Friday, July 23, 2021

Review of "Ros Hackney Halfback," by Charles Lawton

 Review of

Ros Hackney Halfback, by Charles Lawton

Four out of five stars

 Fits the formula of the thirties

 Ros Hackney is a powerfully built young man that plays in the backfield of the Clarksville football team. The football season is about to start, and Ros and his friends are attending the opening season campus rally with bonfire. This sets the stage for a difficult season where Ros not only has to battle his gridiron opponents, but also some of his jealous and resentful teammates.

This story fits into the basic formula of action/adventure stories written for young males in the nineteen thirties. There are no female characters of any kind, there is a constant struggle by the main character against a wide variety of opponents, many of Ros’ actions are quite noble and there is a victory in the big game at the end.

 Modern readers may find the story far too simplistic and somewhat bland in tone and structure. The main characters, all male, study and play football. Much of the football terminology will be confusing to people that follow the modern game. Yet, it is an interesting look back to a time when adventure stories did not include females and always had to end in a major victory at the end. Often with last second heroics by the main character. If you do not read it in possession of a historical frame of mind, you likely will find it dull.

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