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SMITH, J.F. [JOHN FREDERICK]. - Minnigrey. A romance.

London, Bradley [1888?]. Octavo contemporary half morocco. A little browning; a crisp, handsome copy. ¶ First book edition? Bradley editions exist without and without illustrations by John Gilbert but his pictures are so bland and bloodless they are no asset. Minnigrey was serialised twice, in 1851 - a huge hit - and again in 1861; dramatised, translated into Dutch and Danish and inspired a Schottisch, all in the fifties. Smith, as is the way with thriller writers, was fearsomely prolific, hugely popular and sometimes well paid but by the time of this book he was poor again and died almost unnoticed two years later. According to Francis Hitchman he had only one obituary notice in the daily papers in which the writer said, "He had a thousand readers where Dickens had ten, or Thackeray one." In the school of Smith, Hitchman tells us, "innocence and loveliness in a gingham gown are perpetually pursued by vice and debauchery in varnished boots and spotless gloves ... detectives are ever on the watch, and the most astonishing pitfalls and mantraps are concealed in the path of the unwary and the innocent." ('Penny Fiction' in the Quarterly Review, July 1890).
AUD 500.00 [Appr.: EURO 327.5 US$ 400.13 | £UK 289 | JP¥ 44278] Book number 9594

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