hold the interest of

References in classic literature ?
If I told them of this they would be much interested for a short time-I might even hold the interest of a few long enough to get them here and explain their duties to them; but soon they would lose interest and when you needed them most they might be off in the forest searching for beetles instead of watching their posts.
These stories of insurrection afloat will hold the interest of any reader with a passing interest in ships and the sea, Guttridge is an experienced writer of popular history, particularly exploration and maritime affairs, and knows how to hold an audience.