Maureen Daly Margaret Sherwood Libby - Essay

Margaret Sherwood Libby

(Contemporary Literary Criticism)

["Spanish Roundabout"] has a freshness of approach which makes it appear to be the spontaneous conversation of the author about her impressions of a land she loves. Students in high school who are beginning the study of Spanish will receive a very happy introduction to Spain if they read it…. Most of the book generalizes about the country and people as a whole, but there are chapters on famous Spaniards, on the Moorish past and a final "diary without dates" telling of various cities from Cadiz to San Sebastian, with an excursion to the Island of Ibiza. While this is not as searching or as deeply concerned with showing all facets of the country as Claire Bishop's book on France ["French Roundabout"],… it selects wisely and offers the average young person a fine, enthusiastic first glimpse of a fascinating country.

Margaret Sherwood Libby, "Books for Boys and Girls," in New York Herald Tribune Lively Arts & Book Review (© I.H.T. Corporation; reprinted by permission), Vol. 37, No. 24, January 15, 1961, p. 38.∗

[The masterfully shaped, deftly molded vignettes of Sixteen and Other Stories] … stimulate meditation or anger or delight or wistfulness, certainly some emotion. This gifted author has threaded her stories with a magical sense of realism, often sacrificing a happy ending for a vague one, a predictable for a hidden one. Whether creating a sad mood piece out of an enchanted night of ice skating and the heartbreak of an unfulfilled promise, or a provocative portrait of one girl's self-realization, or a humorous vignette of a charming non-conformist, [Maureen Daly] conveys with amazing tangibility, the feeling, aura and timbre with which she is dealing.

"Fiction: 'Sixteen and Other Stories'," in Virginia Kirkus' Service, Vol. XXIX, No. 6, March 15, 1961, p. 265.