Text: Edgar Allan Poe (ed. J. A. Harrison), “Review of Traits of American Life,” The Complete Works of Edgar Allan PoeVol. VIII: Literary Criticism - part 01 (1902), pp. 117-118


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[page 117, continued:]

TRAITS OF AMERICAN LIFE. BY MRS. SARAH J. HALE, EDITOR OF “THE AMERICAN LADIES’ MAGAZINE,” AND AUTHOR OF “NORTHWOOD,” “FLORAS INTERPRETER,” &C. &C. PHILADELPHIA: E. L. CAREY, AND A. HART.

[Southern Literary Messenger, December, 1835.]

THIS volume is beautifully printed — and we are happy in being able to say, conscientiously, that its neat external appearance is its very least recommendation. We are, however, at a loss to understand the Preface — can it be that its ambiguity is intentional? — “The Sketches and Stories here offered to the public” — says Mrs. Hale — “have not entirely the attraction of novelty to plead in their favor — but the author trusts that the sentiments inculcated, and principles illustrated, are such as will bear a reiteration.” Does Mrs. H. mean to say that these stories have been published [page 118:] in any form before? (if so, she should have said it more explicitly) — or does she allude merely to novelty of manner or of matter? We think that some of these sketches are old acquaintances of ours.

The volume consists of fourteen different articles. The Lloyds — The Catholic Convert — The Silver Mine — Political Parties — A New Year’s Story — Captain Glover’s Daughter — The Fate of a Favorite — The Romance of Travelling — The Thanksgiving of the Heart — The Lottery Ticket — An Old Maid — Ladies’ Fairs — The Mode — and The Mysterious Box. The Silver Mine is, perhaps, the best of the whole — but they are all written with grace and spirit, and form a volume of exceeding interest. Mrs. Hale has already attained a high rank among the female writers of America, and bids fair to attain a far higher.

 


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Notes:

None.


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[S:1 - JAHCW, 1902] - Edgar Allan Poe Society of Baltimore - Editions - The Complete Works of Edgar Allan Poe (J. A. Harrison) (Review of Traits of American Life)