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ELT 36 : 2 1993 of over-conscientious source sleuthing. This caution notwithstanding, Etherington throws convincing light on Haggard's probable "borrowings " from Bulwer-Lytton's Strange Story (1862) and The Coming Race (1871). My one grumble about this edition is that it makes no mention of the original Graphic illustrations oÃ- She. Where so much specialized knowledge and loving labour has gone into the production of the letterpress, the reader is entitled to reproductions of at least some of Maurice Greiffenhagen's illustrations. Greiffenhagen's specimen drawings for She were approved enthusiastically by Haggard, who found in their wood-cut ruggedness the perfect complement for his story, and who subsequently asked the painter and illustrator to provide illustrations for Alan's Wife, Cleopatra and Montezuma's Daughter. The omission is especially perplexing in view of the recent revival of interest in Haggard 's portraitist and close friend, a revival that culminated recently in major exhibitions in both London and Edinburgh. The Annotated She will delight Haggard lovers because it will confirm for them that their favorite "popular" novelist is, after all, worthy of serious scholarly attention. It will be a godsend for those teachers and scholars who have increasingly made room for She in their courses in children's literature, science fiction and fantasy literature. A bemused Haggard (in reincarnated form, of course) will smile to see one of his stories "for boys of all ages" can bear the weight of so much scholarship. Lloyd Siemens University of Winnipeg Gissing Letters III The Collected Letters of George Gissing: Volume Three. 1886-1888. Paul F. Mattheisen, Arthur C. Young, Pierre Coustillas, eds. Athens: Ohio University Press, 1992. xxxiv + 352 pp. $55.00 THIS THIRD VOLUME of George Gissing's letters spans three years, in contrast to the five years covered by the previous one. Writing now from more different places than formerly, he also describes more kinds of experiences. He is past the period of youthful aspiration and early indiscretions, past his literary apprenticeship. He is beginning to reap the rewards of the literary life. But these are still years of frustration and loneliness. When all he wants to do is to write fiction, Gissing still has to tutor, often traveling some distance in bad weather to see his pupils. As if teaching were not 208 BOOK REVIEWS time-consuming enough, he never loses sight of his own intellectual development or that of his sisters Margaret and Ellen, and his younger brother Algernon. He knows that anyone outside the family would dismiss as boasting the list he sends Ellen of works he has devoured during one fortnight. And what a formidable report it is: a novel by Gogol; a book on actors; memoirs of Rachel the actress and Malibran the singer; poetry by Ben Jonson and Ariosto; plays by Marlowe, Middleton, and Shakespeare; essays by Lamb, Coleridge, Whitman, and Wagner; the text of Lohengrin and Tannhäuser, and publications by an agnostic East-End clergyman! He is able to read French, German, and Italian works in the original, Russian and Scandinavian works in German. He keeps up his Latin and Greek, monitors Ellen's progress from a Latin grammar to Virgil, and looks forward to their one day studying Greek together. Unable to afford membership in a lending library for part of this period, he laments falling behind in his reading of contemporaries like Hardy and James, whom he admires, but says he can forgo Meredith, who lacks "constructive power," and Trollope, a "terrible Philistine." In responding to Algernon's surprising decision to emulate him by writing fiction, Gissing recalls the evolution of his own literary technique . He was conscious of owing "a vast debt" to George Sand, Balzac, Turgenev, and several unnamed others, and he speaks of "musing over the plots of familiar novels, & following out the ideas on which the writer worked." Construction he deems all-important: a story should divide itself much as a play does, with interest gradually building up to each "strong situation." Three leading characters are enough, and incidents in the plot, not the author's direct commentary, should bring out their "points of personality." The writer should avoid using his own life in his...

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Additional Information

ISSN
1559-2715
Print ISSN
0013-8339
Pages
pp. 208-212
Launched on MUSE
2010-05-21
Open Access
No
Archive Status
Will Be Archived 2021
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