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Book - “A Boy In The House”
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Title: Book - “A Boy In The House”
Identifier: 2004.5.1
Donor: William Russell
Item Date: 1952
Creation Date: 2011
Location: Benares Historic House

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Description: A first edition, green, hard covered book, entitled 'A Boy In The House', by Mazo de la Roche. It was published in London: MacMillan and Co., Ltd. The cover is blank, with the title, author, and publisher information written in gold along the spine. Inside, the first page has an inscription that reads, "For Helen - to read on the voyage - with all good wishes for happy days ahead. Mazo de la Roche." The following page has the title in black type. The frontispiece has a list of Mazo's work up until 1952. The opposite page has the title, author, and publishing information, plus the date. One the reverse side reads, "This book is copyright in all countries which are signatories to the Berne Convention". Below that "To Norah With Love." Below that, "Printed in Great Britain." There are 122 pages. At the bottom of the last page reads, "Printed by R. and R. Clark, Ltd., Edinburgh."

Mazo Louise Roche was born in Newmarket in 1879. She was the only child of Alberta and William Roche. In 1927, her novel "Jalna" published under the name Mazo de la Roche won the $10,000 first prize in a competition sponsored by Atlantic Monthly, this win led to the publishing of a series of novels about the Whiteoak family of Jalna. The Jalna series was exceedingly popular, selling thousands of copies, with "Jalna" being turned into a movie and a television series. Mazo lived in Trail Cottage, which was located on property that had originally belonged to the Benares Estate. Mazo was friends with the Harrises and had visited Benares on several occasions. It has been speculated that the Benares House was Mazo's inspiration for the "Whiteoaks of Jalna". Mazo died on 12 July 1961. See: C.J. Taylor, 'de la Roche, Mazo' "Canadian Encyclopedia, 2000 Edition" (Toronto: McClelland & Stewart, 1999), 639.
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