to him--has he quietly gone off his rocker? And then Beasley arranges for a grand gala at his house for Christmas. When his political enemies get wind of it, they are determined to spy on the proceedings and make trouble for him among the townspeople. After all, what kind of man would hold such a gala and not invite any of his good neighbors? They're in for quite a surprise.

This is a very sweet and warmhearted story--just right for the Christmas season (yes, I'm a little early!). There is just a hint of mystery, but the story is primarily a romantic little slice of Midwestern life in the early 20th Century. Nice and short--it is a quick and enjoyable read. ★★★★

1 comment:

fredamans said...

A mystery for Christmas! Yes, please!