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a series of illustrative examples. Dr. Thompson has humour, irony and a love of 
beauty. His sketches of the country are sometimes extraordinarily fresh and vivid.
Thus, for a random example: 

She could never explain the peace these deserts gave her. She knew they were not
beautiful, by any canon that her own people accepted. There were few stately trees, no
pastures of bright flowers; only the dry, motionless thorns, the sals and the mangoes.
There were few brilliant birds, or quick, vivacious lives in the undergrowth—she had
seen more snakes on a Cornish moor. There were only the flashing circles of a green
bee-eater in flight, an occasional strutting hoopoe, or a flock of parrots in an incredible
hurry overhead. Lizards would lift suspicious eyes, and puff out the loose folds of their
necks; or, very, very occasionally, the thorn would rustle with the shuffle of a long,
ropy dhaman-snake. Dimness would gather, and a wonderful whiteness in the west, an
orange ball, hanging above the mist made by the cart that had passed twenty minutes
ago; the dust would be transfigured, while the silence grew to a more perfect stillness,
as though the jungle paused to watch. The burning globe sank, and far off could be
heard the cries of children at play; their shouts died down, a curtain dropped on the
world, the jackals began to slink past.

This novel, with all its irregularities and imperfections, is valuable, not only as a 
corrective to so much that has been written about India, but also for its own sake.

Sir Rider Haggard left, I believe, two books behind him to be published posthumously. 
Here is one of them—another adventure of Allan Quatermain. By this
time the essential improbability of the whole of that multifarious saga is such that one
more romance can add nothing to it. When Allan wrote the story of his first adventure 
in King Solomon’s Mines and of his last in the book that bears his name, there was
nothing further from his creator’s mind than even a suspicion that he had had any
noteworthy adventures before the first or between the two. The subsequent additions
have been shoehorned in in a rather unscrupulous way, and I doubt whether their
chronology would bear very close examination. Certainly there is no possible explanation 
of the absence of any reference to them in either of the two original chronicles.
The truth is that Haggard invented a character who grew on him and with whom he
could not bear to part. The device used in the present book (it has been used in an
earlier) is perhaps less of an affront to the reader’s intelligence than most: it shows
Allan, under the influence of a strange drug, carried back to a past life at the end of
the Ice Age. Now he is a chief (by right of victory in single combat), named Wi, and
he still has a misshaped, faithful and sharp-tongued servant, known in other epochs
as the Hottentot Hans but now as Pag. Wi, it need hardly be said, was in advance of
his times. It would, in fact, be practically impossible to write a story about prehistoric 
man without a character conspicuously in advance of his times: that is why
our fiction always gives us a misleading idea of prehistoric times, since at a distance
of several millenniums no man could possibly look conspicuously in advance of his
times. But the book is genuine Haggard, not in the first rank of his stories but taking
an honourable place in the second rank. It is characteristic enough to remind one of
those that have gone before and to make one very sorry that there is only one more to

What served Haggard for a sentence, Mrs. Woolf will use to make a volume and
what he might have used for a volume she will dismiss in a few parenthetical sentences.
This juxtaposition of dissimilar authors is not a piece of caprice. They ask to be compared. 
Both seem to make life appear more marvellous than most of us in fact find it,
he by inventing physical adventures that do not happen to most of us in ordinary life,
she by finding spiritual adventures in ordinary life that most of us do not find there.