This school story is one of the lesser-known titles by this author, and in generally good condition, possibly suggesting that it was less popular than some of his other tales. Set in a boys' public school, it conveys a good impression of the life endured by youngsters in such institutions in the years between the two Great Wars, while also spinning a yarn of mystery and intrigue.
John Edward Gunby Hadath (1871–1954), British author of school stories and song lyrics, began writing while working as a schoolmaster in Devon and Surrey; this experience added an element of authenticity to his books. He contributed to popular comics such as 'The Captain', 'Chums', and 'Boy's Own Paper'. His first serial 'Conquering Claybury', appeared in 'The Captain' in 1912, telling of a scholarship boy's entry to a Public School - a regular theme in many of his later novels. He wrote also under the name 'John Mowbray', and produced a series for girls, featuring Pamela as his heroine, under the name 'Florence Gunby Hadath'. One of his tales, 'Fortune Lane' was filmed in 1947, and he wrote a number of songs such as 'Today and Tomorrow' [c1895-6], 'At Candlelight', 'Without You' and 'Song of Betrothal' [all 1926].
Our book is in generally good condition for its age, bound in faded blue cloth with dark blue decoration and ship design on the front cover and spine. The back cover is particularly faded towards the top. There is only minor shelf wear (minimal bumping of corners, a little wear at top & bottom of spine), and just one tear to the cloth on the long edge of the front cover. The book is slightly bowed. Inside, the binding is firm, and all pages clean and bright. The free endpapers are a little grubby and slightly foxed, as are the half-title, title, and contents pages, but there is no foxing elsewhere. The blank sheet between the fep and half-title page is torn at the bottom R/H/ corner. A coloured frontispiece is presumably by Reginald Mills (who is credited with illustrations (plural), even though no others are present.